August was a very busy month with work but I am pleased to tick several jobs off the list, then just when you think you are on a roll the poor old knee goes Ouch!
I have started the autumn strim, yes it seems a bit early but there is so much that needs doing in September and to stand any chance of keeping up I decided to start early. I have done a lot less strimming this year and am now in the process of saving myself from having to do a lot more in the future by slightly changing the management of the Lower Garden meadow area.
We have started the autumn planting out including some new Rhododendrons in the Rhodo Glade and yet more shade loving plants as well as a lot of new trees and shrubs in the Lower Garden. I have also been pruning shrubs in places where they were making paths impassable such as the Kiwi fruit which had grown enormously with tendrils heading way up in surrounding trees yet it is not too long since I last had to prune it.
The berries on many plants are looking great including all the Sorbus (Mountain Ash), Viburnum and Aronia (Chokeberry). The Decaisnea (ornamental Blue Bean) are just turning blue and the leaves on several species are starting to turn.
We had a visit from a garden writer, an interesting lady who also grows flowers for the cut flower market. I think that will be a difficult job to make a living as so many of the flowers are flown in from other countries including places like Kenya which can hardly be good for the environment.
We also had a visit from Hereford Nature Trust who are organising pond dipping days in the area to encourage the public to be more aware of pond life and how it needs protecting. This means that coming soon there may be a pond dipping day here at Moors Meadow. The use of chemicals in gardens do not help create healthy pond life and is therefore another reason to be organic. Today for the 1st time I have seen a dragonfly with wings which looked like delicate filigree copper especially with the sun shining on them.
The last set date for the garden being open is September 7th, after that, throughout the year, including summer, individuals and groups will still be very welcome but please contact us beforehand.
Plant of the Month: Lespedeza thunbergii - Bush Clover
This Legume includes about 40 species of annuals, perennials and deciduous shrubs. It is named in honour of the Spanish governor of Florida in 1790 however his name was Cespedes but a botanist got it wrong and the wrong version became widely used and so was retained. Lespedeza are from across the northern hemisphere and southeast Asia and Australia.
Lespedeza thunbergii is a shrub growing to 3-6ft (1-1.8m) though ours seems to struggle to reach 3ft (1m). The leaves are made up of 3 leaflets and the rose-purple pea-like flowers are born on pendulous sprays followed by flattish seed pods.
They like sun and well-drained soil, they may be cut back a bit in the cold however ours has survived the recent winters.
Propagate by seed or cuttings.
Ros. www.moorsmeadow.co.uk 01885 410318 / 07812041179