Roger Hirons was the speaker at the March meeting with his talk on “Identifying Weaknesses in the Garden”.
Roger has had many years of experience in horticulture, starting as a young boy taking an interest in the family allotment.
Roger is very passionate about his work and along with a nice sense of humour he is a very entertaining speaker.
Perhaps one of the biggest surprises of the evening was when Roger spoke about being able to identify all of the plants in the garden and which species they belong to. This can be vital if you want to ensure that you don’t lose plants, trees and shrubs because you have planted them in an unsuitable place.
An example he gave was of the rose or rosacea family. No one in the audience realised that the amelanchier, spirea and cotoneaster are all members of the rose family. Therefore the same rule applies about not planting another member of the same family in the same spot which can then develop rose sickness.
He also suggested it is useful to have a garden planner to record colours and development of plants as the weeks and seasons go by. This way you can decide whether your garden is giving you colour and pleasure all year round. Birds take berries in colour order, so succession planting is useful here to keep them fed without the need to buy bird seed!
Roger asked the question “when a plant is in full glory, can you see it and appreciate it?” Try and combine plants that elongate the level of interest in the garden throughout the seasons.
Analyse the areas you frequent. A good border will have something every day of the year.
Roger was keen that people should look to the future, even beyond their own lifetime, when it comes to planting. Some trees can live to be hundreds of years old before they reach their splendour, but don’t let that put you off!
The Gardening Club meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month at 7.45 at Upper Clatford village hall and new members are very welcome.
The speaker for May is Alan Edmondson. The title of his talk is “Beetles in the Garden- Friend or Foe?”
Jenny reminded members to try and supply a perennial plant for the stall at the May Fayre. Volunteers are also needed from 2-4.30 and if anyone has any spare carrier bags please can they bring them along on the day?