Simon Cowell takes up gardening

X Factor and American Idol supremo Simon Cowell has reportedly turned to the garden and greenhouse for relaxation purposes.

A stressful year in which the pop mogul has had to deal with numerous problems has led to him looking for an activity that takes his mind off work and gardening seems to be the answer.

He lost one judge from his X Factor panel when Dannii Minogue took time off for maternity leave, but was hit by an unexpected call off when fellow judge Cheryl Cole was struck down with malaria.

However, the show was criticised recently over its admission that it had used auto-tune technology for the televised broadcasts of its auditions.

Cowell has now reportedly taken up his trowel and is tending to the gardens at his Los Angeles and London homes.

A source told the Daily Sport: "He loves watering the flowers and digging up the weeds, he says it is really therapeutic.

"He’s been checking up on his begonias on the internet and plans to plant some rose bushes for next summer."

Meanwhile, the Derbyshire Telegraph recently reported that X Factor bosses have taken the decision to exclude Shirlena Johnson from the contest due to concerns over her mental state.