school garden

school garden

Sunday, 8 January 2017

"Nothing ever goes away..

until it has taught us what we need to know"

Pema Chodian

An American Tibetan Buddhist Nun

The garden has been ticking over during the Christmas and New Year festivities.  The soil has been too wet to work without causing damage so tidying up here and there, routine maintenance and repairing has been the order of the day.  There are still a lot of flowers out and have been over the New Year.

Geranium 'Rozanne' is still in flower much to the pleasure of the few bees still about

Bright Calendula's

Even Strawberries are flowering and forming!

The last of the raspberries- the blackbirds haven't found them yet!

The peanut butter plant is thriving in the shelter of banana plants and gingers

Colourful 'Salvia' still flowering in profusion

Attractive seed head of the ginger giving some winter interest

Plenty of interest in the grass garden

The grass garden

Iris reticulata appearing under the paper bark birch tree

In the Jurassic garden the chain ferns are slowing increasing in size.  By next summer they should look spectacular.  The name is derived from the delicate marking on the fronds

Chain Fern

One of the tit nest boxes had been destroyed by a Great-spotted Woodpecker who enlarged the hole looking for food inside.  They will often take young chicks from a box in the breeding season.  A new front has been made for the box and then re-positioned.

The damaged front to the nest box

All made good and ready for 2017!

Over the past two years the willow classroom has slowly been dying off on one corner of the structure.  This is because the Field Maples which were planted prior to the willow classroom have now grown so large and tall that they are starving the willow of light for photosynthesis of the leaves and also taking ground water away which willow thrives on.  These Field Maples have been cut down and then fresh Willow can be sourced, rooted and planted to replace to dead area.  The Field Maples trunks will be coppiced at ground level to encourage new growth but this will now be kept at a reasonable height to avoid further damage to the classroom.

The smaller sticks and branches will be fed into our shredder and used on the garden and the larger branches will be sawn into sensible lengths and positioned in the woodland walk to create a wildlife hotel which beetles will favour.  Nothing will be wasted or removed from the garden!

The first stage of managing the Field Maples

Nearby the Hazel has produced catkins

The first Hazel catkins of the year.

Finally in the shelter of the garden amongst the woodland walk the daffodils are about to burst into flower.  This is always a high point of the year in the school garden.  Hopefully the next blog update will feature daffodils in flower!

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