Grayshott Gardeners Summer Show 2021: Class 49-Potato Competition

Gordon Rae thanked everyone who entered the competition and was delighted with the results. Grayshott Gardeners excelled themselves. There were 19 entries out of the 25 who collected their seed potatoes in February, more than any previous year. One more and they would not have fitted on Paul Coleman’s table!

As we were unable to hold a Summer Show in the Village Hall, undaunted, we held the potato competition out of the rain, in the garage.

There was a wide range of shapes and sizes. Helen Deighan’s were the largest by far and looked as though they had been fed on steroids and Helen Sanderson’s were very close behind.

That said our judge, Mavis Hallt, the wife of the late Mike Hallt, after whom the cup for class 49 is named, arrived armed with her list of ‘Judging Criteria and Staging Hints’, ready to make some difficult decisions. Mavis used the following guidance to come to her final decision.

The three potatoes exhibited should :-

  • Be carefully washed
  • Be shallow eyed
  • Be of uniform size
  • Be similarly sized as this is more desirable than being the largest/heaviest.
  • Have clean unbroken skins
  • Have no sign of disease or scab
  • Be of a good size

After considerable deliberation, sorting and re-sorting, Mavis delivered the result.

First Prize and the Mike Hallt Cup     Andy Karayianni

Second Prize                                      Dick Smith

Third prize                                           Gordon Rae

Fourth Prize                                        Mary Herbert

Mavis considered that Andy’s potatoes, taking into account and balancing all the above criteria were worthy winners of the First Prize and the Mike Hallt Cup.

The cup will be presented to Andy, by the chairman Anne Waddell, at the first meeting we are able to hold back in the Village Hall.

Thanks once again to everyone who entered what is a fun competition when the GGs cannot hold a proper show.

There are particular thanks from the President and ‘Mrs President’ who have several fine boilings of exhibition spuds!

Newsletter July 2021

Grayshott Gardeners Newsletter

July 2021

FROM THE CHAIR

Dear Members 

Welcome to our July newsletter. I do hope you are continuing to stay safe.

I am sure that you are as disappointed as I am that the Summer Show has had to be cancelled because of the delay in easing COVID restrictions. However, all is not lost. We have a VIRTUAL Summer Show! You should have received details a few days back – and they are set out on page 3. I very much hope you will submit some entries (closing date 9th July) and my warm thanks to the Shows Committee for their sterling work at organising this at relatively short notice.

There also is a Potato Competition and a Photography Competition – thanks are due to Gordon who has done the organising of these. Details are on page 4 and 5.

Finally, I want to mention the survey. It will be sent to you (from GG Comms) on Monday 5th July and needs to be done within two weeks. It is very quick to do, and the feedback will help the Committee enormously to make improvements for Grayshott Gardeners. Thank you.

All the best, Anne Waddell, Chairman

WHAT IS IT? Results for No. 7 & Photo for No. 8

The answer for June 2021 was a sweet chestnut. It was in St. Luke’s church yard. Yet again,

member, Karen Cozens, was the only member who correctly identified the photo.

Photos no. 7 above.

And here is photo no. 8:

If you think you know what it is (and no, it’s NOT Paddington Bear!), please e-mail Gordon Rae president@grayshottgardeners.net by 15th July 2021. We will provide the answer and the names of those who correctly identified the photo in our August newsletter.

MY TOP FIVE PLANTS – from a GRAYSHOTT GARDENER

This month we feature the ‘Top 5 Plants’ of Committee member, John Price, our data protection lead and ZOOM coordinator, and his wife Margaret.

  Allium Siculum bulgaricum Nectaroscordum    This pretty flower with bells, which is very popular with the bees, is something different in the garden, because when in seed head form it looks castle like and remains attractive.
      Achillea Filipendulina Cloth of Gold        This has always been one of John’s favourites and we have them around our garden in pink form as well as the gold.
  Lathyrus Odoratus Sweet Peas  What can’t you say about these prolific and multicoloured flowers which have such sweet perfume? Like most things, we have had more success in Grayshott than Skipton – they don’t seem to like the wind and rain in Yorkshire!
              WisteriaWe have always admired these beautiful flowers on houses and hotels, thinking we had made it when we bought an old Victorian house in Skipton with an established wisteria growing against the house. After two years and two blooms a year, we happened to be in London and saw a sign in Selfridges saying there was a gardening expert in the basement to help you with your gardening problems. We rushed down to find this chap  all by himself, so asked him for help. He said, “where do you live?”, we said “Skipton in Yorkshire”! Thinking this would challenge him, he said ” I know it well – I was brought up in Ilkley a few miles away”! It was Alan Titchmarsh prior to his TV fame. He gave us suggestions, but despite feeding and pruning, when we left nearly 20 years later there was no change. So, when we arrived back in the sun belt of Grayshott (everything is relative), we bought a plant in bloom to make certain we knew it did bloom. We transplanted it into a large pot and placed it in a sunny spot against a large tree stump. NO BLOOMS the next year. Karen Flood assured us it was just settling into its new pot. She was right! This year at last we had a wisteria with nearly 100 blooms.
  Family Iridaceae FreesiasMargaret loves the perfume and beautiful colours, also, the novelty of growing your own, because again they would not grow in Skipton. Don’t get us wrong Skipton is a lovely town on the edge of the Dales where we enjoyed living for 46 years, but it’s not a gardener’s paradise!

As yet, we don’t have any member lined up for a contribution to our next newsletter. So how about something from you? Don’t forget that any member can submit an article; it can be about your ‘Top Five Plants’ or about any garden related topic – the only criterion is that it is about your garden! Contact the editor at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net

14th July 2021 MEETING

This month, on Wednesday 14th July, we are delighted to welcome, via ZOOM, Helen Picton, whose lecture is ‘Daisy Days’. Helen is a specialist grower of autumn-flowering asters. The Picton family operates Old Court Nurseries and the Picton Garden in Herefordshire. The nursery was established in 1906 by Ernest Ballard, the first nurseryman to popularize autumn-flowering asters. The Pictons hold the Plant Heritage National Plant Collection of autumn-flowering asters, with more than four hundred forms present in the collection.

Helen joined the business after completing a botany degree at the University of Reading, and since has been working full time with asters. She also lectures and gives talks throughout the U.K. and is the author of ‘Plant Lover’s Guide to Asters’.

This club night lecture is open to all members starting at 8pm, but as always you can log in at 7.30pm for a bit of a chat, before we are all ‘muted’ ready for the lecture.

Further details about logging in can be obtained from Helen Deighan at comms@grayshottgardeners.net, if you are not already registered. Details automatically will be sent to all those members who registered for the previous ZOOM lectures. On the night of the lecture, it will be possible to admit up to 100 people on ZOOM – so first come, first served.

As COVID restrictions gradually start to ease, we are looking forward to returning to the Village Hall. We very much hope that the August lecture is in-person – watch this space!

SUMMER SHOW 2021

We are really excited to be putting on a virtual Summer Show in the light of the cancellation of our Show scheduled to take place on 10th July. You all should have received details recently (from ‘GG Comms’), and they are on website too here . Here they are again, in case you need them:

The Show is just for fun and there are no prizes, but we do hope you will get a lot of pleasure out of going round your garden to take your photos and then deciding which ones to enter. If nothing else, you will have a wonderful record of your garden this summer. The deadline for sending in your photos is 5pm on Friday 9th July.  The classes are:

  1. One large, flowered rose
  2. One spray of cluster flowered rose
  3. Three leaves of different hostas
  4. One hydrangea bloom
  5. A single stem of any garden plant
  6. One stem of a hardy (herbaceous) perennial
  7. One stem of a flowering tree or shrub
  8. A floral arrangement of mixed blooms from your garden

You can enter one photo for each class, and you can send your entries separately.  You cannot enter a class more than once, and members are asked that the photos have been taken in the month leading up to 9th July. Please send your entries to: shows@grayshottgardeners.net.

E-mails should have the subject line “Show Entry from (your name)”, and your attached photos should be named with “Your name and class being entered”.

The judging will be undertaken by members of the Show Committee, and results will be published on the website. Please do submit entries and enjoy!

GG OUTING 28th JULY 2021

Unfortunately, our GG outing on Wednesday 23rd June to Sandhill Farm near Romsey, home of Andy and Ros McIndoe, had to be cancelled. If any of you would still like to visit this private garden, please do look on Andy’s website here and keep an eye out for days when he and Ros are hosting individual bookings.

Our next Grayshott Gardeners outing is on Wednesday 28th July 2021, to Houghton Lodge Gardens near Stockbridge. Idyllically set above the tranquil waters of the River Test, there are both formal and informal gardens, a traditional kitchen garden enclosed within chalk cob walls, an orchid house, topiary dragon and peacock garden; see here for more information.

If you are interested in joining this outing, you’ll need to contact Sue Wheeler, our Programme Coordinator, programme@grayshottgardeners.net.

As always, we need to ensure we are COVID-compliant and do all we can to keep ourselves and fellow members safe.

WE WANT YOUR VIEWS

This month, Grayshott Gardeners Committee is running a brief survey for your views on the newsletter and the website. The Committee will

be so appreciative if each member completes it …remember that Grayshott Gardeners club is only as good as its members – so please do tell us what you think so we can consider your feedback and where, we can, make improvements. The survey will be sent to you on Monday 5th July 2021; it closes on Monday 19th July 2021.

POTATO COMPETITION 2021

Once again, we are running our Potato Competition at arm’s length.

Class 49 of the Summer Show Schedule

3 potatoes of the variety supplied by the Society for the Potato Competition and grown however the exhibitor wishes.

For the competition:

– Please deliver your 3 potatoes in a bag with your contact details – including name, address, telephone number – and confirm in an e-mail to Gordon Rae, by 6pm on Friday 9th July 2021

– Please state if you wish to reclaim your exhibit from Gordon’s house on Sunday 11th July

– Gordon has arranged for Mavis Haltt (the widow of Mike Haltt, after whom the cup was named, but donated by our ex-president, Olive Robinson) to judge the competition this year at 10am on Saturday 10th July at Gordon’s house

– The winner, 2nd and 3rd places will be announced by e-mail to members and the Mike Haltt Cup will be presented to the winner at a future meeting

– We know that many of you have been growing the Grayshott Gardeners potatoes and we hope that you will enter and yet again help to keep Grayshott Gardeners alive during these difficult months

– The other reason for wanting a good entry is that the President and Mrs President hope to get another decent sized boiling from any unclaimed potatoes left at their house after the event!

PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION

SUMMER 2021

Although our Summer Show scheduled for 10th July has reluctantly had to be cancelled, by the Committee, due to Bojo’s ongoing COVID restrictions, the Photographic Competition will still go ahead by e-mail.

Class 76 of the Summer Show Schedule 2021

‘A Cosy Corner’ – a photograph taken by the exhibitor.

To enter, please e-mail your entry (one entry per member) to president@grayshottgardeners.net .

Entries will close at 6pm on Friday 9th July 2021.

CROSSWORD PUZZLE

Attached is our Grayshott Gardeners crossword puzzle for July.

Please look out for the answers in the August newsletter. For those who can’t wait a whole month…or perhaps need a clue, the answers to the crossword will be posted on the website here on 7th July 2021, in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

Attached to this newsletter are the answers to the June crossword puzzle which featured in our last newsletter. These answers also are on our website grayshottgardeners.net in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

SURREY HORTICULTURAL FEDERATION: GARDEN VISITS ON 18th JULY 2021

We have received notification of the SHF Garden Visits on Sunday 18th July 2021, and they look like a great afternoon out. One is in Wonersh and the other in Albury. Here are further details.

 2 CHINTHURST LODGE, WONERSH COMMON, GU5 0PR. Open from 11.30 am, Closes 5pm.

VALE END, CHILWORTH ROAD, ALBURY, GU5 9BE. Open from 2.30 pm, Closes 5pm.

Refreshments will be available at each garden. Tickets £5 – gives entrance to both gardens.

Grayshott Gardeners Summer Show goes Virtual!

We’re delighted to announce that we will be holding a virtual Summer Show this year!

This is just for fun and there are no prizes, but we do  hope you will get a lot of pleasure out of going round your garden to take your photos and then deciding which ones to enter. If nothing else you will have a wonderful record of your garden this summer.

The deadline for sending in your photos is 5pm on Friday 9th July, and the classes are:

1One large flowered rose
2One spray of cluster flowered rose
3Three leaves of different hostas
4One hydrangea bloom
5A single stem of any garden plant
6One stem of a hardy (herbaceous) perennial
7One stem of a flowering tree or shrub
8A floral arrangement of mixed blooms from your garden

You can enter one photo for each class, and you can send your entries separately.  You cannot enter a class more than once, and members are asked that the photos have been taken in the month leading up to 9th July.

Please send your entries to:

Shows@grayshottgardeners.net

Emails should have the subject line “Show entry from (your name)”, and  your attached photos should be named with “Your name and class being entered”.

If you have any queries regarding taking photos of your entries, please contact John Price.

The judging will be undertaken by members of the Show Committee, and results will be published on the website.

Please do enter – and enjoy!

Why buy from abroad? by Iain Pentney

On 9th June Grayshott Gardeners gave a virtual welcome to Iain Pentney of Classiflora Imports, a wholesale nursery in North London which specialises in the import of hardy European specimen plants, trees, shrubs and topiary.  His lecture addressed the pros and cons of importing plants to Britain.

The disadvantages are perhaps more obvious – given the transport miles and their associated carbon emissions, and the potential for importing pests and diseases.  So why buy from abroad at all?  Iain took us through some of the benefits that we enjoy when we use plants that have been grown in Mediterranean regions.

The first, and perhaps biggest benefit is that we can “buy time”.  Plants mature much faster in a climate where winters are much shorter and growing seasons are much longer.  And plants need to have reached maturity to flower, when they become most desirable to gardeners.  If we choose climates where winters are as harsh as Britain then we know that the plants will be hardy in our gardens.  So mature, garden worthy plants can be raised in about half the time it would take if they were raised in the UK – and, as we all know, time is money. 

Another advantage of the Mediterranean climate is that it has two dormant seasons – one in the winter and one in midsummer, when it is too hot for plants to grow.  Since plants are best lifted in the dormant season, this means there are two windows for lifting, as opposed to one in Britain.

There are also many trees that are being displaced by development, or no longer produce a commercial crop – for example olive trees and grapevines.  These plants have ornamental value, and there is a growing market for them in Britain.

Iain also explained how the issue of importing pests and diseases is now managed, with many controls, passports and certificates. So lots of paperwork, but providing vital safeguards.

So next time we see an imported plant on sale in a Garden Centre,  we will understand why.  Our choices would be poorer (and so would our pockets) if the plant had not made that journey!

Newsletter June 2021

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Grayshott Gardeners newsletter

June 2021

FROM THE CHAIR

Dear Members 

Welcome to our June newsletter. We are inching closer to ‘normal’ and, fingers crossed, we may be able to host our summer show in the Village Hall on Saturday 10th July, so please check your yellow Schedules for what you might enter. Wouldn’t it be marvellous to have a bumper number of entries – the results of all your labour during the long, hard months of lockdown. Whether or not we can hold the show depends on the government advice and the views of the Village Hall Trustees at the time, so please look out for information on our website here and in the July newsletter.

We know that both our June and July lectures will continue to be on ZOOM – please see page 3 for further details.

The recent rain might have dampened our spirits and put paid to some of our walks in the beautiful local countryside, but our gardens have literally soaked it up. Everything is greening up beautifully, our seedlings are being potted on, the trees are abundant with leaves and hopefully the frosts have passed. We have even managed mows of the lawns in-between the showers.


Keep well and enjoy your summer gardening.

All the best, Anne Waddell, Chairman

WHAT IS IT?

Results for No. 6 & Photo for No. 7

The winner for May 2021 was member, Karen Cozens (yet again!), who correctly identified the photo as the base of a pumpkin.

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Photos no. 6 above.

Karen is to be congratulated for her success in identifying all the mystery photos over the past six months – sometimes others identified the photos correctly too, but no-one, except Karen, has had a 100% winning streak. It will be lovely to receive entries from other GG members too and have your name(s), as ‘winners’, featured in the newsletter.

And here is photo no. 7:

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If you think you know what it is, please e-mail Gordon Rae president@grayshottgardeners.net

by 15 June 2021. We will provide the answer and the names of those who correctly identified the photo in our July newsletter.

MY TOP FIVE PLANTS – from a GRAYSHOTT GARDENER

This month we feature the ‘Top 5 Plants’ of our Communications lead, Helen Deighan.

I must admit that I am not the best gardener in the world. I love my garden, but it really must do a lot of looking after itself, while I am weaving in my little studio. Consequently, my favourite plants are plants that do just that.

Common VioletsOr, in fact, violets in any shape or form. I love the way they just pop up in unexpected places and give a little joy. I also love them as they remind me of my wedding day. I carried a small posy of violets to match Michael’s purple jabot!
CosmosCosmos plants in any colour are essential for my summer garden, reaching varying heights and in many colours, adding frilly texture to the flower bed. Growing cosmos is simple and cosmos flower care is easy and rewarding when single or double blooms appear on stems reaching 1 to 4 feet (0.5 to 1 m.) Just a bit of dead heading – that’s all they ask.         
  SchizostylisThis is a plant that blooms when everything else is closing down – that’s why I love it. It is a genus of flowering plants within the Iridaceae family, native to South Africa. Within this region, it is commonly referred to as the Scarlet River Lily or the Kaffir Lily. Schizostylis coccinea are semi-evergreen rhizomatous perennials. They fashion slender, sword-shaped leaves and star-like blooms that flourish from late summer through to late autumn.
Mme. Alfred Carrière RoseOnce again, I must admit I am not good at growing roses – they always seem to die on me! But this lovely lady comes good every year and can be seen flowering in November. It bears large, cupped, rather informal, creamy white blooms tinged with pink, which have a strong, sweet fruity fragrance. First flowering in June/July, it repeats until late in the season.
BergeniaBergenia comes into flower when you need it – at that time when you think Spring will never come you get a wonderful display of pink flowers. They are evergreen rhizomatous perennials with leathery, rounded leaves and dense, erect clusters of bell-shaped pink or white flowers in spring. If you’ve got a shady spot you want to brighten in your garden but you’re tired and bored with hostas, then Bergenia might be just the plant you’re looking for. Bergenia, also known aspigs squeak’ for the sound it makes when two leaves are rubbed together, fills that shady or dappled spot in your garden where so many flowers shy away. And they are low-maintenance plants – another reason to love them.

Next month John Price (who does the ‘techy’ side of our ZOOM lectures) and his wife, Margaret, are going to share with us their list of their top five plants. Don’t forget that any member can submit an article; it can be about your ‘Top Five Plants’ or about any garden related topic – the only criterion is that it is about your garden! Contact the editor at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net.

JUNE  2021 MEETING

This month, on Wednesday 9 June, we are delighted to welcome Iain Pentney to our ZOOM stage. Ian is the Sales Manager at Classiflora Imports Ltd., in north London, which specialises in the import of hardy European specimen, plants, trees and shrubs; amongst his customers is Windsor Castle. Ian will talk about “Mediterranean Plants, Why Buy from Abroad” and will be letting us into the secret of using European plants in our English gardens.

This club night lecture is open to all members starting at 8pm, but as always you can log in at 7.30pm for a bit of a chat, before we are all ‘muted’ ready for the lecture.

Further details about logging in can be obtained from Helen Deighan at comms@grayshottgardeners.net, if you are not already registered. Details automatically will be sent to all those members who registered for the previous ZOOM lectures. On the night of the lecture, it will be possible to admit up to 100 people on ZOOM – so first come, first served.

As COVID restrictions gradually start to ease, we are looking forward to returning to the Village Hall for Club nights.

Our July speaker, Helen Picton, will be talking to us about asters – in a lecture called ‘Daisy Days’. This will be a ZOOM lecture.

We will keep the format of our August lecture under review. By then, well will have more idea about Village Hall capacity, rules etc. in a post-COVID world.

RECORDINGS OF ZOOM LECTURES

Don’t forget that, when possible, we record our lectures too and they are available, after the lecture, for a time limited period if you didn’t have a chance to ZOOM in or want to listen to it again. You will receive details of the recordings via e-mail from comms@grayshottgardeners.net .

GG OUTINGS MAY & JUNE 2021

Over 20 of us enjoyed our first GG outing, post-lockdown, to West End Flower Farm in May. We started with a socially-distanced coffee in the tepee, then had a walk ‘n talk in the poly tunnel with Will Butler, co-owner with his wife Bella, followed by a self-guided tour of the farm where gorgeous flowers are grown. Wellies were essential! Most of us rounded off our visit with a wonderful lunch. Thank you to Barbara Homer for coordinating this visit.

Our next GG outing on Wednesday 23rd June is to Sandhill Farm near Romsey, home of Andy and Ros McIndoe. Andy was the speaker at our May ZOOM lecture, and he inspired us with his journeys through some wonderful English gardens. Sandhill Farm is around 2 acres in area, a sloping hillside with a large area of meadow. The planting is naturalistic and includes a wide variety of trees, shrubs, and perennials. The terrace features numerous pots and containers: there is a small gravel garden and two ponds.

The afternoon visit starts at 14.00 and finishes around 16.30-17.00. It includes a tour, followed by tea and cakes or Pimms + nibbles and there is the opportunity to ask questions and explore the garden individually. Books and plants are for sale. The outing is self-drive and there is a £10.00 entry fee per person.

If you are interested in joining this outing, you’ll need to e-mail Anne Waddell, our chairman. Anne will send out further information, to those signed up, nearer the date of the visit.

As always, we need to ensure we are COVID-compliant and do all we can to keep ourselves and fellow members safe.

PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION – SPRING

Thank you again to everyone who submitted photos in our Spring Photographic competition. We had an amazing 21 entries – compared to our usual 4 or 5. The competition “It Looks Like Spring” was judged by Eileen Bird, past-Chairman of Ludshott Photographic Club.

The winner, who was awarded a prize of £20.00, was Carol Wass – well done Carol. She submitted this idyllic picture of ‘My Garden’.

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Carol also sent in a short video of what Mr.

pheasant gets up to in her garden apart from

eating the chicken food and prancing around with his wives. See the attachment to this newsletter.

In second place was ‘It Looks Like Spring’ by Liz Munson; in third place, ‘Spring Colour’ by Alex Anderson; highly commended was ‘Spring Iris’ by Sue Wheeler. Two photos which didn’t make it into the winners, but none the less caught the eye of the judge with their humour, were ‘Rhubarb and Custard’ by Jan Bebbington and ‘Spring has Sprung’ by Karen Cozens.

Congratulations to all entrants; full details and winning photos can be found on our website here .

GRAYSHOTT GARDENERS’ TALES

Kitty Holden and her long-time friend, Eileen Bond, were members and supporters of Grayshott Gardeners for many years.

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Kitty (l) and Eileen (r)

Kitty lived in Church Lane and outside her front door was a pink, semi-double Camellia, which we think is most probably ‘Donation’. When Kitty was over 90 years old, she moved into residential care near to her son but, before leaving, Gordon Rae, our President, took some cuttings from her much-loved Camellia. Having never tried to root Camellias before, Gordon was pleasantly surprised that they rooted. He is bringing them on and, in due course, will offer the plants for sale to help our GG funds along.

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‘Donation’ is easy to grow and highly floriferous. It is considered one of the best Camellias of the 20th century.

If you have a Grayshott Gardeners Tale you’d like to share, please get in touch with the editor at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net.

PLANT SALES – WHAT WE’VE ACCHIEVED

What an amazing club Grayshott Gardeners is! During April and May this year, members held plant sales which have raised an amazing £686 to go towards GG funds. Rosario, our secretary, had a raffle at a plant sale she hosted, raising £60. The plant sale itself, with contributions from Dennis (our treasurer), Gordon (our President) and Rosario, generated £304. Gordon also had numerous snowdrop sales raising £260. And Anne (our Chairman) raised £62. Well done!

CROSSWORD PUZZLE

Attached is our Grayshott Gardeners crossword puzzle for June.

Please look out for the answers in the July newsletter. For those who can’t wait a whole month…or perhaps need a clue, the answers to the crossword will be posted on the website here on 7th June 2021, in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

Attached to this newsletter are the answers to the May crossword puzzle which featured in our last newsletter. These answers also are on our website grayshottgardeners.net in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

PLANT SALES – AND MORE – TO COME

We have been contacted by three members who have plants or garden related items that need good homes. We would just ask, if you get any of these, that a small donation is made to GG.

Leslia (our crossword maker!) has some spare brassicas and other veg. Those that are ready are Brussel Sprouts, Calabrese, and Cabbage. Coming soon are Cavolo Nero and Swede. If anyone would like any then please email Leslia and she will arrange delivery/collection.

Member Margaret Penfold has the following items which might be of use – a dozen seed trays, approx. size 36 x 22 x 5 cms. and 5 tomato rings for putting in gro-bags. If you are interested, please call Margaret.

And another member, Anne Noyce, will pot up some woodruff for anyone who may be interested. She says: ‘I know that many people might view these as “weeds”!  But I have a good population of woodruff in my front garden and would be happy to give some plants to anyone who would like some.  I think it is a beautiful plant, wonderful, pretty ground cover, and, as well as being evergreen, it’s a herb, so it can be used in summer drinks too! It’s not fully out yet but will be a carpet of white flowers soon’. Please contact Anne via e-mail if you are interested in the woodruff.

Thank you to everyone who, through these sales, help boost our funds.

Spring Photographic Competition

Unfortunately our Spring Show was cancelled this year. Gordon Rae stepped into the breach, once again, and organised a photographic competition.

KathleenBird LRPS, CPAGB, and past chairman of Ludshott PC kindly agreed to be the judge for this competition.

Kathleen was impressed by the number of members who had entered and by the wide range of interpretations of the theme ‘It looks like Spring’.

First place ‘My Garden’ by Carol Wass.

The Judge said that this totally filled the brief with Spring colour. Well balanced and the cock pheasant made it!

Second Place ‘It Looks Like Spring’ by Liz Munson

Kathleen loved the soft colours offprint, soft Spring blossom and blue sky and the smiling face which added some ‘happiness’ to the photo.

Third place ‘Spring Colour’ by Alex Anderson

An imaginative interpretation of the brief. The repetition of red and yellow across the photo was well seen by the photographer. The single figure added further interest to the photo.

Highly commended ‘Spring Iris’ by Sue Wheeler

Gorgeous colour which just shouted ‘Spring”!

We had asked for a touch of humour if possible. These two photographs were chosen for their originality.

‘Rhubarb and Custard’ by Jan Bebbington

‘Spring has Sprung’ by Karen Cozens

Thank you to everyone who entered. There were 21 entries. Normally we would have received about 4 or 5 maximum at the Spring Flower Show.

Beautiful English Gardens, by Andy McIndoe

With Covid restrictions gradually easing many of us are eager to start visiting beautiful gardens again, so it was very timely for Grayshott Gardeners to welcome Andy McIndoe to our zoom screens, to give us an inspirational tour of some of the most beautiful gardens England has to offer.

As Andy demonstrated, England has a wealth of beautiful gardens, with a huge variety of styles. Our temperate climate gives us the charms of four distinct seasons to enjoy, each with their own moments of magic.  Winter, which often used to be ignored by gardeners, is now a season which is celebrated by many gardens planted specifically for winter interest.  The colours and light of autumn, the unfurling excitement of spring and the extravagance of summer mean that all seasons have their attractions, and clever gardeners can make the most of all of them.

Andy began his tour at home, showing us areas of his own garden near Romsey, and explaining how he had developed the space.  He emphasised the importance of evaluating your garden from the point you see it most often – this is where your major decisions should be made.  In reality, most of us make decisions whilst wandering round the garden, not whilst looking at it from where we normally view it.

He then explored some of the classic English gardens like Hidcote, Great Dixter and Sissinghurst.  He observed that the passage of time is a fourth dimension for a garden; structure matures to give an atmosphere and weight that we see today, and their creators never saw.  When we admire these gardens we are enjoying someone else’s legacy.

Andy took us round Prairie gardens, wildflower meadows, rose gardens and plant lovers gardens, all beautifully illustrated with his own photographs.  His talk really celebrated the diversity of the thousands of gardens that welcome visitors in our country. 

However, he left us with the thought that the garden that you should enjoy the most is your own – if it appeals to you then you’ve got it right!

Newsletter May 2021

Grayshott Gardeners Newsletter

May 2021

FROM THE CHAIR

Dear Members 

Things really are looking up and hopefully we can get together before too long.

I have some sad news to tell you.  Beryl Bamford has recently peacefully passed away.  Beryl was Chairman in 1998 and a long-standing member of our gardening Club, a much loved and very dedicated member for many years and we shall all miss her greatly, especially all the work she did in the Village to keep the flowers looking lovely.

One of our Committee Members, Terry French, unfortunately has had to stand down, so we are looking for someone to replace her on our Shows Committee. Terry was especially helpful on the days of our two shows each year. If you think you can help or would like more information, please contact Pamela Wright at shows@grayshottgardeners.net.

Keep well and enjoy your Spring gardening.

All the best, Anne Waddell, Chairman

SHUTTLECOCK FERNS WANTED

A member, Tricia Henson, has been in touch saying “I had a visiting dog trash our patch of shuttlecock ferns last year and it doesn’t look too promising. If anyone is planning to send some to the (virtual) sales, I’d like to get a few replacements”. If you can help, please get in touch with Tricia via comms@grayshottgardeners.net. Thank you.

MAY GG OUTING IS GOING AHEAD!

How exciting that, at the time of writing, the GG outing to West End Flower Farm, on Wednesday 26 May IS going ahead. We, of course, need to ensure we are COVID-compliant and do all we can to keep ourselves and fellow members safe.

We meet at the venue at 10.30 am and, at your own pace, you can explore the farm where beautiful flowers are grown. But first you might want to grab a take-away coffee and a slice of one of their delicious cakes and meet for a socially distanced catch-up in a tepee which has been reserved solely for members of Grayshott Gardeners. After your self-guided tour of the farm, there is the opportunity for some retail therapy – local produce and a selected number of products that have been used extensively across the farm – whether it be for growing their gorgeous flowers, serving in the restaurant or using items in their arrangements.

West End Flower Farm is in Froyle, Alton, Hampshire GU34 4JG. To find out more about the farm please use this link .

If you plan to join the outing, please notify Barbara Homer. Please put ‘GG’ in the subject line of your e-mail to Barbara.

MY TOP FIVE PLANTS – for a sunny summer border – from a GRAYSHOTT GARDENER

This month we feature the ‘Top 5 Plants’ of our Programme Coordinator, Sue Wheeler. Sue also takes care of the content of our website:

Just like everyone else who has attempted this exercise, I found choosing my Top Five Plants nigh on impossible.  It’s right up there in the difficulty stakes with trying to choose your Desert Island Discs.  So, I have cheated, and focused my selection on the five flowery plants that I wouldn’t be without for a summer border.  I hope my list will conjure up visions of the sunny days ahead of us …..

Rosa ‘Constance Spry’Constance Spry, climbing over a pergola at the back of a border, is a must for me.  It’s such a pretty pink, with a lovely rosy scent.  It doesn’t repeat flower but makes up for that by giving a spectacular show once a year.  My Mum was a “Connie” – so we call this “Mum’s rose”.
Hydrangea paniculata ‘Magical Moonlight’This is a really beefy hydrangea paniculata.  It gets to about 8 foot tall, so perfect for the back of a large border.  Its huge flowers start off pure white, and gradually fade to pink, before finally leaving papery seed heads which last through to the next spring.  
Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Fascination’  These wands of flowers have an ombre look – graduating from deep purple at the tips through to white at the base.  It is tall and wavy and flowers all summer.  And you often get fasciated blooms (hence the name) which are weird and wonderful and make a great talking point.  
Thalictrum delavayi ‘Hewitt’s Double’To provide a real contrast, this Thalictrum is frothy, light and airy.  You can see right through it, like a lilac veil.  It makes me want to reach out and run my hand through it.  And it has lovely grey/green lacy foliage too.  
Echinacea pallidaThis is my favourite echinacea.  Not very long lived (I’ve managed to get 3 seasons out of them and then have to replace) but so relaxed, with their reflexed, floppy petals and their distinctive cones that the bees adore.  Watch out for slugs on the new foliage as it emerges in the spring.  

Next month Helen Deighan, who is our communications lead, is going to share with us her list of her top five plants. Don’t forget that any member can submit an article; it can be about your ‘Top Five Plants’ or about any garden related topic – the only criterion is that it is about your garden! Please get in touch with our editor, Anne Butler, at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net, if you have a possible article or would like to discuss an idea.

MAY 2021 MEETING

This month, on Wednesday 12May, we are delighted to welcome Andy McIndoe into our living rooms for his ZOOM lecture on ‘Beautiful English Gardens: A journey around some classic gardens. Lovely pictures and beautiful flowers’.

With over 40 years-experience in retail and production horticulture, Andy McIndoe is an author and regular contributor to a number of magazines, blogs and BBC Radio. Andy works freelance spending most of his time advising on, designing and planting private gardens of all sizes. His plant knowledge, practical approach and eye for planting combinations are put to good use both in creating gardens from scratch and transforming established gardens. He and his wife Ros welcome visitors by appointment to their 2.5acre naturalistic garden, Sandhill Farm, Hampshire during the spring, summer and autumn. Grayshott Gardeners has an outing planned there for 23 June – we are sure Andy’s enthusiasm will inspire you to want to visit.

This club night lecture is open to all members starting at 8pm, but as always you can log in at 7.30pm for a bit of a chat, before we are all ‘muted’ ready for the lecture.

Further details about logging in can be obtained from Helen Deighan at comms@grayshottgardeners.net, if you are not already registered. Details automatically will be sent to all those members who registered for the previous ZOOM lectures. On the night of the lecture, it will be possible to admit up to 100 people on ZOOM – so first come, first served.

RECORDINGS OF ZOOM LECTURES

Don’t forget that, when possible, we record our lectures too and they are available, after the lecture, for a time limited period if you didn’t have a chance to ZOOM in or you want to listen to it again. You will receive details of the recordings via e-mail from comms@grayshottgardeners.net .

WHAT IS IT? Results for No. 5 & Photo for No. 6

The answer for April 2021 was the floral parts of the Toad Lily, Tricyrtis. Congratulations to member, Karen Cozens (yet again!), who correctly identified the photo.

Photo no. 5:

And here is photo no. 6:

If you think you know what it is, please e-mail Gordon Rae president@grayshottgardeners.net by 15 May 2021.

We will provide the answer and the names of those who correctly identified the photo in our June newsletter.

HELP NEEDED AT THE HUNTER CENTRE

One of our members, Belinda Pope, is a trustee at The Hunter Centre (see more here) in Haslemere. It offers day care for those with dementia and respite for their carers as well as advice and guidance on dementia in general. The trustees are keen to develop the services offered at the Centre and one initiative being progressed is to start catering for people with lower need dementia who are still pretty independent but who would benefit from increased stimulation and social interaction. There is a lovely secure garden behind the Centre which is being developed further and one of the proposals is to start a gardening club for an afternoon a week (Tuesday or Saturday) where clients could come and potter in the garden, tend the tubs and raised beds, plant a few things, weed, deadhead, water, tend seeds etc with a little supervision and assistance if required. We are looking for volunteers to help run the club and wonder if there is anyone in the Grayshott Gardeners who’d have any time and inclination to support this initiative even if not every week. Please contact the secretary at the Hunter Centre if you are able to help or would like more information.

SARAH RAVEN PODCAST

When you’ve spent time in the garden and are enjoying a well-earned cuppa, why not tune in to the podcast

 “grow, cook, eat, arrange”; this is by gardeners Sarah Raven and Arthur Parkinson, who’ve worked together for nearly ten years at the beautiful Perch Hill Farm in the South of England. The link is here.

Sarah loves gardening in general, but growing produce both food and flowers is the part she loves the most. She also loves to cook straight forward garden-picked food every day with the minimal amount of ingredients and palaver but the greatest amount of taste! Arthur is Sarah’s friend and workmate who picks beautiful arrangements for photoshoots and open days at the farm, from buckets of scented sweet peas to huge armfuls of dahlias and towering gladiolus.

PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION – SPRING

Thank you to everyone who submitted photos in our Spring Photographic competition. Entitled “It Looks Like Spring”, the closing date was the end of April and the difficult task of judging is under way. We will put the winning entries on our website here; the winner in first place will be awarded a prize of £20.

CROSSWORD PUZZLE

Attached is our Grayshott Gardeners themed crossword puzzle for May.

Please look out for the answers in the June newsletter. For those who can’t wait a whole month…or perhaps need a clue, the answers to the crossword will be posted on the website (grayshottgardeners.net or here) on 7th May 2021, in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

Attached to this newsletter are the answers to the April crossword puzzle which featured in our last newsletter. These answers also are on our website: grayshottgardeners.net or here, in the ‘newsletter’ tab.

NEW E-MAIL ADDRESSES FOR GG COMMITTEE MEMBERS

The club has set up new email addresses for some of the GG Committee members, so that we do not have to publish personal email addresses, and to give a consistent approach.

The ones created so far are as follows –:

comms@grayshottgardeners.net                Helen Deighan – communications to members

info@grayshottgardeners.net                        Rosario Henshall – Hon. Secretary 

membership@grayshottgardeners.net Jane Jones – Membership Secretary

newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net Anne Butler – newsletter related items

president@grayshottgardeners.net Gordon Rae – President, potato & photographic competitions

programme@grayshottgardeners.net   Sue Wheeler – Programme Coordinator and the Grayshott Gardeners website

shows@grayshottgardeners.net Pamela Wright – Show Coordinator

treasurer@grayshottgardeners.net Dennis Homer – Hon. Treasurer

You will see these being used, as relevant, on the website, in the programme, on posters, in the newsletter etc.

If you need to communicate with the committee members, please send your email to the appropriate person using the email addresses listed above.

GRAYSHOTT GARDENERS’ TALES

Here is the second tale about Grayshott Gardeners which Gordon Rae, our President, has told.

This may have been related before in Grayshott. It was a special birthday for my wife, Judith. I asked her if there was something special she would like. As she was not able to think of anything, she suggested a surprise.

Being an ‘incurable romantic’, I gave it some serious thought and finally came up with a surprise present. I bought her something she did want – a new garage door!

The following February we went to an R.H.S. Snowdrop Show in London. It was Valentine’s Day and Judith wanted to buy me a named snowdrop as a present for my collection. She found one specially for me. It is called “Grumpy”!

If you have a Grayshott Gardeners Tale you’d like to share, please get in touch with the editor at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net.

What have plants ever done for us? by Timothy Walker

On 14th April 2021 Grayshott Gardeners gave a virtual welcome to Timothy Walker who gave us a Zoom lecture exploring “What have plants ever done for us?”.  Timothy is a botanist, gardener, lecturer at Hertford College, Oxford, presenter and author, and gave us plenty of reasons to look at plants in a new light.

Timothy started by answering the question his lecture posed.

Q: What have plants ever done for us?

A: EVERYTHING!

And he then went on to explain why.

Plants are unique in their ability to harness energy from the sun.  Their ability to photosynthesise is something science has not been able to replicate.  All the energy we use has been created by plants – either today, or over many millions of years.  A sobering thought.

Plants created soil, by their decay over millenia.  Plants are the green glue that ensures that the soil stays on the land.  The ability to cultivate plants played a key role in human evolution.  Civilisations were built around areas of cultivation, and plants gave us food, fibres for cloth, many medicines …… not to mention coffee and chocolate.

But 2 in 5 plants are currently threatened with extinction.  Given our complete dependence on them, this is a scary statistic.  So is it time that we turn the question on its head, and ask “What can we do for plants?”

Timothy believes there are three key principles:

  1. There is no technical obstacle to the conservation of any and every plant species
  2. Habitats can be restored and rehabilitated
  3. Gardeners and horticulturalists have a pivotal role to play

To illustrate how gardeners can put back things that have been destroyed, Timothy showed us the progress of projects in Oxford that have turned arable land back into flower rich meadows.  He also referenced National Plant Collections, that can preserve plants whose populations are in vulnerable areas, by propagating and distributing samples all around the world.  Gardens, with plants and ponds, bird boxes and hedges can support many mammals and invertebrates that would otherwise be threatened.

Gardeners have the skills to recognise what the problems are, and the knowledge to be able to make a difference.  So maybe the biggest question of the evening was “Will we gardeners rise to the challenge?”

Newsletter April 2021

Grayshott Gardeners Newsletter :

April 2021

FROM THE CHAIR

Welcome to our April newsletter. I hope you are staying safe and have managed to get out in your gardens and enjoy some of the lovely weather.

Unfortunately, we have had to cancel both our April outing to Wisley and our Plant Sale. We will still be selling plants to help generate some funds – this will be at in-person lectures later in the year and our Summer Show on 10th July – which we hope can go ahead. In the meantime, we will sell plants virtually so look out for e-mails with details.

Happy gardening.  Anne Waddell, Chairman

GRAYSHOTT TALES – THE REVEREND JEREMY ‘MALAPROP’, ST LUKE’S CHURCH

(with his agreement and at his expense)

This month, we thought we would start a feature ‘Grayshott Tales’ and this one is from Gordon Rae about our local vicar, Jeremy Haswell. Coincidentally, three of us happened to meet in the churchyard when Jeremy emerged at speed from the vestry. Having exchanged afternoon pleasantries, we told the vicar that we were discussing the fact that the trees in the churchyard came from different parts of the world. “For example,” I said, “that tall one on the boundary with blue grey leaves from Australia”. Keen to proffer his knowledge, even as a self-confessed non-gardener. Jeremy said he knew that one. “That is”, replied the reverend “a Eucharistus tree”. “Very nearly”, we told him. “That is a Eucalyptus, not a Eucharistus tree”. Not a bad guess for a non-horticultural man of God”!

If you have Grayshott Tales you’d like to share, please get in touch with the editor: newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net

WHAT IS IT? Results for No. 4 & Photo for No. 5

The answer for March 2021 was the end of a banana. Congratulations to members Karen Cozens (again!) and Bronwyn Pennington who correctly identified the photo.

Photo no. 4: the end of a banana

And here is photo no. 5

If you think you know what it is, please e-mail Gordon Rae.

We will provide the answer and the names of those who correctly identified the photo in our May newsletter.

OUR TOP FIVE PLANTS – from two GRAYSHOTT GARDENERS

This month we feature the ‘Top 5 Plants’ of our patron and president, Gordon Rae and his wife Judith. Here is what they said:

As Karen Cozens found last month, choosing just five favourite plants is near impossible. We have chosen plants which have done well in Grayshott on our lighter, acidic soil.

  Daphne bholua  Judith has chosen this plant variety ‘Jacqueline Postill’ because of its abundance of purplish pink to white flowers in the bleak month of January. They are highly fragrant and the scent hangs on the still air in the border of our patch of woodland garden. The plant is evergreen, and the flowers are followed by black seeds, which germinate quite easily.  
  Galanthus  The Daphne is followed by a collection of Snowdrops, the true harbinger of spring, although our Snowdrops have a succession of shapes, sizes and markings from November until late March.  
  Camellias    Camellias and Rhododendrons are well suited to the acidic soils of Grayshott. Different species of Camellias will provide us with flowers from early (C. sasanqua) to late (C. transnokoensis) winter and throughout the spring (C. sinensis) in a colour palette ranging from deep red, pink to yellow and the purest of white. Camellias also provide evergreen foliage, but the buds and flowers do suffer from frost and rain damage.  
  Hostas  Judith now has a collection of 60-70 different Hostas growing happily in pots, pans and open borders. The variety of leaf form and colour combinations of green, white, cream and yellow, followed by spikes of blue flowers is infinite and come in any size from miniature to very large like ‘Sum and Substance’ and ‘Big Daddy’.  
  Acers  A large genus of over 100 species, again with a wide variety of size from small shrubs to large Maple trees, with a choice to suit any Grayshott situation. Acers have been chosen for their beautiful crisp, clean and fresh foliage and particularly their spectacular deep red, brown, orange and yellow intense autumn colours. A must for any Grayshott Gardener.  

Next month our Programme Coordinator, Sue Wheeler, is going to share with us her list of her top five plants. Don’t forget that any member can submit an article; it can be about your ‘Top Five Plants’ or about any garden related topic – the only criterion is that it is about your garden! Please get in touch with our editor at newsletter@grayshottgardeners.net, if you have a possible article or would like to discuss an idea

APRIL 2021 MEETING

Our Zoom lectures continue to be very popular. The talk this month on Wednesday 14th April is given by the celebrated Timothy Walker, entitled ‘What Have Plants Ever Done for Us?’. Rarely does a minute go by when we are not involved in an activity that would be impossible without the help of plants. This talk looks at mankind’s dependence on plants for everything from food to film and from painkillers to paint.  It also examines the ways in which our exploitation of plants could keep up with demand from an increasing global population and what we as individuals can do to help future generations.

Timothy Walker is a British botanist. He was the Horti Praefectus of the University of Oxford Botanic Garden and Harcourt Arboretum. From 1977–1980, Timothy studied for a BA degree in Botany at University College, Oxford. From 1980–82, he was a trainee gardener at the Oxford Botanic Garden. From August 2014 he was a stipendiary lecturer in Plant Sciences at Somerville College, Oxford, and now holds similar positions at Pembroke College and Hertford College.

Timothy gives many lectures to groups up and down the country and is obviously very popular and we are very lucky to be able to welcome him into our homes via Zoom.

One quote: “If you haven’t heard him, his lectures are the equivalent of sparkling vintage champagne” Val Bourne (Oxford Times). 

This event is open to all members starting at 8pm but as always you can log in at 7.30pm for a bit of a chat, before we are all ‘muted’ ready for the lecture.

Further details about logging in can be obtained from Helen Deighan if you are not already registered. Details automatically will be sent to all those members who registered for the previous ZOOM lectures. On the night of the lecture, it will be possible to admit up to 100 people on ZOOM – so first come, first served.

RECORDINGS OF ZOOM LECTURES

Don’t forget that, when possible, we record our lectures too and they are available, after the lecture, for a time limited period if you didn’t have a chance to ZOOM in or you want to listen to it again. The recording of the February lecturer, garden designer Amanda Patton, had an amazing 118 hits, (even more than the ‘pig’ lookalike of our ZOOM coordinator John Price!), while there were approximately 70 logins for the live event. You will receive details of the recordings via e-mail – so do watch out for them.

PLANT SALE

Our plant sale which was to take place on 8th May cannot go ahead because of the difficulty of complying with COVID-19 requirements. However, undaunted, we are proceeding to sell plants that we have painstakingly divided and nurtured throughout the winter. Please keep your eyes peeled on your e-mail in-box – and act FAST. The Chrysanthemum Frutescens (marguerite daisy) which our Chairman, Anne, had for sale last month were all snapped up within half an hour!

NO APRIL 2021 GG OUTING

And, sadly, the easing of restrictions roadmap also does not allow us to proceed with our scheduled GG outing to R.H.S. Wisley on 28th April. Watch this space about other GG outings (see your yellow 2021 Handbook) which we hope it will be possible to hold.

PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPETITION – SPRING

As reported in our last newsletter, our Spring Photographic competition is going ahead, even though we regretfully have had to cancel the Spring Show. The title is “It Looks Like Spring”. You are invited to e-mail one photo to Gordon Rae. Judging will be carried out by an external judge. There will be the usual prize of £20 for the winner.

The closing date for the Spring entries has been extended until 30th April 2021.  Please don’t forget that a little humour in the photos will be much appreciated!

HOME REMEDY FOR THE TREATMENT OF BOX MOTH

An article has been spotted on NextDoor Grayshott which may be of help, if your box hedges are suffering from box moth. This is a ‘home remedy’ and an unproven technique to our knowledge, but you may want to give it a try.

With the slices of warm spring weather becoming more frequent, the highly destructive box moths are coming back. They can strip a plant in weeks. Please could you keep a look out and take action if you find any? We really need to act as a neighbourhood on this J. They are fairly easy to pick off by hand, though if you have lots of box, this might not be practical.

Having tried all the more natural remedies, this one seems to work the best:

250ml water

3tsp Neem oil (easy to find on-line)

1tsp lavender or rosemary oil

Squirt washing up liquid or liquid soap

Mix in spray bottle and mist over whole plant, especially around the base. Keep your pets away for a few hours at least. I use it fortnightly or more often if heavy rain. It does smell strong, but works SO well.

DAVID HURRION – NEWSLETTER

One of our popular lecturers, David Hurrion, and well respected in the horticultural world, has a really good website here. You can sign up to receive David’s regular newsletter by going to the form at the bottom right-hand corner of his home page.

And don’t forget our own website here, which is regularly updated.

MONTY DON – WHAT THE AMERICANS SAY ABOUT GARDENERS’ WORLD

Another of Britain’s much-loved gardeners is Monty Don. For years, he has been leading us down all kinds of paths to show us why green spaces are vital to our wellbeing and culture. It seems like the Americans agree too – see this article here from “across the pond” on the British institution that is Gardeners’ World.

Apart from the fact that the dogs are Golden Retrievers (not Labradors), we think it’s a pretty good piece.