Wednesday, 11 July 2018

A Visit To Christ's College and Clare College, Cambridge

Second Court of Christ's College, Cambridge

Having found gardening inspiration close by with the visit to Waterperry Gardens last week, see blog entry 4th July 'Welcome To Waterperry', the team looked further afield for inspiration, their destination, Cambridge. Departing at 6:45am, and after a two and a half car journey, they arrived in the centre of Cambridge for their first tour around the gardens of Christ's College. Greeted by two of Christ's gardening team, Head Gardener, Sergio and gardener, Teina, they were given a guided tour of the college gardens seeing the First and Second Court, Third Court, Fellow's Garden, the Darwin Garden and the nursery/greenhouse area. 

Summer Planting, Hot Colours

The Fellow's Garden

The Fellow's Garden

Beehives In The Fellow's Garden

The Malcolm Bowie Bathing Pool, The Fellow's Garden

Third Court and Iris Collection

From Christ's College, and after a spot of lunch, they walked to Clare College for the second tour of the day. Met by Head Gardener, Steve, the team were taken around the gardens seeing the Old Court, Scholar's Garden, across the Clare Bridge to the Fellow's Garden, Formal Sunken Garden and on to the nursery/greenhouse area. Both gardens were full of inspirational planting and the team have come away with ideas for plants and planting combinations that may, perhaps, be seen in the gardens at Worcester one day. Thank you to the gardeners of both colleges for sparing some of your valuable time to show the team around, it really is appreciated.

Trinity Lane Entrance of Clare College, Cambridge

Old Court

Borders In The Fellow's Garden

Colourful Planting In The Fellow's Garden

Barbara Hepworth's Two-forms (Divided Circle)

Through The Yew To The Formal Sunken Garden

The Formal Sunken Garden

The Sub-tropical Garden

Tropical Planting

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

An Unexpected Hedgehog Rescue

Hedgehog In The Hole

It wasn't the sight of Ali behind a mower that was the most unexpected sight of the morning but that of a hedgehog in the Fellow's garden that had become trapped at the bottom of a deep hole.

Trying To Get Out

Spotted by the builders this male hedgehog was at the bottom of a hole trying to climb up the steep sides but was unable to get out without assistance. Getting into the hole, and with a thick pair of gloves on, Ali carefully picked up the hedgehog, now in a ball, and placed him into a large wicker basket, but not before taking a few photos!

A Meal Of  Dog Biscuits

Small, dry chicken flavour dog biscuits and a shallow dish of fresh water were placed into the basket and were gratefully accepted. Once he had finished eating a towel was placed in the corner of the basket and he spent the afternoon asleep before being released back into the garden, and the hole was covered with a large board to prevent a recurrence of this hedgehog's adventure. (A call was made to Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital with regard to this hedgehog's plight and their advice for his care was followed.)

A Drink

An Afternoon Nap Before Release

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

A Visit To Waterperry Gardens

Welcome To Waterperry

There are many ways to find inspiration for gardening, online, magazines and television but nothing beats a visit to another garden and today the team took a short trip out to see Waterperry Gardens. Lead by the Head Gardener, Pat, the team were given a tour of these beautiful gardens, from the colourful herbaceous, island beds and long borders to the tranquil silent space of The Formal Garden, truly inspirational and the team came away with plenty of planting ideas.

View of the Herbaceous Border

Herbaceous Border (Right)

Herbaceous Border (Left)

Worcester Garden & Grounds Team

The Formal Garden

Long Walk - Colour Border

Thursday, 28 June 2018

Clematis viticella 'Alba Luxurians'

Clematis viticella 'Alba Luxurians'
In recent years a number of clematis have been planted in the gardens, Clematis 'Etoile Violette', 'Black Prince' 'Madame Julia Correvon', 'Romantika', 'Durandii', 'Rooguchi' and 'Alba Luxurians' to name a few. All of them are covered in flowers at the moment but one in particular has rather unusual, misshapen flowers and these belong Clematis viticella 'Alba Luxurians'. On closer inspection no two flowers seem to be the same, all have four white petals with green tips but in varying patterns of white and green, add to this contorted flower shapes, they make a very eye catching display.

Contorted Flowers

Flower Bud Opening

Different Flowers

Thick Green Tips

Four White Petals With Less Green On The Tips

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Changing The Border And Container Displays For Summer 2018


For the last four weeks the planting of the last display border, 'The Border in the Corner', has been delayed due to scaffolding in situ for important building maintenance and repair.

Border Beneath The Scaffolding
A month ago, knowing that there would be a delay, the 300 plants that were going to be used in the border were repotted into larger pots allowing them to continue growing whilst waiting for the building maintenace to be completed, they have remained in the nursery on temporary staging until today.

24th May, 300 Plants Repotted

19th June, Ready To Be Planted
A Collection Sheet For Hedge Trimmimgs

Having been advised that the scaffolding would be dismanteled this morning, the five box balls in the border were trimmed using a hedge trimmer. To capture the trimmings as they fell a sheet was placed around the neck of the ball , this causes less mess on the surrounding soil and makes it easier to tidy by carefully collecting up the sheet with its contents still inside.

Five Box Balls Trimmed

By half past eight this morning the scaffolders had dismantled and removed the scaffolding so, with the area now clear, the gardening team focused their attention on preparing the border for planting. Weeded, forked through, a layer of leaf mould mulch spread on top of the soil, forked in, levelled, trodden down to removed air pockets, levelled again and finally a porous pipe layed along the soil's surface, the border was ready for planting by late morning. 

Planting The Border

The plants that had been waiting in the nursery were brought to the border, placed out, planted and watered in by the end of the day.
The plants used for this year's summer display are: Cleome spinosa ‘Violet Queen’, Salvia fabrinacea ‘Victoria’,Verbena rigida, Scabiosa atropurpurea ‘Black Knight’, Amaranthus dubius ‘Red Army’, Nicotiana langsdorffii, Didiscus caeruleus ‘Lace Mixture’, Ammi visagna, Moluccella laevis, Pennisetum glaucum ‘Purple Baron', Zinnia elegans ‘Benary’s Giant Wine’, ‘Benary’s Giant Lime’, ‘Luminosa’, ‘Lilliput Orange’, ‘Zinderella Purple’, ‘Lilliput Purple’, ‘Super Yoga Orange’, ‘Purple Prince’ and Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Pied Piper Red’, ‘Double Click Rose Bonbon’, ‘Sonata Carmine’, ‘Sonata White’, ‘Sonata Mixed’, ‘Rubenza’, ‘Double Click Cranberries’.

Planted For The Summer

'The Border in the Corner'

17th May, Removing The Tired Wallflowers and Tulips

Whilst the 300 plants for the corner border have been waiting in the nursery the display border at the far end of the quad and the oak planter display in the Besse Cortyard have both been planted up for their summer displays.
The quad border was planted first, the plants for this year's summer display are:

The structure is provided by the permanent planting, the perennials, shrubs and grass:

Hemerocallis 'Catherine Woodbery'; Artemisia 'Powis Castle'; Zantedeschia aethiopica 'Crowborough'; Rosa chinensis 'Mutabilis'; Cotinus coggygria 'Royal Purple'; Hydrangea paniculata 'Pinky Winky'; Alchemilla mollis; Kirengeshoma palmata; Staphylea colchica (Bladdernut); Indigofera gerardiana and Miscanthus sinensis 'Morning Light'.

The other plants grown from seed and cuttings:
Grown from seed

Antirrhinum majus 'Lipstick Silver'; Cleome spinosa 'Violet Queen'; Salpiglossis sinuata 'Black Trumpets'; Nicotiana x hybrida 'Whispers Mixed', Antirrhinum majus 'Lucky Lips', Ammi visnaga, Nicotiana alata ‘Crimson Bedder’, Gypsophila elegans ‘Kermesina’, Daucus carota ‘Dara’, Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Sonata Carmine’, Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Sonata Mixed’, Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Sonata White’
Grown from cuttings 
Pelargonium'Clorinda', Plectranthus argentatus 'Silver Shield', Salvia 'Penny's Smile', Diascia personata, Pelargonium denticulatum 'Filicifolia', Pelargonium cordifolium rubrocinctum, Pelargonium papilionaceus, Plectranthus ciliatus 'Nico'

17th May, Planting The Summer Bedding Plants

22nd May, Besse Oak Planters, Winter Wallflowers, Tulips and Evergreens

Clearing The Winter/Spring Plant Display

Empty and Waiting For The Summer Bedding Plants

22nd May, Planted For The Summer Display

Once the quad border had been planted the planter display in the Besse Courtyard was changed from its winter display to summer, the plants in the seven containers are:  
Pot 1 - Plectranthus coleoides variegata, Pelargonium denticulatum 'Filicifolia', Pelargonium tomentosum, Cyphomandra corymbiflora, Antirrhinum majus 'Lipstick Silver', Brachycome ‘Purple Splendour’, Salvia leucantha.

Pot 2 - Cyphomandra corymbiflora, Salvia leucantha, Antirrhinum majus 'Lipstick Silver', Verbena 'Aztec Plum Magic', Petunia ‘Purple Velvet’ F1 Hybrid.

Pot 3 - Plectranthus coleoides variegata, Verbena 'Aztec Plum Magic', Brachycome ‘Purple Splendour’, Petunia ‘Purple Velvet’ F1 Hybrid, Pennisetum glaucum ‘Purple Baron', Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Pied Piper Red’, Tibouchina urvilleana, Anisodontea capensis ‘El Rayo’, Lobelia ‘Rainbow Cascade Mixed’, A Dark Grass from Cotswold Wildlife Park (Name unknown).

Pot 4 - Albizia julibrissin ‘Chocolate Summer’, Pennisetum glaucum 'Purple Baron', Anisodontea capensis ‘El Rayo’, Verbena 'Aztec Plum Magic', Pelargonium Ivy Leaf 'Supreme Burgandy', Cuphea ‘Grape Wrath’, Pelargonium surcouf, Chlorophytum comosum.

Pot 5 - Albizia julibrissin ‘Chocolate Summer’, Anisodontea capensis ‘El Rayo’, Pennisetum glaucum ‘Purple Baron', Pelargonium denticulatum 'Filicifolia',  Verbena 'Aztec Plum Magic', Pelargonium Ivy Leaf 'Supreme Burgandy', Cuphea ‘Grape Wrath’,  Pelargonium surcouf, chlorophytum comosum.

Pot 6 - Albizia julibrissin ‘Chocolate Summer’, Anisodontea capensis ‘El Rayo’, Pennisetum glaucum ‘Purple Baron', Pelargonium denticulatum 'Filicifolia', Pelargonium Ivy Leaf 'Supreme Burgandy', Petunia ‘Purple Velvet’ F1 Hybrid, Pelargonium ‘Royal Oak’,  Pelargonium surcouf, Chlorophytum comosum.

Pot 7 - Cyphomandra corymbiflora, Pelargonium tomentosum, Verbena 'Aztec Plum Magic', Antirrhinum majus 'Lipstick Silver', Chlorophytum comosum, Lobelia ‘Rainbow Cascade Mixed’.

20th June, A Month Has Past and Growing Fast