Friday, February 24, 2012

Up close and prunable

With the opening date fast approaching, we're busy tidying and preparing the garden for the new season. Following a fantastic fruit tree pruning course by the Gloucestershire Orchard Group earlier this week (thank you again Dave!), we've been pruning our nut trees (battling the cold wind earlier this week - well done Lynda and Pete!) and we're now keen to get started on the rest of the orchard. The new soft fruit bushes are in - pruned and fed but ready for a good mulch - so the restaurant is looking forward to including home grown currants and gooseberries into their menu for the years ahead.

Meanwhile our snowdrops are looking fantastic - a magnificent sea of white covering all the wooded areas with further scatterings across the orchard and borders. Getting on all fours to take a closer look this morning, I praise the fine skill of the specialist; each variety displays such subtle diffferences that only close observation (and time) can appreciate. As a gardener, such experiences remind me of the importance in taking time; so you can get up close to nature, find value and learn about what it has to offer.   

And it isn't just us who have been enjoying the warmer weather in the garden this week - the bees were out yesterday and the Crocuses were wide open lapping up the sun's rays. Good to see... but I'm certainly not putting my thermals away just yet!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Snowshill Hellebores
 Taking a welcome break from the hard frosts here at Snowshill, us gardeners are beginning to compile a regular blog to keep everyone updated with what's happening outside, in preparation for our opening next month.

Since Christmas, we've been combating the cold by carrying out a range of warming tasks around the garden from coppicing to preparing a new soft fruit ground behind the veg garden...more on this (includes photos) soon!

But, whilst we struggle with the cold, Snowdrops, Hellebores and Aconites are proudly raising their heads and being winter colour to the garden.

More news soon...keep warm all!