Astilbe Ice Cream

Marwood Hill Garden was featured on Gardener’s world this month!  It was filmed on a sunny June day in 2019 and featured Malcolm Pharoah sharing his expertise on Astilbes. It was great to see Malcolm get much deserved recognition for his dedication to the national Astilbe collection and to Marwood Hill garden.

Adam Frost (Presenter) also mentioned his experience in meeting with Jimmy Smart, garden creator, which he described as having left a lasting impression on him. More information about Jimmy Smart and the inspiration behind Marwood can be read here. 

Any regular visitors to our garden may also have noted some of the fantastic developments and changes to the garden since the filming took place. Alongside garden staff, we certainly are lucky to have a great team of garden volunteers garden who are helping it look at its best. Please do feel free to email me if you are interest in volunteering, details can be found here

It is now July, a time when finally, all the hard work over the past year, pays off. Marwood is looking magnificent. All the careful planning, propagation, cultivation, pruning and weeding of the Autumn, Winter and Spring, have culminated, In superb floral displays across the garden.

 

 

             Astilbe Ice Cream

     

The past few months in the garden have been incredibly busy – In May, the garden highlights included the perfumed Wisteria Arbor, and the Iris and peony displays. June delivered stunning displays of flowering dogwoods and Candelabra primula.  Now in July, the primulas continue to look good, but with the addition of the national collection of Astilbes, Japanese water Iris in full flower. 

            Iris ensata Moonlight Waves                                                             Iris ensata Rose Queen                                                                   Iris ensata Pink Frost

Iris ensatat Moonlight WavesIris ensata Pink Frost

Iris enasata Rose Queen

Papaver somniferum Laurens Grape

So summer is a time to pause and enjoy the garden, learn and plan for the following year, but it’s not a time to sit and rest- far from it. As the ornamental plants grow and bloom, so sadly, do the weeds and grasses.

The team have been working flat out to regain control of some of the most problematic weeds along our borders. These include watercress and mimulus, choking the stream and lake edges, bramble, ground elder, himalayan balsam and nettle. We barely have time to admire the tidied beds before bindweed quickly takes advantage of the new light and space created, but we are steadily working our way through it. 

Areas of interest

In the herbaceous border burgundy ornamental poppies ‘Lauren’s grape’, pristine white willow herb Chaemarion angustifolium ‘Album’ as well as pink and white flowering perennial geraniums are drawing attention for garden visitors. Red hot pokers and Crocosmia are in bud in preparation to flower. Whilst the scree bed is a sea of purple with flowering alpine campanulas.

                               

       Papaver somniferum 'Lauren's Grape'

 

National Plant Collections

                 Astilbe Spotlight

Astilbe Spotlight

Two of our National Plant Collections are taking centre stage right now, our Astilbe collection and our Iris ensata collection. Popular early flowering Astilbe varieties include white flowering ‘Queen of Holland’ and ‘Deutschland’. Pale-pink ‘Europa’ and bubble-gum-pink ‘Mainz’ and the dark red ‘Bremen’ and ‘Etna’. 

 

 

The second National Collection looking good, are the Japanese water iris which are in full flower. This only flowers for a short period of 2 or 3 weeks in July but requires a great deal of love to reach full potential. It has huge blooms in dark blue, white, and pink. We are currently in the process of re-organising, identifying and nurturing our collections until they are flowering.

 

 

        

 

Our Plant Nursery

An exciting result of the garden closure during lockdown is that we have had more time to focus on propagating and growing more plants directly from the garden. This enables our visitors to buy the plants they see and like in our gardens. Including Paradisea lucitanica, candelabra primulas and Salvia ‘Nachtvlinder’ (Night Moth) which have been particularly sought after. People can literally take a little bit of Marwood home with them, and if you are unable to make the journey down to Marwood, we have an online shop full of fantastic stock which aims to be delivered within just 3 working days.

.

 salvia nachtvlinderChamaerion angustifoliumChamaerion angustifolium 2

                      Salvia Nachtvlinder                                                                                     Chamaerion angustifolium (white willow herb)