Garden Blog: Garden Winter Round-Up
Thursday 1 April 2021

“What good is the warmth of summer without the cold of winter to give it sweetness” John Steinbeck

Hello, my name is Alfonso Moreno and welcome to my first blog as Head Gardener here at Strawberry Hill Garden. I joined the team back in August 2020 from Fulham Palace in Putney where I developed a passion for working & restoring historic gardens for new generations to enjoy. I have really enjoyed getting to know the garden and the team of fantastic volunteers whose support has been invaluable. So, what’s new?

We have made the most of the winter months widening, defining, and resurfacing the woodland path as well as making a better connection to the house by opening vistas and establishing some new paths. This was no small effort requiring many wheelbarrows full of donated woodchip!

Preparation is underway for the reseeding of the wildflower meadows in between the lime grove. This involves cutting and collecting the grass clippings and scarifying and aerating the area to weaken the turf allowing for seed germination when the spring comes. We will be seeding native wildflowers such as yellow rattle Rhinanthus minor, often described as the ‘meadow maker’ due to its ability to weaken vigorous grasses allowing other wildflowers to stablish; the common poppy Papaver rhoeas and greater knapweed Centaurea scabiosa.

We have also been busy creating mulch circles around our specimen trees. This helps keep grass from competing with the tree for water and food. It also prevents damage from lawn mowing, a cause of many tree problems, and helps keep the root zone cool and moist so reducing the need to water.

Before the first frost we relocated our Orange trees into the gallery. Citrus trees are not native to the UK so winters outside can be detrimental. So far, they seem to be enjoying their winter residence showing a few fruits developing in between their lush foliage.

Again, I want to thank all the Garden Volunteers for their support, turning up in the cold, wind, rain and snow whilst all the time keeping a distance and staying safe!

Strawberry Hill Garden is now open, please find our opening times below:

10am – 4pm

Monday 29 March – Thursday 1 April
Tuesday 6 April – Friday 9 April

From Monday 12 April the Garden, Shop and Café will be open weekly Sunday to Thursday.

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