As Martin and I started working at the castle last November the only month of suspense left was October and just look at October -it's something else! I have never seen colours like it; the Spring Gardens are full of Acer’s so the mixes of reds, oranges and yellows are just magical.
With all the rain this year the trees have produced a large volume of leaves, which they have retained, rather than shedding early, as they do in dry years, consequently we have a wonderful display. So there was a reason for all that rain!
It’s bulb planting time. I always think of bulbs as a gardener’s secret weapon. I find them invaluable for linking the flowering seasons and adding colour when herbaceous flowers are fading. They are good value and don’t take up too much room. It is important to remember though, when planting, most bulbs will leave unsightly leaves once their display is over, so always place them behind a plant that will hide this.
|Allium purple sensation planted amongst Alchemilla mollis|
This week we've had loads of help; Kerry has been with us on both days working at a rate of knots, and two volunteers, Jackie and Andrew who have also been tremendous. Altogether they have planted over 2,500 bulbs!
Last year the squirrels stole most of our tulips – so sadly we have cut back on planting them this year. I am told if you plant tulips with some cut holly round the bulbs this may deter the squirrels! We will do a test somewhere and let you know if that works.
Simon and Jeff continue with the hedge cutting. They have now reached the main gardens where the yew hedge acts as an all-important framework to the rose garden. This hedge is in need of some re-shaping so there was a lot of looking – standing back – more looking – more standing back – and more looking…. The hedge has to look good from both sides and must have a continuous theme – at the moment it has slopes balls pyramids...
We’re still looking and still standing back – we came to a decision, we’re going to cut it next week!
couldn't resist adding this one...