All talks are held at Folkingham Village Hall.
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Thursday 23 Jan, AGM, 7pm
AGM (N.B. from 7pm, not 7.30),
followed by a talk by KEVIN HUGHES, “California, Oregon and Some Trilliums”
Kevin is a very experienced nurseryman whose nursery, Kevin Hughes Plants, is now based in the famous gardens at Heale House, north of Salisbury (home of the Rasch family). He has an extensive list of choice trees, shrubs and herbaceous perennials, many of them not widely available elsewhere, alongside a solid range of tried and tested old favourites. His talk recounts his explorations in search of the charismatic native plants found in the wild mountainous areas of western North America.
Thursday 27 March, 7.30pm
ROB COLE, of Meadow Farm Garden Nursery: “Summer Perennials”
Rob and his wife Diane now run Meadow Farm Garden and Nursery at Feckenham, Worcestershire, having moved their plant-growing business there from Birmingham in 1998 in search of extra space and a more rural lifestyle. They grow 95% of their own stock, in peat-free compost. The nursery itself is not normally open to the public, most of their sales being made at plant fairs and garden shows throughout the Midlands, but their extensive, intricately planted 1-acre garden is frequently open. They also have a one and a quarter acre wildflower meadow, unploughed for over 110 years and thankfully “unimproved” (in the agricultural sense – they have enriched the habitat with hundreds of cowslips and primroses raised by seed from a few already growing in the meadow); the Coles now manage as it and their newly planted small spinneys as a nature reserve.
NB Thursday 29 May, 7.30pm (Rescheduled from 22 May because of the Election)
PAM TATAM, “Combinations, Underwear and a few Suspenders”
Pam is a familiar face at Folkingham, having visited us several times over the years and treated us to several entertaining talks, though perhaps none with quite such a provocative title! (We believe this one’s really about plant associations, ground-cover and some climbers, but that’s not half so catchy!) Sadly Pam and Mark have now closed the excellent nursery that they ran at their home, Hall Farm at Harpswell, just north of Lincoln. But their superb 3-acre garden (starred in The Good Gardens Guide) is still open at all times (is there still a velociraptor in the undergrowth? – I must ask!), plus there are three crafstmen’s studios to visit! Website: Hall Farm Garden.
Saturday 14 June
COACH OUTING to Worcestershire & Warwickshire: visiting Rob & Diane Cole’s MEADOW FARM GARDEN NURSERY (see March, above) and then COUGHTON COURT, (pronounced Coat–un) a fabulous house, still in the hands of the Throckmorton family after 600 years! The gardens, by contrast, are surprisingly recent: developed since 1991, they are now reaching maturity and have been described as “breathtaking”. They feature a walled garden, formal courtyard, red-twigged lime walks leading to perfumed sunken rose gardens, a rose labyrinth, a bog garden, an early summer garden featuring wisterias and peonies, an orchard and a chemical-free vegetable garden growing traditional local cultivars.
GARDEN VISIT Thursday 5 June, 6pm to the garden of JILL LEWIS, Priory Cottage, Hough on the Hill
Thursday 25 Sept, 7.30pm
VANESSA COOK, of Stillingfleet Lodge Gardens & Nurseries: “My Garden Through the Year”
Vanessa makes a welcome and overdue return to SLGS. Her lovely garden and excellent nursery in the peaceful lowlands just 6 miles York was, for many years, home to the Plant Heritage (NCCPG) National Plant Collection of Pulmonaria (lungwort), and plants for shade are a particular speciality. Unusual perennials abound, and many can be seen used in inspiring associations in the various cleverly contrasting compartments of her delightful cottage garden. Well worth a long trip to visit, Stillingfleet Lodge is an RHS Partner Garden and holds various special RHS events. Excellent and informative website.
Thursday 27 Nov, 7.30pm
SIMON WHITE of Peter Beales’ Roses: “The A–Z of Roses”
The late Peter Beales, who died in January 2013, was a remarkable rosarian and a champion of old roses. He was one of Britain’s leading rose growers and rose breeders, and the author of many classic and authoritative works on roses of all kinds, from all eras. His multi-gold-medal-winning Norfolk nursery continues to thrive and to carry on his good work. Simon White is the company’s Customer Service Manager and has worked for Beales for 30 years, and his A–Z of Roses isn’t a simple alphabetical list of cultivars or species, an ‘Albertine’ to ‘Zéphirine Drouhin’, as you might think, nor yet an alba to … erm, xanthina (well, it sounds like Z!). It covers many aspects of rose growing and companion planting as well. Simon has been described as a “storehouse of rose-related facts and insider stories” so if there’s anything you need to know about roses, he’s the man to ask!