I’ve joined our lovely Head Gardener Helenka, for my monthly stroll around the grounds of Grim’s Dyke.
It’s a chance, not only to catch up with Helenka but also to find out what’s happening in the kitchen garden, orchard and grounds generally, during the month of June.
Green springing up everywhere!
When it comes to green growth, you can’t fail to notice how quickly the grass is growing in this warm weather, and this means the team have to mow three times a week at the moment. Unfortunately, the weeds have gone crazy too, ensuring that the gardeners are kept busy!
At this time of the year you cannot talk about green, without mentioning the little fly that gives gardeners so much grief…Greenfly! They’re certainly moving into every garden and, here at Grim’s Dyke, it’s no exception. Luckily Helenka and the gardening team are fighting back with certified Organic Pesticides.
Busy in the kitchen garden at The Grim’s Dyke Hotel
There’s a lot of hustle and bustle going on in the kitchen garden too. The vegetable patch needs planting, if Helenka wants to ensure Grim’s Dyke gets its carrots, beetroot, peas, fennel and potatoes later in the year.
The rhubarb has started to crop and this will be used in the homemade crumble on offer in the Grim’s Dyke restaurant –ensuring fresh, quality produce is used straight from the kitchen garden. There’s also baby lettuce, so this will come in handy for the dishes currently being created in the kitchens.
It was dry April, but thankfully, May was quite wet. This is great news for the gardeners, as they know the fruit trees needed it: If the blossom doesn’t get enough water then the trees don’t ‘set’ fruit. This is a very hopeful sign that Grim’s Dyke will get a good fruit crop this year.
Speaking of fruit crop – Gooseberries are on the go too. They were fed with fertiliser in the Winter and pruned to ensure healthy growth, flower and fruit.
Blossoming and blooming
Helenka and the team have been busy growing summer bedding plants. There’s over twenty Hanging Baskets to plant up too, so all green fingers will be busy here too!
In the grounds, the Rhododendrons are at their prime – especially the deep purple ones.
Taking time to pay homage to W.S. Gilbert
At the end of the May, was the anniversary of W.S. Gilbert’s death. Here at Grim’s Dyke, a floral wreath is made every year to pay homage to the former Grim’s Dyke owner, and is taken to the Church of St. John the Evangelist, Stanmore, where Gilbert’s ashes were buried.
It’s fitting really that his death is marked with a wreath made of flowers from his own garden – a place that gave him, Lucy and Nancy so much joy – and continues to give so much joy and pleasure to others, long after his passing.
To read more about Lady Gilbert’s Gardens and Orchard please click here.
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