October has seen a few beautiful frosty and sunny days that has shown off some lovely autumn colour in the garden. However, the general trend for mild, wet and cloudy days has continued and the poor garden is pretty waterlogged at the end of the month. We are having to re-route visitors around the garden at the moment to try and avoid some very slippery areas and very muddy grass areas.
The Forecourt in early morning autumn sun.
The lovely red foliage of a Prunus tree in the sun by the church gate.
The red foliage and berries of a Cotoneaster at the front gates.
The Acer griseum in The Best Garden is turning from green to yellow to red.
The wet weather and footfall in the garden continues to take its toll.
We are in leaf clearing season. Alex and Richard are seen leaf clearing in The Best Garden. We store the leaves for leaf mulch.
John and Mary have been doing great work taking out the inappropriate, modern vine eyes and putting in historic vine eyes around the garden. We are putting apple cordons on this wall on the top terrace this year.
Jane C has been working with Alice taking off strawberry runners and potting them on for use in the Kitchen Garden next year.
Hedge cutting continues and as part of that we can now start sumping back the other side of the West Garden yew hedge.
This is the growth on the side of the yew hedge that was stumped back in The West Garden about 11 months ago. It is regenerating nicely, having been fed.
Jane H picking the last of the root crops and weeding in the Kitchen Garden.
Graham chatting to visitors at the beginning of one of our 'taster' tours of the garden.
I have been busy aerating the turf around the garden. I attempted to use a motorised aerator, but the lawns were too wet and I have resorted to using a push along aerator. Here I am tackling the croquet lawns. This will hopefully improve drainage and problems with compaction.
We have been manuring some of the Kitchen Garden beds.
Clearing and weeding in the Kitchen Garden.
I have been busy planting hundreds of autumn bulbs for spring flowers. They will make a lovely display in the Kitchen garden and be used as cut flowers for the house. They include tulips, narcissi and hyacinths.
The next phase of the new Kitchen garden restoration continues. I strimmed down the green manure and then Joe did a fab job helping to rotavate the crop in to break down over the winter and will aid nitrogen fixing in the soil.
Karl has been busy edging the new Kitchen Garden beds.
John has been getting our fruit ready for the winter. He has done a wonderful job pruning and tying in the logan berry and putting hazel supports in for the new apricot tree.
Patty has been doing wonderful work with me and the house staff working to maintain and improve the house plant collection at Chastleton. She also happens to be my Mum - so we are keeping the horticultural theme in the family. Thanks for all your work in the house with the plants.
Other jobs this month are:
Clearing and tidying
Cleaning and sorting the greenhouse
Beekeeper session with local primary school
Planting autumn bulbs in the orchard