Gardener's Diary Post

July 2023

Come rain or shine…

There are more variations of weather, as we miss some of the extremes, but are still subject to several prolonged heavy downpours. Of course rain benefits all, but everything is also weighed down quite a bit, long grass flops over concealing paths and flower heads are bent low. It has also been very windy, blustery, feeling a bit more like autumn for part of the month at least and that too brings its problems with broken limbs and leaves scattering everywhere.


The formal Corot line of willows in the Parkland is stripped and pollarded back into shape – some of the withies or cuttings are taken to be planted up for new saplings.



A pear tree is planted in the front garden near to Henry Vaughan – ‘Louise Bonne of Jersey’. It fills out an area where we had previously lost both a silver birch and rowan on either side of the drystone wall.


In the Front Garden also the Mare Nostrum tree trunk is cleared of overgrown ivy so that the stone is seen clearly again and makes sense of its positioning. It is both an aesthetic decision as well as an aid to the long term health of the tree.


Nursery trees are potted on by the Little Wood – there is a good and diverse supply of juvenile plants for the future. A small leaved lime (Tilia cordata) is planted by the Fluted Land entry gate. Another vision and positioning for the long term.


In the area on the central island of the Temple pool where diseased trees were taken out for honey fungus infection, the plan is to plant Persian ironwood (parrotia persica) and white flowering Japanese Stewartia (pseudocamillia) – both should be resistant and hopefully help regenerate this area with added colour and form.


The AD stone monogram which had hung from one of the diseased trees has now been relocated to a wayfaring tree by the gable end of the Temple of Baucis and Philomen, a shift of scene, but appropriate nonetheless, as an entrance to the Woodland Garden


Dog roses are in bloom, there are plumes of astilbe, false goats beard, monkshood, meadow sweet and astrantia.



On the hillside the old enemy rose bay willow herb is culled, along with vast clumps of robin-run-the-hedge (Galium aparine) winding its way round in sticky knotted blankets over all, and of course nettles throughout the garden and woodland areas. An ongoing and seemingly never-ending task, the selective weeding of weeds.


The Middle pond, the Claudi pool and Temple pool are weeded out. In the Top pond flag iris is removed around the berthing point of the Evermore.


Deadheading of roses is a perpetual round, and in Julie’s garden there is much trimming back and removal of the thuggish Sweet Cicely, so that some formal order of planting is maintained. The honeysuckle seems to have done particularly well here and also over the trellis arches in the Front garden.


We seem to have reached a purple patch in the Kailyard – purple pods of mangetout “shiraz” and the climbing pea “purple magnolia” are the most pleasing results. The French bean ‘Blauhilde’ is still to come and keep the theme (and larder) going. Blackcurrants are coming on along with gooseberries in the hedgerows, redcurrants as well are starting to turn.


All of the yew hedging in the Parkland, Julie’s garden and Roman garden is clipped back into shape, redefining formal spaces in the garden.



We have also just completed another moth recording for this month adding to our bioblitz data survey of the garden -157 specimens collected and approximately 40 species identified – favourites among these include Burnished Bronze, the July Highflier, Bird Cherry Ermine and Soothsayer Dart…