Gardeners’ Blog – June 2018

As I write this blog, the team are busy planting out all of the summer bedding plants around the grounds. We have also enlisted the help of BMET college students, who have been clearing and preparing the bedding around the bandstand, as well as the length of the terrace in front of the glasshouses, all of which is due to be planted full of bedding plants over the next couple of weeks. The Dahlias are once again going to be making an appearance on the Loudon terrace too, back by popular demand.

We also have some exciting news about the trials garden; it will be undergoing a big transformation! We will be planting an array of sub-tropical plants, as well as a number of different Salvias, which will go on looking good until the first frosts are forecast. To keep these superb plants growing strong, we will apply generous amounts of fish blood and bone to the soil. For good measure, we will also be adding and incorporating fertiliser to the bottom of each planting hole.

As you can tell, there is a lot for us to be getting on with but, luckily, we have already planted out the cacti and succulents for the summer, much to the team’s relief. Not only are they very spiky, some of the bigger specimens are also incredibly heavy.

The newly planted herbaceous border is now in full swing and will be well worth a visit. The new plants will continue to grow and change, providing you with something new to see from week-to-week. Lastly, we will also be providing supports for some of our taller specimen, while continual weeding, all of which will be keeping the team busy over the next few months.

During June, the indoor team will also be busy looking after our Tropical butterflies in the Butterfly House. Every week, 100 pupae will be placed in the house to keep it full of butterflies – many species only live for a few weeks. The Butterfly House is now open daily until Sunday 2nd September.

Also, during June, the indoor team will be propagating new plants in our plant nursery for use in the display glasshouses. Seeds will be sown and cuttings will be taken from many rare and unusual plants, many kindly given to us from various botanical gardens via index seminum, or ‘seed lists’. This helps us to replace or reinvigorate old plants and to consistently better our plant collection with new plants, which is already the most diverse in the Midlands.