This Month

This Month January 2023 - Sunday, 01 Jan 2023

Best wishes for a very happy healthy 2023. I hope it is an easier year than 2022 which was quite difficult at times so I will put it aside and think instead of the year to come.

My plans as far as the garden is concerned is more planting of course, I am sure nobody would expect anything else. For some time I have been thinking about planting up the area that is not open to the public, this is to shade out grass and weeds so less time and energy can be spent on it. The area does have quite a few fruit trees so it is shrubs of not much more that 4ft (1.2m) that I hope to source for it, I also prefer it is shrubs that do not need much attention and with the fact that some will be in shady positions there could be several Rhododendrons.

Near the bottom of the garden I have cut back a large Cotoneaster right down to the ground, I will let it shoot again but some of the old stems were dying back. If it doesn’t shoot from the base there are a few small seedlings nearby that I may leave but I will not allow them to get too big. You can imagine the size of the old plant as in its place I have planted one Acer, a Viburnum tinus Gwenllian and four Rhododendrons. Yes, I have put in a lot of Rhododendrons in the last 18 months but they are easy and showy.

I am in the process of cleaning some recycled metal for a new feature, it is made harder to do by having concrete on it in places but I will persevere and hopefully get it finished soon as it is for Rosa banksiae to ramble over, at present it has grown over other shrubs which is not doing them any good at all. I will ask the resident blacksmiths to mend any parts which have come adrift and will also have to have help to get it put in place as it is rather heavy.

I still have a lot of winter pruning to do and have not been working through it in any logical way, jumping from here to there which means that I expect I will miss some. At least I have nearly finished the lower garden apart from a few higher branches that needs the long arm pruner on them. I am also getting on fairly well with the upper garden, the warmer dry days see me cracking on well but rain or frost and I am skulking indoors but I haven’t been totally idle even then and have got on with plenty of house jobs although not always the ones that I had set out to do this winter.

It has been great watching the birds on the feeders, lately ten long-tailed-tits have been coming at the same time every day, along with all the other birds they are getting through a lot of bird food.

I don’t garden when the weather is bad, either too cold or too wet, as it is just too uncomfortable for me and everything takes too long to accomplish. One of the jobs I have done is to line most of the curtains to try to get the house warmer, most of them I added two new layers to so now some have four or five layers. It has made quite a difference, I am very pleased that I made the effort.

It is great to see the bulbs coming up, some Daffodils are budding up well. Buds are swelling on some shrubs too, I hope they are not knocked if we have more frosts. Some days the birds are singing as if spring is already here and is it noticeable how much the nights are drawing out, maybe it’s just because I prefer spring than winter.

Moors Meadow Gardens are pleased to announce being awarded Central England Prestige Awards Botanical Gardens of the Year 2022/23.

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