A snapshot of Spring – Alpine & Woodland – Kew Gardens, mostly

Here’s another of those galleries, a tumble-jumble of images but all taken in the last week and mostly at Kew Gardens.

I did pop over to RHS Wisley on Saturday for their Spring Plant Fair – and bought a selection of Martagon Lilies from Jacques Armandes International and some brightly (brave, they called them) coloured raspberry foxgloves from The Botanic Nursery in Wiltshire called Polkadot Princess!!

Two visits to Kew however, one to catch the Magnolias and the second, on Saturday also, to visit the Alpine Nursery Open Day and revisit the Davies Alpine House. A series of glasshouses, some with open sides, some enclosed as the plants prefer, and a dazzling range of plants (few in flower – the best were already on display in the Davies Alpine House itself) but I did wonder at the collection of Fritillaries, Tulips, Iris, Saxifrage and Sempervivums.

On Friday (and the photographs are on Twitter and Facebook [probably by now]) I was volunteering at Hampton Court Palace with the Historic Roses Group to plant a rose bed to celebrate their 25th Anniversary and the the same for the Hampton Court Flower Show, another 25 years. The Palace had cleared near-half of bed beneath the south wall, admittedly of struggling roses, double dug and manured the ground though we added extra fertiliser ourselves and dug over the beds once again – lots and lots of clumps of sticky clay.

The roses, from Peter Beales, were all bare-root and we used a cocktail of mycorrhizal fungi, in solution with water-holding gel, to coat their roots with a rich, yeasty dark brown goo, prior to planting. I’ll have to get the full list of varieties from HRG and try and pick up my photographs from my iPod to these pages, so you can see what we were doing. The next time then.

In the meantime, it’s an alpine and woodland tour of Kew – I think I’ve captioned each of the images though make no further comment – a picture speaks a thousand words etc., etc.,

I promise I will get wordy soon enough – I have several workshops for Petersham Nurseries to prepare for in the coming weeks – a day long exploration of Organic Gardening, the Shady Garden in Spring and Summer and the Scented Garden too. Pruning Perennial Plants is another, from the Chelsea Chop to all manner of techniques to prolong the fireworks, so I’ll definitely be busy and the fruits of my labours will be here for your further delight and delectation!

Sunshine and blue skies, here in Teddington and we’ll enjoy it while it lasts. I hope you have a good day too, folks.

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