Easter at NGS Garden Ferns Lodge


What a funny old time. Ghillie and I on our own this Easter at Ferns Lodge, with glorious weather – in other times it would be idyllic. The bird song is deafening, they certainly appreciate the lack of human activity all around and are busy with the business of making young and nests. Crows are being chased away and all around are the signs of spring renewal – the oaks are putting out leaves and the figs are making distinctive ones of their own, now in miniature but soon to be life size. The acers have gone from stick to elegant leaf with their canopy like gossamer.


Down at the bottom meadow, our first load of chip was delivered last week. Perfect to hold in moisture and importantly for weed suppression – the briars and nettles are not easily put off. Now on the ground we await the next delivery to complete this job.


With no opening for the NGS this year, the push is on to get lots done to make sure of a really good showing next year. It is important that we are ready to raise much money as possible in 2021.


On the very important subject of bees, John the bee man has been in attendance. One hive has been lost to disease but the other is making stacks of honey. Sadly the bees are not at all friendly so the queen will be replaced in the coming weeks, as cross bees make much honey but they do not make good neighbours. A new swarm will join us so we become a 2 beehive family again. In the meantime, take a look at a hairy footed bee and some of his chums.


With much sun and no rain things are drying out and the new planting all needs watering. The new vegetable garden to be is far too hard to even plant grass, so we are looking forward to rain soon.

I love the spring with all the promise that it brings. Here are some images of some of my favourite things –


Aquilegia, which loves it here and grows in the top garden and down in the wood with very little encouragement – the vivid colours are great.


Camellias love it here at Ferns Lodge and we have red, pink and many colours between, they are just coming to the end, and the plants are putting on stacks of growth now ready for 2021.


There is clematis all around curling about stakes and into trellis-work. One of my favourite is this clematis that has woven it way unaided into the yew outside the back door.


Of course there is plenty of apple blossom and the pear is flowering like crazy this year, and I hope to have a chance at picking the fruit before the squirrels do.


Forget me knot is everywhere in the top garden which gives a sea of light blue.

I am working from home mostly at the moment, with azalea, fig and camellia all around.

Stay safe and well.

Contact sue.grant@fernslodge.co.uk.