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Sorting the apple whips

Neil was with us this week, bringing apple whips for planting, which had been kindly donated by the East of England Apples and Orchards Project. Sam, Steven, Peter and Ann dug holes. Then Neil talked us through the planting process and how to prune the wh ...

snowdrops 180221

Not yet dried out

The sun shone and we were pleasantly warm, until it clouded over and the rain fell, again! Undaunted volunteers made a good start on getting the Italian garden pruned back into shape for the coming season. Others of us finished the deadhedge in the walled ...

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Work goes on

Despite the freezing conditions Neil helped us get some more of our pruning done. It is apples and pears this time of year: progressively pruning the heritage trees into a good shape and with the newer trees working on encouraging them to grow strongly an ...

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Dead hedging

Steven, Carolyn, Sue and I made a start on a dead hedge in the proposed new orchard corner of the walled kitchen garden. A dead hedge is a great way to create a new feature, tidying the area, while locking away the carbon in the wood. And we have plenty o ...

A ray of sunshine

Despite the cold weather, there are a few signs of spring being on its way. The Mahonia is beautiful and sweet and the viburnam is also beginning to flower in the Japanese garden; a few primroses are flowering in the woodland; and bulbs are pushing up the ...

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A sunny Thursday at last

What a tonic it was, to enjoy sunshine and a little warmth in the Italian Garden and the walled kitchen garden this Thursday, after all the rain. The Gardens are very boggy and it has been impossible for Roger and team to re-lay the path by the gate. But ...

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The joy of working outdoors

Winter work at the Gardens is great when the weather allows for it. Last week it was just too wet. This week was cold, but we got a lot done. Ann, Valerie and Sue tidied the border by the gate, while Peter and Ann tidied around the top of the Italian gard ...

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Cold but beautiful

There have been a few frosty nights now, so it doesn’t seem so bad that Sam and Richard and Ann and Valerie were cutting down the dahlias and the border perennials for the winter. And this week we also did more planting, to give us even more to look ...

daffs 2020

Planting a host of daffodils

Martin, Lyn, Peter and Ann planted hundreds of daffodils and Valerie and Ann planted tulips, as we look forward to 2021. Elsewhere, in the Glade we planted a himalayan birch in memory of Diana Creasey, to join the one planted for Brian. They are a small t ...

yew hedge 2 Oct 2020

Perfect harmony

We like to think we form good teams at the Gardens… and here Tony, Martin and Roy are working in perfect harmony to level the soil around the base of the new yew hedge, ready for grass seeding by Richard. Sue is confident that the new hedge, which r ...

town twinning

Dunmow twinners

Dunmow-Dourdan Town Twinning Association stalwarts enjoyed a socially distanced picnic at the Gardens this week in perfect weather. Hopefully in 2021 they will once again be able to entertain their guests from the mediaeval capital of Hurepoix in the Ile- ...