<![CDATA[The Friends of Honeywood Museum - Garden News]]>Sun, 21 Apr 2024 16:10:02 +0100Weebly<![CDATA[A return to the Garden]]>Tue, 27 Feb 2024 22:12:23 GMThttp://friendsofhoneywood.co.uk/garden-news/a-return-to-the-gardenThe garden at Honeywood has been more or less out of bounds for the last couple of months while major and very necessary repairs have been carried out on the roof. This work is now complete, and the scaffolding has come down. We are beginning to see the benefits as the house has withstood several heavy downpours without leaking. However, has also left the garden looking uncared for: the leaves have not been cleared and the repeated passage of the builders has worn a path across the grass. It is also the low point of the year with most of the plants either died back or dormant. The exceptions are two little cyclamens, pictured below, which are in flower.
Work on the garden will resume in the next few weeks and hopefully it will be looking much better by the spring.
There have been two positive developments: we have sorted out one of the sheds and the council has carried out major repairs to the side gate which has been steadily deteriorating for several years. The woodwork is done, and the painting should happen shortly.
<![CDATA[Recent developments]]>Fri, 25 Aug 2023 07:30:00 GMThttp://friendsofhoneywood.co.uk/garden-news/recent-developments
The planting we did last spring has settled down and most things seem to be doing well. The herb bed that we planted in May has really taken off – the plants are flourishing and looking almost wild.
We have cleared the rectangular pond in the back corner of the garden which has been flooded with water and was starting to get overgrown again. The water has dropped so it’s now easier to work there. We have cleared some weeds and also a mass of dead wood out of the hedge behind the pond which has improved its appearance.
The recent dry and then wet weather has been interesting. The garden tends towards extremes of wet and dry in different areas. The bed along the north side next to Festival Walk gets almost no benefit from summer showers. The rain wets the trees and then the water evaporates before it gets to the ground. In the dry period in early summer we had to do quite a lot of watering to keep the plants going. The lawn is strange; a significant part of it was covered by the marquee in the spring and has had no direct rain since and yet the ground there is quite damp. The water seems to soak sideways from the rest of the lawn. This sideways seepage does not seem to help the Festival Walk bed – why, I don’t know. It is one of those little mysteries trying to tell me something about what us underground.
The new herb bed
The other strange area is the raised bed along the back of the garden. This has quite a slope on it and is very difficult to water as it just runs off across the surface taking some of the soil with it. I wonder if the bed was made like this for a particular purpose but, if so, the aim eludes me.
<![CDATA[Flower time]]>Mon, 26 Jun 2023 10:18:07 GMThttp://friendsofhoneywood.co.uk/garden-news/flower-time
The planting from last Autumn and last month is starting to flower making the whole thing feel more like a garden.

​There is still a long way to go. The next big job is to tackle the overgrown beds along the north side of the garden and the ponds. These have been left to avoid disturbing any nesting birds but they should now be finished. This is for the next session.
The herb bed and the big pots are beginning to look well established despite being planted little more than a month ago
Above and below: the bed by the Festival Walk wall – which was mostly planted last autumn is now looking good
<![CDATA[A new herb bed]]>Tue, 23 May 2023 10:01:24 GMThttp://friendsofhoneywood.co.uk/garden-news/a-new-herb-bed
A small group had a long work session on Sunday putting in a collection of new plants which have been bought by The Friends of Honeywood Museum.

​Honeywood and the wider Heritage Service are currently involved in a lavender project which is part of the Cultural Services STEAM project which is supported by the Mayor of London and the Heritage Fund.  Details of the STEAM events can be found 

​We have created a new herb bed at the corner of the house near the French windows, The central feature of this is two large pots which were bought a long time ago and haven’t been planted for some years. They now contain a collection of herbs and there are more in the bed. The plants include lavender and Mitcham Black mint which were both grown commercially in the local area in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

We also put herbs in the pots on the wall by the French windows. Hopefully they will soon generate some nice scents.

​We also added some extra plants to the bed by the Festival Walk wall. Most of the bed was planted last autumn but one end had to left pending some tree work which has now been finished. Some of the plants we wanted were also unavailable. We have now filled the gaps. Last autumn’s planting has also recovered from the winter and the bed now looks much better and very promising for the summer.
The herb bed and pots
The bed by Festival Walk wall with the extra planting
<![CDATA[Catching up]]>Fri, 28 Apr 2023 19:48:33 GMThttp://friendsofhoneywood.co.uk/garden-news/catching-up
We have had a couple of work sessions and murdered quite a lot of small weeds. There are still areas to be done but it feels like progress. The planting in the bed next to the Festival Walk wall is looking more perky. I was a bit worried about last Autumn’s planting, but I think everything, or almost everything, has got through the winter.

I am starting to think about the problem of the rectangular pond in the corner next to Festival Walk. 
We did some archaeology on it about a decade ago which showed that it has quite a complicated history with parts probably going back to the 18th century. It was badly damaged by the roots of the acer which planted too close to it many years ago. The pond is not in a happy state as you can see from the picture. The wall needs to be repaired preserving as much of the original as possible. Some investigation and a good deal of thought is needed. The springs have risen so the bottom is a mixture of mud and water which will make the investigation somewhat unpleasant, but it is nice to see the culvert under the house flowing again.