Trees should be treated with care:

Last week I talked to a company who were involved on evaluating  trees in schools.

They survey the trees and report back to the local authority.

I was amazed to hear that such a special tree as a Redwood was found in the playground.

Other stories abound about poor siting of trees in schools.

The company produce  a report about the Risk for Children.

Poor treatment of such trees has been the “Status Quo”.

What great news then that local authorities are now required to both survey and take appropriate action with regards to trees in playgrounds.

Let us hope that this can be linked to a greater involvement by teachers  in educating children with a knowledge of trees.

The RHS is promoting gardening in schools.

I would like to suggest that this should be extended to  a closer look at the environment around the school.

One of my favourite memories of my Junior School on the Isle of Wight  was the escorted “Nature walks”.

Perhaps this could be put on the Curriculum for Junior schools.

Children should be encouraged  to get outside and look at the wealth the Natural Environment has to offer.

Plants on parade: The RHS London Plant Show.2015.

A lively show this year.

It was very well attended.

The displays of  Spring Flowers were  a delight.

I Bought.

Snowdrops in the green,Iris reticulate and Crocus.

My super buy was a Lemon Tree with a lemon on it.

Plants 4 presents also had tea plants for sale.

They gave an interesting talk on “How to make your own tea”.

I met.

A gardener form Hilliers Gardens.

At long last somebody has explained to me that Hilliers Gardens, Hilliers Nurseries and Hilliers Landscapes are all run separately.

This was a great day out.

It also spelt out that the growing season has indeed begun!

Amazing Alpines: Notts HPS

Diane Clements from the Midland branch of the Alpine Society gave a wonderful talk about her own garden.

Entitled”A garden for all seasons” it certainly covered the brief.

She made a point of showing the audience that  this garden experienced  a large amount of shade.

This made the wide variety of plants grown even more of an achievement.

I was interested to know that she used two different types of mulch.

Bark for a “Woody” spot and gravel for the sunny ,rocky site.

There are some great small shrubs that suit this type of garden, including Hamamelis, Daphne and small Rhododendron.

Underplanting  completes the scene . Such plants as Cyclamen, Galanthus and Eranthis can be used.

Later in the year Meconopsis make a show in the sunny areas.

I hope to have a go at planting small lilies this year.

There were lots more plants that were new to me.

I think that I may well have to increase the area of my garden devoted to Alpine plants!

New Year: New Garden:

The FT had a feature last week called “Rip it out and start again”.

It was about houses.

However, what it had to say can be applied to gardens.

It suggested that the need to make a mark on our environment is well documented.

Other reasons for change include:

Wanting to cancel out traces of previous owners.

A need to show our individual taste.

Personalising our space.

These can be used to help us think of what we might do in our own gardens this year.

What shall we do?

How about:

Starting a vegetable plot or fruit garden.

Planting up an alpine trough.

Bring in a sculpture or other focal point.

I hope that I have helped to get you thinking !

Getting over the cold spell.

I visited the New Forest this week.

Sunny days with a bit if frost.

Here in Nottinghamshire it is very cold.

Staying indoors is a better idea.

Time  to reflect and think of the year ahead.

A good book for plants is Noel Kingbury’s “Design  and plant a mixed border”. 

The RHS garden magazine has a good article on Winter flowering Honeysuckle.

The first RHS plant show in London is on February 20-21st.

inside I have a few daffodil bulbs that I can pot up.

That should keep me going until Spring arrives.