Surrey Homes | SH56 | June 2019 | Kitchen & Bathroom supplement inside

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Garden

Wander around

the garden

Sue Whigham takes a stroll

around her own garden to pick

a few of her treasured plants

We walked through one of The Woodland

Trust’s small parcels of woodland early this

morning for the usual dog walk only to hear

the welcome sound of the cuckoo a few fields away

for the seventh time in as many days. It’s probably the

same male calling and what an evocative call he has.

Now that the bluebells are on the wane for this year,

they’ve been closely followed by Yellow Archangel, an

ancient woodland species in the lamium family (nettle).

The story is that they were called Archangel as they didn’t

sting! They’re worth investigating closely as whilst they have

a classic nettle leaf with toothed edges growing in pairs

up the stems, the butter-yellow flowers are so interesting,

resembling little ‘bubbles’ before they open out. And there

are markings or ‘honey guides’ on the flower for the benefit

of pollinating insects. Isn’t nature marvellous – designing

maps to guide the insect in – and, of course, once the

nectar is collected the pollen drops on to the plant’s stigma

and pollination takes place and so the cycle continues.

Making observations like this slow a woodland walk down

but isn’t it worth it. On the same walk I met someone

taking a picture of the most amazing fungus on a dead

chestnut stump. Seeing it quite made his day and mine.

After spending a winter spreading home-grown compost

on the beds and dramatically reducing the thicket of Rosa

‘Rambling Rector’ (don’t make the same mistake as we did

and plant up a tree. It is a very vigorous rambler) from a

long suffering apple tree and then clearing out rampant vinca

under the tree, the area finally looked decent enough to start

replanting. Hopefully, the canopy of the remaining rose won’t

be too dense now so plants happy in semi-shade will do well.

Then there was a bit of a spending spree at the


Fungus on a chestnut stump

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