Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Guru in the Garden

Today was a real treat for me.  Charles Williams came to visit Belvoir to give us advice and help on a new planting scheme.

Charles owns and runs Caerhays Castle Gardens in Cornwall and is a senior partner at Burncoose Nursery.  His great grandfather bred the original x williamsii strain of camellias at Caerhays in the 1920s and they are the holders of The Plant Heritage National Collection of Magnolias.

It is over a year since I have seen Charles so there was a lot to catch up on.  First visit was the Japanese Garden and the camellias he planted 6 years ago.  Most of these are looking good and have survived our last two very cold winters without too many causalities..

Our next stop was the Spring Gardens.  My biggest problem was curtailing the thousands of questions I had for him, to a few hundred.  To make sure I didn’t look a complete numpty, running round the garden with a clip board, I resorted to making discrete notes on my mobile.  What I hadn’t bargained for was my mobile phone being on predictive text! Instead of having a comprehensive list of latin names I have a complete load of rubbish ......  It was a fun day!

Here are some of the views on our travels

Charles’s last visit was in Spring 2011 when we planted over 250 rare and unusual acid loving trees on newly cleared sites.  These were planted in the baking hot sunshine so there was a serious worry about watering.  The day we finished, the drought was announced and as we all know, the heavens opened – although disappointing for us - it was probably a life saver for those trees.  We have only lost about 5, which is good going. 

I think our Guru was pleased!

View from the far end of Spring Gardens

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