I am starting this month’s missive with a reminder of our ANNUAL PLANT SALE, which takes place on Saturday 9th May between 10am-12.30pm at the Charter Hall car park (inside in Hop Pocket if wet). We hope once again to have a good selection of plants for your pots and hanging baskets. Vegetables and Perennials. We hope to see you all there. If you have any plants you would like to go into the sale please bring them along by 9am on the day or let me know by 5pm the evening before if you need them collected.

 

The season is now well under way and by the time you read this some of us will have enjoyed the first outing of the year. I still find it a challenge writing one month in advance and making sure the appropriate information appears at the right time. So I will report back in the next issue.

 

The Rose Show which is the first of our 3 shows, is on the 16th June and as always the weather will be a determining factor in the success or otherwise of our roses. I will remind you again in the May issue but the necessary details for entries to the show can be found in your schedule.

 

Other important diary dates for you to note are:

Closing Date for Rose Show- 13th June

Closing Date for the Annual Outing (Hyde Hall) – 4th June

 

We have recently been asked to consider entering the village initiative “SMARDEN’S SPORTING SEPTEMBER”; I think as a Society we will be considering entering a Scarecrow or two. If you have any ideas or a burning desire to help produce a Scarecrow, please let me know, as your input will be gratefully received.

 

Now here is a challenge for us all!

I recently received a request from Richard Bucknall who is a researcher with Wyebugs. (Yes Wyebugs) They are a small company specializing in the rearing and supply of predatory and parasitoid insects for botanical gardens and producers of glasshouse crops. (Well someone has to do it I guess!) This year Richard is researching the scarlet Lily beetle (Lilioceris Lilii) feeding upon Lily plants. We can help Richard in his quest by collecting any adult beetles we see in a jam jar with a small amount of lightly moistened kitchen paper and a paper lid fixed with a rubber band, and keep it in a cool dark place before contacting Richard in one of the following ways.

Telephone 01233 813130

Mobile 07754 069139

Email richardbucknall@wyebugs.co.uk

At present no cultures of this pest species are available in the UK and there is some urgency to build up a stock of several hundred beetles for work to be carried out this summer. The adult beetles will most likely be appearing in the garden now and will start to produce eggs from the end of April.

 

Finally after all that bug hunting you might like a day out to see the Bluebells, I can highly recommend Hole Park Rolvenden for a spectacular display around the end of April /early May. You can keep a check of the best time to go on their website www.Holepark.com

 

Jean Boorman

 

 

Programme of Events for 2015

 

DATE                                                        EVENT

 

Tues 3rd March, 7.30pm                   SPRING TALK- Charter Hall:

                                                                  “ Godinton House and Gardens, throughout the year”

                                                                    Nick Sandford, Manager for Godinton Trust

 

Sat 4th April, 10.00-11.00am          Plantlet Distribution for Chairman’s Challenge,

                                                                   ‘ Flying Horse” Forecourt.

 

Sat 25th April, 9.15am- 1pm           HALF-DAY (MORNING) OUTING (by mini bus) to Great Dixter         

                                                                    (Garden only), Northiam, East Sussex

 

Sat 9th May, 10.00-12.30pm           PLANT SALE: Charter Hall as in 2014.

                                                                    In Car Park, or Hop Pocket, if wet.

 

Tues 16th June, evening                   ROSE SHOW- Charter Hall

 

Sat 4th July, 9.00am-5.30pm          ANNUAL OUTING (by coach)

                                                                   Hyde Hall Gardens (RHS) Chelmsford, Essex.

 

Sat 11th July, from 10.00am           SUMMER SHOW –Charter Hall

 

Sat 15th August 1.00- 5.00pm       HALF-DAY (AFTERNOON) OUTING (mini bus) to Emmetts (NT)

                                                                   Sevenoaks, Kent.

 

Tues 1st Sept, evening                      AUTUMN SHOW – Charter Hall

 

 

Tues 20th Oct, 7.30pm                     AUTUMN TALK – Charter Hall

                                                                  “ Growing for Showing” by Gordon Francis

                                                                   Experience judge and speaker from the Kent Federation of

                                                                   Horticultural Societies.

 

Fri 20th Nov, evening                        A.G.M. and SUPPER – Hop Pocket, Charter Hall.

 

N.B. All Events (except the Shows) are open to non-members

 

All events will be publicised in the Parish Magazine and via Poster around the village, all are welcome.

 

NEW MEMBER’S welcome anytime, please contact Jean Boorman (Chairman) on 01233 770 558

 

SMARDEN GARDENERS’ SOCIETY

My garden starts to look so barren at this time of the year that I have resolved to tackle the issue of winter colour next year. I have Hellebores and Winter Jasmine and two winter blooming Clematis but I am sure there other evergreen and winter flowering perennials including the dogwoods grown for the colour of their stems that I could choose to create a real winter palette to cheer me on the gloomiest of days. I was desperate to give the lawn one final cut for the winter but the wet weather in November meant it was too wet even with the mower blades set high. I guess another New Years resolution would be to spend more time clearing and aerating the lawn so it drains better in the wet, but then again it is sown on clay. I am sure I was not the only one who found it difficult to cut down perennials and roses still in bloom a legacy of the long mild autumn but the sudden drop in temperature in early December spurred me on to cover, move and protect tender plants, particularly those in pots where the roots are particularly vulnerable.

 

The schedule committee sat in December and your 2015 schedules will be with you shortly, I hope you will find something that is of interest to you. Thank you to those of you who made suggestions for the shows, outings and guest speakers, we have included them where possible. The Annual Subscription remains at £5 per head and is due in March. It is particularly important to be a fully paid up member if you wish to enter the shows. You will find details on how to pay in the schedule.

 

On reading a back copy of ‘This England” I came upon this little saying which I think is particularly appropriate to those of us who strive to build the garden of our dreams.

THREE THINGS, WHICH —- NEVER COME BACK—Time, Words & Opportunity. ONE NEEDS —Hope, Peace &Honesty. ARE NEVER CERTAIN—Success, Dreams & Fortune.

 

With all good wishes for the New Year

Jean Boorman

 

ARE YOU SOMEONE WHO LOVES ALL THINGS GREEN?

INTRODUCING… THE GARDENING GROUP

AT CHARING SURGERY FOR REGISTERED PATIENTS

WANT TO GET FRESH AIR, EXERCISE, BE CREATIVE, MEET OTHER PEOPLE, HAVE FUN & DO SOMETHING PURPOSEFUL? ALL GREAT FOR YOUR HEALTH & WELLBEING

HERE IS YOUR OPPORTUNITY!

WE ARE LOOKING FOR VOLUNTEERS

TO BE PART OF THIS EXCITING NEW VENTURE; TO ORGANISE, DIG, PLANT, CREATE, GROW & NURTURE TWO PLOTS AT CHARING SURGERY.

AGE 16+ GREEN FINGERS NOT ESSENTIAL!!

COME TO A MEETING & START CREATING

TUES 9 SEPT 4-6.30PM AT THE SURGERYALL SUPPORT, SPONSORS & DONATIONS WELCOME!

GET INVOLVED & GROW!

TO REGISTER YOUR INTEREST

CALL YVONNE 01233 878474

OR ANNIE 07876 590070

THIS INITIATIVE IS BEING INTRODUCED BY THE CHARING PPG (PATIENT PARTICIPATION GROUP)

ARE YOU SOMEONE WHO LOVES ALL THINGS GREEN?

INTRODUCING… THE GARDENING GROUP

AT CHARING SURGERY FOR REGISTERED PATIENTS

WANT TO GET FRESH AIR, EXERCISE, BE CREATIVE, MEET OTHER PEOPLE, HAVE FUN & DO SOMETHING PURPOSEFUL? ALL GREAT FOR YOUR HEALTH & WELLBEING

HERE IS YOUR OPPORTUNITY!

WE ARE LOOKING FOR VOLUNTEERS

TO BE PART OF THIS EXCITING NEW VENTURE; TO ORGANISE, DIG, PLANT, CREATE, GROW & NURTURE TWO PLOTS AT CHARING SURGERY.

AGE 16+ GREEN FINGERS NOT ESSENTIAL!!

COME TO A MEETING & START CREATING

TUES 9 SEPT 4-6.30PM AT THE SURGERYALL SUPPORT, SPONSORS & DONATIONS WELCOME!

GET INVOLVED & GROW!

TO REGISTER YOUR INTEREST

CALL YVONNE 01233 878474

OR ANNIE 07876 590070

THIS INITIATIVE IS BEING INTRODUCED BY THE CHARING PPG (PATIENT PARTICIPATION GROUP)

 

 

Smarden Gardeners’ Society

 

If you were unable to attend the outings to Godinton and Nymans – You missed a real treat!

 

Our fears of missing out on the best of the National collection of Delphiniums at Godinton were unfounded as they were still full of life and the colours which ranged from Royal Blue to the lightest blue and deep Purple through all the shades of Mauve and lilac and pink were fantastic. But the most unusual one was a deep cream called Butter Ball. Unfortunately the Plant Stall was unmanned due to it being an evening visit so we were not able to purchase any plants. But I have asked Godinton to let me know when the Delphiniums will available.

The annual outing to Nymans in West Sussex was equally enjoyable and the weather held for the whole day with just enough sun to make the beautiful gardens sparkle. There was plenty to do with visits to the ruins of the original house and an exhibition on the life of the Messel family, who owned the house, and found themselves in the unusual and difficult position of being German’s living in England during the war. And of course being National Trust there was good food and a well-stocked shop to tempt us. Suffice to say the coach came home with some excess cargo.

The summer show the following week was equally successful despite the wet weather on the run up to the day which damaged some of the flowers particularly the roses but we still had a good number of entries in most classes. The winner with the most points overall was once again Andy Batt with his rivals Jim Windibanks and John Ledger running a close second and third. I think they will be clicking at his heels again come the Autumn Show. The Judges had great fun tasting the many excellent entries in classes 46 & 47 for Fruit Liqueurs (Alcoholic and Non Alcoholic) and were grateful for a little of Ethel Cornwall’s winning bread loaf!

Congratulations to all our winners and well done to everybody who took part.

 

We now have a break for August before the Autumn Show on Tuesday the 2nd of September- PLEASE NOTE THE CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES IS SATURDAY 30THAUGUST I look forward to seeing you all again then, in the meantime enjoy the fruits of your labours from your summer garden

 

Jean Boorman

 

Smarden Gardeners’ Society

Gosh! I have just realized it is the deadline for the Parish Magazine contributions tomorrow and I nearly missed it!

Where has the last month gone? The lovely warm weather meant I spent much of it in my garden as I guess many of you did to. The warm spring has led to copious growth and early flowering of many plants leading to some interesting combinations in the borders. Sadly it also means some flowers including the roses have already gone over and last month I stressed my concern that early flowering would affect the entries for the rose show and our trip to Godinton to see the Delphinium collection. I still have my fingers crossed for both events, as it is too early to report on these in this edition. In most cases regular deadheading will encourage more blooms.

 

Summer means the return of some of my favourite birds. The swallows swifts and martins and I will never tire of hearing the chirps and squeaks of the swallows or watching the agility and speed of the swifts and martins as they catch insects in the air. The warm spring also means many birds started breeding early and will have more than one brood so please take care when cutting hedges or tidying areas where they maybe nesting.

 

A REMINDER THAT IN JULY WE HAVE OUR ANNUAL OUTING- THIS IS ON THE 5TH AND IF YOU HAVE PUT YOUR NAME DOWN TO GO, PLEASE REMEMBER TO TAKE YOUR N.T MEMBERSHIP CARD (IF APPLICABLE) OTHERWISE YOU WILL HAVE TO PAY TO GO IN.

 

THE SUMMER SHOW is the following week on Saturday the 12th July; please make sure you get your entries to Stephanie Atkins by the closing date of Wednesday 9th July. See your schedules for further details.

 

On September the 13th the History Society is holding a “Smarden Heritage Day” and we have been invited to take part and promote our society along with a display of some of our archives and a record of past events. If anybody would like to be involved in helping on the day or has any material they think might be of interest please let me know. Thank you.

 

Finally if you are in London between the 5th of August and 11th November you may like to visit the Tower of London who are commemorating the First World War with a major art installation of 888,246 ceramic poppies, one for each British and Colonial fatality during the war. The poppies will encircle the iconic landmark, creating a powerful visual commemoration.

 

In the meantime enjoy your summer garden.

 

Jean Boorman

 

Notices

 

GARDEN SPACE AVAILABLE

Mr & Mrs McMachan of Braid Farm, Burnthouse Lane, Smarden TN27 8PT

Have a large plot of land, currently set up as a vegetable plot and fully enclosed in caging, which they are offering free of rent to any member who would like more gardening space. In return they would be grateful of an occasional handout of produce when available.

They are happy for people to share and there is plenty of room for children to run around. They run a holiday and wedding venue business and simply do not have the time to look after this part of the garden.

If you are interested and would like to see the plot please contact Mrs McMachan on 01233 771 982.

 

PLUCKLEY GARDEN SOCIETY

Are running a trip to RHS Wisley on June 15th and have spaces available on the coach.

Anybody interested in going should contact Julie Bennett on 01233 629 533.

Jean Boorman

 

SMARDEN GAREDNERS’ SOCIETY

 

SUMMER EVENTS

 

JUNE 18th Rose Show 6.15pm Smarden Charter Hall

(Closing Date 15th June)

 

JUNE 26th Evening visit to GODINTON to see the National Delphinium Collection- meet in Charter Hall Car Park at 5.15pm, take your own car.

(Closing Date 1st June)

 

JULY 5th Annual Outing to NYMANS- booking one month in advance.

(Closing Date 3rd June)

 

JULY 12th Summer Show 10am Smarden Charter Hall

(Closing Date 9th July)

 

For further details of all the above events please see your Members Schedule, parish Mag and Posters around the village.

 

——————————————————————————————————

 

Thank you to everybody who supported or helped at the May Plant Sale, which made £318.00.

 

Jean Boorman