The May club night speaker was Sally Gregson, owner of Mill Cottage Plants, which specialises in Hydrangeas and Epimediums, mainly from Japan. She brought along a large selection of rare varieties, many of which were snapped up by members.
Sally was first introduced to the Japanese varieties by her daughter, who had moved to Japan; she explained how originally Japanese plants arrived in Europe through medical officer Franz von Siebold in the early 19 C. (Japan at that time was a country closed to most foreigners).
We admired the photographs of the many different varieties of hydrangeas, some of which do not even look like hydrangeas; Sally offered tips for planting, pruning and propagation, and her suggestions for underplanting were particularly useful (hostas, bergenia and others).
A brief question-and-answer session ended this lively and interesting talk.
This annual event proved again a resounding success, thanks to the many members who grew, potted on and then helped arrange, price and sell the countless plants on display, all skillfully and efficiently directed by our Chair, Karen Flood. The Grayshott Plant Sale has a reputation for low-priced quality plants, and there was no shortage of customers, many who arrived with baskets and out-sized carriers, and left delighted with their haul. The catering team under Sue Debenham was on hand to revive anyone in need of a sit down and refreshments whilst considering where to plant their purchases.
Treasurer Dennis Homer was well satisfied with the fundraising result, as was Programme Officer Terry Boorman, who will no doubt continue to arrange for the very best speakers at our Club Night Lectures.
Committee Member John Price has been busy taking many photographs, which are displayed on the photo gallery page.
Despite the threat of showers, a large group of Grayshott Gardeners took up the offer of a guided tour around Wisley Garden, no doubt primed by Director General Sue Biggs’ lecture back in March.
We were given a brief reminder of the origins and history of Wisley, with a view of the picturesque offices and lab building (as well as the as yet unfinished Welcome construction), after which our guide led us round the different parts of the garden, pointing out special trees and plants. An explanation of the different labels was especially helpful: a Champion plant or tree e.g. signifies the best specimen in the country. The tour led us along the Jellicoe Canal to the Rock Garden, the Rose Garden, the Bonsai Walk, and a series of inspirational Model Gardens. At the end of the tour there were still many unexplored parts of Wisley left; a number of members took advantage of the well-judged timing of the visit to look around the remaining parts of the garden, including the glasshouses, in the afternoon.