What a change in the weather since I last wrote the blog on the 6th Feb, then we were ankle deep in snow, whilst this week it’s been a good 8 degrees warmer and we’ve had some lovely heart warming sunshine.
Tom and I have been working hard on our Island beds this week; lifting and dividing plants from beds on the main borders, and anywhere else we can beg borrow or steal them. The whole bed is having a makeover and will seem ’10 years younger’ when we’ve finished with it! The overall plan is to mirror the main borders which have a lovely mix of grasses, perennials and shrubs.
We have been dividing Leucanthemum superbum ‘Everest’, Achillea filipendulina ‘Cloth of Gold’, Rudbeckia fulgida var. sullivantii ‘Goldsturm’, to name but a few. The central backbone of the bed is to be filled with the tallest Rudbeckia: Rudbeckia laciniata ‘Herbstsonne’ and Stipa gigantea ‘Gold Fontaene’, these will provide a feeling of seclusion for the willow seating area for those wanting to sit a while and contemplate. Yesterday I was reflecting on how the beds looked in late summer last year and how much they’ve progressed this year it’s very exciting and good to have a photographic record. Progress was watched closely by our little Robin friend who was on the look out for juicy wiggly titbits!
Work has been progressing apace in the productive areas sorting out the raised beds in readiness for the ‘Grow Your Own' Free Open Day’ on the 7th March, where everyone is welcome to ‘come on down’ to Harlow Carr and get hints and tips for growing your own veg or attending one of the talks. The new raised beds have been filled with a mixture of mushroom compost and lovely crumbly topsoil from the previous productive area and a lot of hard work has been put in by a lot of people to help ensure they’re all ready on time.
Elsewhere Andrew has been tidying up the edges of the main borders which have become crooked and a little shaggy round the edges, so no excuses now when it comes to edging the beds later on in the year to keep them looking pristine!
The winter gardens are coming into their own now with many different Snowdrops (Galanthus) and diminutive Acontites (Eranthis) looking at their glorious best. Whilst stopping to have a look at these I noticed I was not alone and a large frog was also being contemplative, I doubt our thoughts were on the same thing however; but he did at least stay quite still whist I whipped out my camera for a snap!
Gardener with Gardens West