Dear BGA member,
Despite these sad and difficult times, many people have found great pleasure in spending time in their gardens. We have enjoyed some wonderful spring colours. The magnolia blossom was beautiful. We have seen displays of daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, grape hyacinths, camellias, hellebores, primulas, pansies, forget-me-nots – and in our garden we have calendula and osteospermum in flower. Also the forsythia has been impressive …
We have been very fortunate to have had some excellent speakers at our BGA meetings since September. These have included Darren Lerigo ‘What do I do with this space?’, Rob Potterton, ‘A labour of Love-Alpines and Bulbs’, Alison Green ‘From fields to Floribunda’ and Joanna Baxter, ‘The Mythology of Plants’. We also had two very interesting talks in January for ‘My garden’ by Jan Page and Jeremy and Helen Reynolds. In December, we had our Christmas party and we were grateful to Peter Carter for devising quizzes and making it a very enjoyable evening. We have had very positive feedback about the speakers from members and we have been extremely encouraged by the number of members and visitors attending the meetings. Many have commented on the friendly and welcoming atmosphere at the meetings.
It is sad that we have had to cancel our meetings until possibly September. We will be guided by government regulations and we hope that meetings may continue before then. In view of that, we may not be able to hold our AGM in July and I am sending out this chairman’s newsletter instead. I feel that the committee has done a wonderful job. I would like to propose that at the beginning of the meeting in September, you express your appreciation for them and confidence in the work that they have done, by confirming that you would like them to continue in their roles for a further year.
We are very sad that the outings planned for this year may not take place. The outing to Theobalds has certainly been cancelled. Alison Green would be very happy for us to go at a later date. We are unsure as to whether we will be able to go to Elton Hall. You will be notified on the website when a final decision has been made.
As we are aware that we will not be able to hold all our meetings in the next two or three months, it is proposed that subscriptions for current members will be decreased for the year 2021 to reflect cancelled meetings in 2020.
Several members have been concerned that garden centres have been closed and that plants will be disposed of at the end of the season. I have been given the following information by members of the committee which I hope will be helpful. Cottage Farm Nursery at Cardington are delivering for a small fee of £5. They are taking orders over the phone which is 01234 838383. They have a Facebook page. Annie Godfrey at Daisy Roots who gave us a talk is also delivering but only locally. She is happy to post out orders. She has a website and a Facebook page. Waterside Nursery who also gave us a talk are sending out orders. They too have a good website and Facebook page. Kempston Nurseries are very busy as they have fewer staff now but if you want to order, try phoning 07955 742235. They will want credit card payment. When they are out delivering, the phone is switched off, so they will not be able to take orders at that moment of time. You may need to check if they are delivering plants but Milton Ernest garden centre are also doing deliveries on a Monday. You need to phone between 10am and 1pm on a Tuesday, Thursday or Friday to place an order 01234 823033. Payment will be taken over the phone and goods will be left on the driveway or in the front garden.
It has been suggested that on our website, we have a photo gallery of pictures of trees and plants in members’ gardens – or they could include plants in conservatories or even bunches of flowers made up by members. If you would like to send some pictures for inclusion on the photo gallery, could you please let Ron Bessey know. The email address to send them to is: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to have some guidelines as to how you should prepare your garden at this time of year, may I suggest that you look at the articles written by our former chairman Jeremy Arthern who is a fount of knowledge. You will find his articles on the BGA website. You could also look at Gardeners’ World on Friday evenings on BBC2.
May I end by thanking you for your support for the Biddenham Gardeners’ Association. Keep safe and well – and we look forward to meeting up again hopefully in the not too distant future.