Hospice Gardening during Lockdown April to June 2020

July 2020

Words and pictures by Stephanie Bulman:

During Lockdown, the Hospice Gardening Volunteers have continued to cultivate and maintain the main hospice garden for the residents and their families. The internal courtyards have been separately cared for to avoid the need for volunteers to enter the Hospice, whilst outside social distancing has been adhered to.

The Woodland garden by the entrance to the Hospice was extremely colourful this spring, due to the heavy rainfall between October and March. The two Cornus controversa variegata, growing near the pond, were particularly spectacular and enjoyed from windows of the Hospice or those sitting on the various benches. They are underplanted with carpets of snowdrops and aconites.

The ‘Cutting Garden’ specially designed and planted for residents of the Hospice and their relatives is believed to be the first such garden in the country and is having a wonderful second year. The sweet-scented and prolific ‘Matucana’ sweet peas are now flowering alongside the Penstemon ‘Garnet’.

Many of the annuals from last summer, such as the cornflowers, have self-seeded. The latter is a favourite for the ladybirds and bees. Many of the plants have enjoyed the hot May. The Achilleas, in particular, have flowered well. This has allowed many flowers to be picked flowers and posies made up to be given to those in the hospice and the local community by staff and volunteers. The scented shrub roses are also flowering well, with many surrounded by the self-seeding Nigella ‘Love in the Mist’.

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