Well, continuing with my story of the garden I am now moving through 2011. I still wasn't yet in the habit of taking photos on every visit but I have enough to show you the highlights of an exciting year.
My first photos are from February 2011. It was a very good year for snowdrops, photo 1. As you can see here in photo 2, the mounds are defined by large stones now and covered in snowdrops. In photo 3 is the beautiful Galanthus plicatus 'E. A. Bowles'. The flower of this snowdrop is said to be unique as all of it's six outer petals are of equal length, without any green markings, and it has no inner ones. It was first sold at the snowdrop gala held at Queenswood School, Hertfordshire and then Myddelton House Garden on 14th February 2009 for £150. There was a subsequent sale on eBay for £226 in Holland that year and in February 2011 there was an eBay sale for £357, the maximum it ever reached. It was then sold at the snowdrop gala at Myddelton House Garden in February 2011 for £150.
Also in February 2011, the new paths and metal edging were installed in the Kitchen Garden, photo 5.
Moving onto March 2011, This beautiful gate was installed on the drive just beyond the Lodge, photo 6. It is called Christine's Gate, named after Christine Murphy, a former Head Gardener at Myddelton. It was moved from it's previous position at the New River Lawn hedge entrance into the Allotment Bed area. Then photo 7 shows the finished Peach House, Cold Frames and the old greenhouses. All the plants that the gardeners wanted to save were in the two greenhouses in this area until they could be moved to their permanent home in the new Glasshouses due to be finished later in 2011.
In May 2011 the wisteria flowered as if it knew a special occassion was on the horizon, photo 8. There was great excitement when Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, came to formally open the Kitchen Garden. A beautiful cake was made, photo 9 and honoured guests gathered on the Pond Terrace, photo 10. Here Bryan was presenting a copy of his book 'The Crocus King' to Camilla. After a tour of the garden, meeting the gardeners and some lucky volunteers (yes, me included!), our president, Brigadier Andrew Parker Bowles, Wesley Kerr, who was then Head of the committee for the Heritage Lottery Fund for London and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall were all presented with a replica Bowles fork, photo 11. Here is the nectarine tree planted by Camilla and I really do think we should have sold her gloves on Ebay, photo 12, but no, they have been preserved for posterity in the Society's archive. Other delights shown to our guests were the newly completed Potting Shed, photo 13. The new paths and the completed bed that would be used for the medicinal plants found around the garden that had been left behind from the days when the garden was used for research by the University of London, photo 14 and the beautiful wisteria in the Rose Garden, photo 15.
My next set of photos were taken in August 2011. The Wisley Corner project was ready for planting, photo 16. A new yew hedge had been planted along the edge of the gardeners' yard, photo 17. The large yew hedge between the Allotment Bed area and the New River Lawn was renovated and new yew trees had been added, photo 18. These would eventually cover the bare branches and they were underplanted with many different snowdrops transferred from around the garden. In the Kitchen Garden the foundations had been completed for the new Glasshouses and the walls were being built, photo 19. I think the attention to detail with the brickwork is superb, the occasional red brick making the new walls blend in with the old ones. Also here in the Cut Flower Bed was the most amazing display of sunflowers, photo 20. It was a remarkable planting plan which was a really beautiful feature all through the summer of 2011.
In November 2011 work was nearing completion on the Glasshouses, photo 21 and 22. You take them for granted these days but it really was an impressive building project. Also in November 2011, the first snowdrops appeared in the Rock Garden, photo 23.
Then finally two more projects were underway in December 2011. First of all was the Bamboo area, photo 24. The idea was that when the bamboo had grown it would form an interesting pathway for children to run through or even adults for that matter! Then, in photo 25, the Field Bed was being dismantled with many of the plants being moved to other areas or potted up for planting elsewhere in the future. Work on this area would be completed in 2012 but you'll have to wait until next week to see the results!
Hope you've enjoyed this look back on 2011.