What wintry weather! Wisley looks wonderful with all this snow. Many of the garden staff were involved in sweeping and shovelling snow both in the car park and in the garden, and on Tuesday we succeeded in getting the site open by 12.30pm. A small number of intrepid visitors braved the weather and enjoyed seeing a snow covered Wisley.
As beautiful and serene as it all looks, however, this heavy snow does have a detrimental effect sometimes. We measured a depth of 40cm of snow at the Wisley Weather Station on Monday. And some trees have suffered from the heavy snow accumulations on their branches.
Tony Gregory, Superintendent of the Estate Department, explains more.
"There are approximately 100 trees within the garden that are exhibiting damage to a greater or lesser extent. It is mainly broken branches that have snapped under the weight of the snow. Some are quite large and are still 'hung-up' causing a potential hazard for visitors walking beneath. It was mainly Pines and other conifers that were damaged.
"We carried out a check across the whole site to ascertain the extent of damage. Staff that had undertaken specific training in tree surveying and hazard identification were used to check the whole of the site and they reported back to me and other members of the Arboricultural team.
"We are now able to prioritise the list and determine which areas of the garden will be safe for visitors and which areas will remain closed off.
"It looks likely that the Pinetum and Howard's field Heather collection will be closed off for at least two weeks as there is extensive damage in that area.
"There will also be localized access restrictions to ensure that visitors remain safe."
Many areas of the Garden area open including the Glasshouse, Shop, Restaurant and Plant Centre. But if they weather deteriorates again check we’re open before setting out.