Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Bringing The Waves Back To The Privet Hedge

Continuing the hedge trimming that started last week, Kieron cuts the second largest hedge in the college gardens, the privet in the car park.

Privet, fast growing, is usually trimmed two to three times during the growing season but was last pruning a year ago, see blog entry 18th July 2013 'Hedge Cutting In The Heatwave'. In the heat again, and having to carefully work around an immovable car, Kieron spent the day bringing the waves back to the privet.

Monday, 14 July 2014

Summer Pruning The Grape Vine

The grape vine in the Pump Quad is growing at rather a rapid rate, leaving the support wires behind and pointing out from the pergola in all directions.

In order to keep the vine compact and tidy Ali gives it a summer prune. The long, non flowering laterals are pruned back to four or five leaves and the shoots, containing the newly developing grapes, are shortened to two leaves beyond the truss of fruit, allowing a greater exposure to sunlight.

Friday, 11 July 2014

Hedge Trimming Begins In Earnest

The hedge trimming has begun in earnest this week. The team usually start cutting the many college hedges in June, but the start has been somewhat delayed by preparing the gardens for the ball which was held a few weeks ago.

Callum and Joss started off the hedge trimming season on Tuesday, Joss with the large yew hedge along the Provost's drive and Callum with the small privet hedge outside one of the college's properties.

Simon joined them today by trimming one of the other yew hedges that border the car park. The team will spend the next month working their way around the college grounds until the last hedge is cut.

Thursday, 3 July 2014

The Loss Of Two Princeton Elms

Not only have the gardens lost the beautiful tree 'Chitalpa tashkentensis', see yesterday's blog entry, but two Elm trees have had to be cut down recently. Following heavy overnight rain on the 26th May, the team, upon their arrival the following morning, were greeted with the sad sight of one of the Princeton Elms having been badly damaged.

The damage caused by the heavy rain meant that the tree had to be cut down immediately. This loss, along with one of the other two remaining Princeton Elms which was dying, leaves just one of these Elms in the garden

Following their removal, the roots were ground out, leaving two empty tree circles in the lawn where they once stood. Joss spent this morning repairing the lawn by changing the circles to squares, filling the areas with top soil and laying turf on top before setting up a sprinkler to water the newly laid turf in.  

Wednesday, 2 July 2014

The Removal Of A Leaning 'Chitalpa Tashkentensis'

The Chitalpa tashkentensis, Desert Willow, has been gradually leaning further and further out of the border, with the greatest movement occurring last night following the heavy rainfall. Having assessed the risk to visitors, students and staff it was deemed too dangerous to leave in place, unfortunately it was just about to flower, see blog entry 2nd August 2013 'Chitalpa tashkentensis'.

Simon and Ali, having made the decision, set about cutting the tree down, leaving a small stump in the border in the hope it will reshoot.

After The Ball

All signs that the Tercentenary ball that was held at the college last Friday have almost all gone, just the safety barriers, a number of large tarpaulin, a deflated inflatable 'Ministry Of Sound' marquee, a few portable toilets, Grundon bins and the odd pallet or three remain. Where they once stood, the marquees have left their imprint on the lawns, large light green areas of grass deprived of sunlight for a week. With no rain forecast over the next few days, Joss has set up sprinklers on all the affected lawns to give them a thorough watering and help bring them back to a healthy, dark green colour again.

Monday, 30 June 2014

An Empty Greenhouse

The borders and pot displays have all been planted up leaving just a few plants in the greenhouse. These plants, suffering in the high temperatures, have been moved outside to reside in the cold frames until a place in the gardens is found. The greenhouse now stands empty waiting for its annual deep clean, the temperature will need to drop before Ali attempts that.