January – Although snow came and went through to March, this early helping kept us more than busy clearing the lengthy drives for staff and residents + a little modelling too!
February – Snowdrops, Winter Aconites and more poke through to herald the new season of opportunity, and for 2014 an earlier opening of February 15th will allow more opportunity than ever before to visit and see our floral treats!
March – Two Canada geese stopped by for a nibble on the fresh grass that was slower than usual into growth, these were followed by Greylag geese then at the end of the season – a family of swans.
April – A fine collection of plants assembled for our successful Spring Country Garden Fair, a great volunteer effort indeed. It was like being a kid in a sweet shop for us gardeners!
May – Large groupings of Daffodils pepper the ice house coppice, here enjoying the May sunshine.
June – The early stages of installation for Empty Nest at Compton Verney, a temporary human sized nest feature that proved very popular, designed by Hilary Jack.
July – The sunshine lit up the pennants on dead trees in the landscape, our neighboring field to be precise, ensuring attention was directed to this valuable landscape element – standing dead wood.
August – There’s more hedges to cut than you might imagine, but fortunately we only have the outer face of this hedge to care for. Here Adam clears foliage around the young box shrubs.
September – At last all comes together this year, as we managed to cut and remove the ‘crop’ from the west lawn. This should in time help weaken the grass, encouraging more wildflowers.
October – Whilst autumn colour surrounds, the willow tunnel receives a severe prune and re-weave. Turn away from willow features for too long and they’ll head for the moon!
November – A dose of that autumn colour is enjoyable at many an English Landscape, but especially so at Compton Verney. Here’s Adam on an autumn tidy expedition!
December – Better late than never, the banks of the south lawn receive a much needed re-seed and tidy in an attempt to improve the aesthetic splendor!
There have been so many achievements, and so many snatched images, that it was hard to slim them down to one per month. I hope those chosen help to show how diverse our past year has been – 2014 looks to be every bit as challenging! I would like to add a note of gratitude to all who help make a year at Compton Verney so enjoyable, fruitful and engaging. Let’s hope 2014 is no different – it is certainly shaping up to be a bumper year!
Finally – Perhaps one last image to crown the many grounds team achievements over 2013; that of our first years honey crop. Of course it flew off the shelves in no time at all, due in no small part to the efforts of our volunteer bee keepers. Hopefully following their winter rest, our infamous bees will be quick to pick up where they left off in 2013, and later this year bring more liquid gold to our shelves!
Here’s to a happy and healthy new year, where you’ll find us working to bring the landscape and garden of Compton Verney to life once again.
p.s. if you want to learn more about the grounds, head to the web site!