‘Flower Power’ Abbot’s Hall Walled Garden
May Day kicked us off this month with groovy garden goings-on as the museum celebrated all things 70’s, and particularly the movement to ‘Escape to the Country’ in search of a self-sufficient good life.
The Walled Garden invited visitors to pot-on and take home French marigolds and climbing beans as well as enter our sunflower competition. Garden volunteer Jo over-saw the sunflower planting and has been keeping an eye on their progress ever since. If you entered, be sure to come and check on the development of your plant if you are passing the Walled Garden.
This month the garden has gone from large bare areas of open ground to lush new lines of seedlings. Bean poles, pea sticks and even two new brassica cages have been erected, giving the garden form and structure and helping to protect against pest number one in the garden – the pigeon.
These structures have been made with coppiced hazel and the brassica cage with sturdy ash poles kindly given to us by those at Northfield wood, Onehouse.
(Above) Tom and Jonathan tie in the gourd wigwams. These cucurbits can rampage along the ground. By training them upwards we can save space and the fruits can be seen at their finest. On these three structures, we will be growing Swan’s Neck and Snake gourds as well as a heritage variety of squash, Turks Turban.
Installed in March of this year the Apple Tunnel has been looking fantastic this spring. The Adams Pearmain blossom festooned the branches early on followed by explosions of Allium cristophii amongst hummocks of alpine strawberries. Lathyrus odoratus ‘Matucana’ and ‘Painted Lady’ now adorn the bare-metal work structure, which smells divine.
All of the Alliums flowering in the garden at this time have been drawing in the bees, but none more so than Buddleja globosa, a shrub which lies not far from the Walled Garden. This huge specimen must stretch 6 metres wide, its sweet honey scent drifting across the back lawn. These tightly-packed tubular flowers are a bee magnet, and the whole plant is buzzing with activity.
Heritage Garden Intern
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