Garden Diary

“The impressive garden of a 15th century moated house… where old meets new”
- Jackie Bennett, The English Garden
"Hidden and Romantic"
- Roger Last, Norfolk Gardens
"Inspirational gardens from around the world"
- Claire Takacs, Dreamscapes
"Secret Garden"
- Uniquely Away Summer
“A blossoming romance”
- Tim Longville, Period Living
"Water-encircled harmony"
- Annie Green-Armytage, Landscape
“Perfect in every detail”
- Leslie Geddes-Brown, Country Life
"Paradise regained"
- Stephen Lacey, Beautiful Britain
"Amongst 12 of Best Secret Gardens in the UK"
- Tania Pascoe, Guardian
"Dream gardens"
- Widget Finn, Gardens Illustrated

6th September 2020

Vegetable Garden -We are still picking Runner beans, Courgettes , lettuce, Chard, Raspberries,Figs, Apples and Pears. LabLab is the name of the pretty purple flowering bean next to the Sweet Pea frame.

Walk through the vegetable garden and growing on the wall on your right beside the Potting Shed we have the purple ‘Cup and Saucer” plant (Cobaea Scandens). This is an annual planted last year and must have self -seeded, it is growing through the rose Phyllis Bide.

The yellow rose growing through the Ginkgo Tree is Mermaid.

Cyclamen are in flower in the Dell and we soon have to decide what will happen to the space created by the Chestnut that blew down in the February gales.

The Autumn Border is coming to life with its Asters and Dahlia and in the Stream Garden the Schizostylis  Coccinea  (kaffir lily or river lily ) are in flower.

On the East Lawn the Autumn Crocus- Colchicum are in full bloom.

The lovely Autumn flowering Lespedeza is one of my favourite plants. Bought 4 years ago at Wisley its long shoots with purple pea like flowers appear in September. It’s next to the Bay in the West Lawn.

Also, on the West Lawn growing in pots with the Oleander is “Apple of Peru” or Nicandra Physalodes. It is an annual and after its purple flowers has lovely physalis- like seed heads.

 

The Heron is still a daily visitor and sometimes sits on the hedge above the moat to get a better view of the fish!

Yesterday a king fisher was seen standing on the bridge. It dived into the Moat and brought up a fish. Then repeated the performance and took another fish!! We are a wildlife larder!!

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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30th August 2020

We are still picking runner beans (white Lady), courgettes and chard. All other beans and sweet corn are finished but we have winter brassica coming up under the nets. We have tomatoes growing outside as well as in the greenhouse where we also await the ripening of the peppers.

Raspberries are still producing and we are overwhelmed by the number of figs this year

The yellow rose growing up the Ginkgo tree is Mermaid and this is its second flowering

Cyclamen are appearing in the Dell

The large leaved plant in the centre of the Bog Garden is Thalia Dealbata and the red plants are Lobelia Cardinalis

The Autumn border is coming to life with its asters and Dahlias and don’t miss the Toad Lilies in the water garden.

Some of the roses around the house and in the borders are repeat flowering and it is well worth taking the trouble to dead head them after the first flowering.

A lot of colour in the West lawn with anemones and autumn flowering asters, Sedum and Dahlias

ALERT- in the uncut grass at the side of the East lawn are Colchicums or Autumn Crocus. The flower tip comes before the leaves and emerging shoots are difficult to see so PLEASE DO NOT WALK THERE but admire from the mown grass.

The grey Heron is our daily visitor and the Swans with their Cygnets are still making their home here

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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23rd August 2020

We have had the last of the French Bean “Cobra” and now only have the runner bean “White Lady” to pick. Courgettes are still growing well and the Sweet Corn will be taken out this week to allow the squash growing beneath them to see the sun. Salad crops are growing well and raspberries are on the menu again!! Tomatoes are doing well both inside the Greenhouse and outside.

Cyclamen are beginning to appear in the Dell and it will be interesting to see what happens where we have had to remove a very large chestnut which fell after the February storms.

The pretty pink flower in the Bog garden is Chelone and the structural plant in the centre is a Thalia dealbata.

The Autumn border is coming into its season and it is red Persicaria lining the bank. We had some damage from the very high winds and the Hawthorn Tree has been temporarily tied back to prevent it falling and damaging the Yew hedges- opposite the Persicaria.

ALERT- in the uncut grass at the side of the East lawn are Colchicums or Autumn Crocus. The flower tip comes before the leaves and emerging shoots are difficult to see so PLEASE DO NOT WALK THERE but admire from the mown grass.

In the West lawn there is a very pretty shrub called Lespedeza which is just coming into flower. It has long branches of sweet pea -like flowers and is one of my Autumn favourites.

Dahlias and Aster are coming in to flower and it’s a sign that we are moving into Autumn so enjoy while you can.

We have a permanent Heron in the Moat and are seeing a lot of Buzzards and Kites overhead. We seem to have a lot of House Martins at the moment but the Kestrel we think has moved on.

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

 

 

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15th August 2020

In the Vegetable garden the Sweet Peas have been flowering since the second week in June and we are now going to take them out. Last year I kept the seed and replanted it. It flowered but had very short stems and was not as good as the new seed I had bought.

Under the Sweet corn I have planted squash. Soon the sweet corn will have cropped and be taken out and the squash will get more light.

The Runner Bean this year is “White Lady “and it is a very heavy cropper as is our favourite French bean- Cobra.

Our second early potatoes – Charlotte have all now been dug up and last year they stored well.

The herbs in the Garden have been cut down after flowering- including the purple lavender.

The large shrub/ tree in the Daffodil area is Parrotia Persica and is grown for its autumn colour

The Bog Garden is full of colour with lobelia, ligularia and Chelone all in flower. The tall structural plant in the centre is Thalia.

ALERT. The east lawn has the first colchicums appearing through the grass. This is the band of longer grass beside the Moat. They are sometimes called Naked Ladies because the flower head appears before the leaves. You will not see the little flower head poking up so PLEASE DO NOT WALK ON THAT GRASS.

The grass in the Wild garden has had its annual cut. The fruit trees are Mulberry and Quince.

There is a nest of House Martins in the courtyard- in the corner above my lovely rose- Souvenir du Dr Germain- dark red but now with white splodges.

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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9th August 2020

Vegetables are growing well. The penultimate row of beans at the top of this path are Mummies peas and are being allowed to go to seed for our next year’s crop.

Wild life in the grounds today- Azure, Common Blue, Blue tailed, Red eyed, small red eyed DAMSEL FLIES have been spotted as well Emperor, Common Darted and Ruddy Darter DRAGON FLY. The grey Heron is a permanent fixture and there is a Spotted Fly Catcher’s nest above the WC and the young have hatched. A Kestrel and its young have a nest in the Yew Tree at the bottom of the Wild garden. The Cygnets are getting quite large now and soon will be leaving.

The blanket weed on the Moat is dying back and should have cleared in a few weeks.

In the Bog garden the large leafed plant is a Thalia Dealbata and we also have deep red Lobelia Cardinalis in flower.

The Hostas and Hemerocallis along the path are being dead headed and the spiky red flowers en masse in the bank in the Water Garden are Persicaria.

The white waxy flowered plant up against the front of the Hall is Magnolia Grandiflora and the pink spikes are Crinium.

In the West Lawn the white poppy-like flowers at the bottom of the West Lawn are Romneya and we have the lovely white Agapanthus in flower as well as two shades of the blue.

The Californian poppies (Eschscholzia) are still performing well in the gravel and have been flowering for many weeks.

The four large pots have Oleander in them and these are overwintered in the Coffee Shop but are happy outside in the

Summer months.

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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2nd August

Vegetables are growing beautifully- there should be surplus of beans and courgettes for sale today.

Watch out for wild life in the grounds today- Azure, Common Blue, Blue tailed, Red eyed, small red eyed DAMSEL FLY have been spotted as well Emperor, Common Darted and Ruddy Darter DRAGON FLY. The grey Heron is a permanent fixture and there is a Spotted Fly Catchers nest above the WC and the young have hatched. A Kestrel and its young have a nest in the Yew Tree at the bottom of the Wild garden.

The spiky red flowers en masse in the bank in the Water Garden are Persicaria

The white waxy flowered plant up against the front of the Hall is Magnolia Grandiflora and the yellow trumpet flowers in the courtyard at the side of the house is a Datura- amazing scent.

The white poppy-like flowers at the bottom of the West Lawn are Romneya.

The gravel has had the blue Larkspur removed- but they will have seeded for next year and some of the Verbena Bonariensis has been pulled up or we couldn’t walk there. Californian poppies (Eschscholzia) are still performing well in the gravel and have been flowering for many weeks.

The four large pots have Oleander in them and these are overwintered in the Coffee Shop but are happy outside in the

Summer months

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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26th July 2020

The Senneccio in front of the Greenhouse has got very leggy and been given a hard prune after it finished flowering. We shall bulk up the plants with some grown from cuttings and the intention is to cover the bank and eliminate daylight to thwart any weeds.

The blue flowers growing on the bank above the Iris bed are Cichorium Pumilu a member of the Chicory family.

Past the Bog garden and towards the Autumn border you will see some yellow fruits on the ground, these are Mirabelle- a member of the Bullace plum family. We use them to make a lovely jam similar to marmalade. Be careful of wasps but you are welcome to pick one off the ground.

Beside the Porch at the front of the Hall is a Magnolia Grandiflora with its large wax like flowers and beneath it and in the corners are pink Criniums.

The rose on the side wall is Leverkusen- it hasn’t been dead headed as it’s difficult to reach but look at all those repeat flowers!!!  What more could you ask?

In the West Lawn the white poppy like flower by the Urn is a Romneya and the Passion flower on the back wall was grown from a single seed.

Above the WC is the nest of a Spotted Flycatcher- it sits on the wall and catches the insects coming to feed off the Honeysuckle.

There is a Raptor with young in a nest in the Yew Tree at the bottom of the Wild Garden- possibly a Sparrow Hawk- if you know different please tell us.

 

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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19th July 2020

In the Vegetable Garden the first crop of Broad Beans has finished, removed and replanted with winter brassica. The peas (penultimate row in first bed) have yielded 6 kgs and are still producing. These are the “Mummies Peas’ you will have seen described in the video on our Home page. We are also harvesting beetroot, chard, courgette (never letting them grow to more than 5” to keep cropping), French beans and salad crops.  The sweet corn has been underplanted with squash. All currants and gooseberries have been picked. The strawberry bed has done 4 years and been removed and the Autumn raspberries will be our next soft fruit crop

Walking through the Daffodil area– if you look up you will see the white flowers at the top of the Catalpa tree-at the end of the shrubbery

The path leading to the Bog Garden is lined with pretty Dierma, (sometimes called Angels Fishing rod)- all grown from seed

Don’t miss the Liriodendron Tulipifera (tulip tree) which still has some of its yellow/green flowers- south east from the Huge Copper Beech on the main drive and quite unusual.

The very large white flowers by the Porch are Magnolia Grandiflora and the pretty pink flowers against the house are Crinium

At the bottom of the West Lawn the white flowers are Romneya underplanted with the dome headed Allium Sphaerocephalon

Amongst the bright red Crocosmia Lucifer are the self -seeded Larkspur

Above the WC at the back of the house spotted fly catchers have a nest. They sit on the wall catching insects feeding on the honeysuckle

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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12th July 2020

 In the Vegetable Garden the first crop of Broad Beans has finished, removed and replanted with winter brassica. The peas (penultimate row in first bed) have yielded 4 kgs and are still producing. These are the “Mummies Peas’ you will have seen described in the video on our Home page. We are also harvesting beetroot, courgette (never letting them grow to more than 5” to keep cropping), French beans and salad crops. We have currants and gooseberries in abundance.

The strawberry bed has done 4 years and been removed and will be re planted later and we have had to spray for beetle in the Asparagus bed but hope to have caught it in time.

The 2 large trees outside the Greenhouse are Ginkgo- the first ones are known to have existed 270 million years ago but these are a mere 30yrs old.

The path leading to the Bog Garden is lined with Dierma- all grown from seed and the Water Iris have finished flowering and been divided and replanted.

The Stream Garden is flourishing and it makes an enjoyable meander in the cool shade

Don’t miss the Liriodendron Tulipifera (tulip tree) which still has some of its yellow/green flowers- next to the Huge Beech on the drive and quite unusual.

Clematis are taking over from the roses throughout the garden and the large white flowers at the bottom of the West Lawn are Romneya underplanted with the dome headed Allium Sphaerocephalon

Stay healthy and good gardening

Lynda Tucker

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5th July 2020

The Vegetable Garden is in full swing and we are picking Peas, French beans, beetroot and courgettes. We have had very good cherries this year (from inside the fruit cage) as well as blackcurrants and gooseberries.

The Iris bed has had its day but the Catmint we cut to the ground 2 weeks ago, is recovering with lots of new growth. The Delphiniums in that bed are cut to the ground after flowering in the hopes of a second flush.

Walking into the Bog Garden you will have to push through the lovely Dierma ( Angels Fishing rods) lining that path but pause to look at the lovely Zantedeschia – both green and the usual white on the edge of the bog.

The Autumn Border is gearing up and the Persicaria that line the bank beyond are flowering.

Another place you will have to push your way through is the stream path where the Hosta and Hermerocallis (Day Lilly) hang over the path.

We are dead heading the roses furiously but the Standard rose at the front of the Hall (Awakening) flowers a little later and is now in full bloom

The lovely dark green plant at the side of the Hall is a Magnolia Grandiflora and full of  huge white flowers.

The gravel along the bottom of the West Lawn is packed with Shasta daisy, Verbena bonariensis, Larkspur, Geranium psilostemon and Californian Poppies

Don’t miss the Wild Garden, it is full of wild blue and white Geranium and where they have cross fertilised some amazing blue and white mixed flowers have resulted

Stay healthy and Good Gardening

Lynda Tucker

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