Operation Ferns Lodge. Mud, mushrooms and lovely autumn colours.


There is absolutely no need for any rain dancing – we have now had plenty. As old rotten trees are removed, and we have drilled the roots, they have provided sustenance for an extraordinary number of mushrooms and all sorts of fungus. Some are pretty and we await the arrival of the requisite elves, some are dramatic, and some are frankly, quite bizarre and not a little odd…!


We have had to remove literally wheelbarrow loads of them to cut the rather damp grass which continues to grow in the humid conditions and which needs rescue from the many leaves now falling. No wonder our American cousins call it the ‘Fall’.


Ghillie roars around with a perpetually muddy tummy, and groundworks for now are on hold. We hope that we will get some autumn sunshine and can continue with the projects. For my lovely vegetable garden to be, we have dug out tree roots, as we will want to cultivate this area extensively. As a result, we now own a rather splendid and very large hole! This housed the roots of a large but unwell ash tree and having thoroughly disturbed the area, it has yielded an astonishing number of bricks and rumble, presumably from the greenhouses and outhouses that made their home in this place probably around 100 years ago before being demolished. Sadly, the demolishers don’t seem to have bothered to remove any glass before they did their work so this area is banned to Ghillie until the clean-up is much more complete.


The dead oak is now a habitat stump and we have a bonfire waiting to be burned approximately twice the size of the Albert Hall!


Elsewhere in the garden we are on the way with the winter clear back and despite the rain and wind, there is still much that is lovely to see and wonderful ochre colours all around. This time of year is stunning and it is fun to tuck up all the plants for the winter, where now they wait for some compost before their long sleep and hopefully a tremendous display for the spring, summer and autumn of 2020.


As ever there is much to do, the little Dutch barn is growing in a workshop nearby and we are hoping that our new drive will soon be dry enough to be rolled so that the builders who will assemble it in its new home will be able to get onsite with ease.

Sarah has taken some epic photographs of Ferns Lodge in October and I hope that you will enjoy looking at them as much as I have. Sit Rep complete!

Contact sue.grant@fernslodge.co.uk.