A Thinking Gardener…

A few observations as I travel through the grounds of Compton Verney before work…

Those clumps of Lily of the Valley I brought from home last year are establishing well, I wonder how far they will spread across the corner near the visitor lodge. The shrubs we planted the season before last however have good-sized cracks in the soil around them; just like the parkland soil last week. The plants are OK, but we’ll need some rain soon or they’ll need a good soak…

Thinking about planting for the autumn/winter season as I stroll through the Ice House Coppice. I’ve been trying to find time to sort through plant lists for a while now; must make time… Many of the earlier planting schemes are spread out, too widely spaced, and infill planting is now required to knit the mass together. Some areas need a fresh planting scheme altogether – can’t wait to work on this!

Some of those pesky wabbits have been scratching at the border again, but activity is much reduced over previous seasons thankfully. The plants I removed guards from have so far survived nibbling, but only time will tell. Oh, I’ll just snap a photo of that Inonotus fungus, it’s looking stunning at the moment, and may help our arborist when next on site reviewing tree health.


Those little fuchsia shrubs are doing well, nobody has probably spotted them as yet but they’ll make a good backdrop to a bench one day maybe. The Grebe’s are noisy at the moment too, the young ones looking sporty with their go-faster stripes!

Crossing the bridge, that parch mark across the lawn comes into view – it bugs me everyday, especially as I’m guessing it is caused by an underground cable – if only it had been buried deeper! Nearby, it is interesting how the grass above the old garden wall, as I believe it to be; remains greener than elsewhere. Maybe it is an old broken water-course after all, which would explain the greener growth.

Oh, have never noticed that before! The stone coloured rain gutter runs right around the roof line of the mansion, crossing from the north to the south wing…. It’s well camouflaged, just seen behind the stone balustrading above the portico!

Turning before heading up to the offices, I see the gravel is peppered with weed seedlings; all teasing me. I’ll have to nudge their attention up the priority list; it just won’t do! And then, just before the gun-room door, the seedling container looks a little dry; putting its request in for some attention.

And finally, passing by the workshop bench, the pot of labels remind me the plants they represent need entering onto a more permanent, useable database. The sort of database worthy of such an important venue, something as good as the leather-bound account books that head gardeners of yesteryear would have used.

Ah well, time to start work; emails to check!