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Written by:
Kathryn Martin-Chambers
17 Apr 2018

As I write, it looks rather more like February than April outside. However, I tell myself it is good growing weather; the soil is beginning to warm up and April showers are encouraging the garden into life.

Walking in the gardens at Wychfield site you may pass by the cherry mound which comes into its own at this time of year with a beautiful, naturalised display of snakes head fritillaries, primroses and daffodils, all overhung with cherry blossom. Structure is added by Twelve, an intriguing, cast aluminium sculpture by Jonathan Clarke. Because we mow only twice a year on the mound it provides an excellent habitat for bumble bees who nest in the soft mossy grass.

Tulips are also about to burst in every corner of the gardens from the beautiful, understated Tulipa Viridiflora ‘Spring Green’ to the flame coloured, lily- flowered Tulipa ‘Ballerina’.

Amongst all of this serenity, the engine house of the garden (our green house) is a hive of activity as we grow from seed many of the plants that add extra summer colour to the gardens. Petunias, Zinnias and all kinds of tender climbing plants will be planted out later in May to complement the permanent planting.

Magnolia x soulangeana 'Heaven Scent' at Wychfield

Magnolia x soulangeana ‘Heaven Scent’ at Wychfield

Of course, spring would not be spring without magnolia blossom in all its delicate shades. This beautiful specimen in the old garden at Wychfield is looking spectacular at the moment. I have my fingers crossed that a late frost won’t come and singe all those perfectly formed blooms.

Before we know it we will be careering into summer with a whole new floral palette to enjoy. I’m really looking forward to complaining that it’s too hot!

Sam Hartley, Head Gardener