Gardener's Diary Post

September 2017

Leaves Colour and Fall.

‘Low cloud, low light – the end of the season.

The Eclogue sheepfold is strimmed down and also the St Just stones cleared around.
In the Temple pond the area by the Aircraft Carrier has been cut back of overhanging hosta and nettles. The stone base has been cleaned of moss making the whole thing sharper, especially as a reflection in the water.

The flower patch and the cobbles in front of Baucis & Philomen temple have also been given a tidy up. By the Temple of Apollo shrubs and fruit trees have been given a trim – the cherry tree in particular here will need to be cut back hard in the winter.

All of the straggly growth in Julie’s garden has now been cut down so that the works themselves at ground level can be seen more clearly. 

Some dead wood stumps in Huff Lane have been removed and the hedging given another trim – and the blackcurrant bush pathway in the Parkland has been pruned along with fruit bushes in the front garden by the redcurrant allee.

By the top pond there has been further packing around the edges and repairs made to the waterways. At least the sheer volume of water from recent rains has got the aqueduct running again and all the ponds are brimful – but a more substantial job still remains – the perimeter edge of the pond will need dug out and reinforced and the stability of the aqueduct foundation structure needs to be investigated.

On the moorland more rose bay willow herb has been cut down before the flower heads set seed. Fingers crossed this will retard at least a bit of regrowth next year.

A more welcome late burst of colour comes from the tufty blue flower heads of devil’s bit scabious which bob and sway in profusion among the tall grasses by the lochan.

Repairs have been made to the little wooden foot bridges by the font and top pond where the slats have just rotted through – these will do for now but they need to be entirely renewed – a straightforward enough job for the winter.

A section of the slate top of the Battle Monumenthas been nudged off by cattle rubbing themselves against it – the whole thing will need to be lifted off, re-pinned and set. The surrounding boggy area has been very churned up by the trampling of hooves.

Rain soaked ground means no end to squishy and muddy paths – some sections of rubber mat reinforcing have been put in by the tree column base Pantheon where the walkways were just becoming destroyed by footfall. Another area suffering really badly is the car park – a combination of lying water and constant traffic has made this whole entrance very muddy and rutted by tyre tracks. No amount of intervention at this stage will help – the area needs to drain and re-stabilise and will hopefully recover over the coming months when it is not being used.

As everywhere leaves colour and fall in the mild misty air. We are in autumn.’

George Gilliland, September 2017