It is very sad that the celebration of new life at Easter and in springtime that should be the main feature of this month is being dominated by the isolation, illness and fear associated with coronavirus. Many of you may well feel that with all the problems and worries at this time gardening will take a pretty low priority. On the other hand, if like my wife and I you are amongst the isolated, this may be an opportunity to give the garden more attention than usual and it will help to keep you positive as you reap the benefit of being out in the open air …

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Biddenham Gardeners’ Association – Important Message

As new reports of Coronovirus (Covid-19) continue to develop along with Government advice to withdraw from social activities, the BGA Committee took the decision to cancel the Gardeners’ Question Time talk which was due to take place on Tuesday, 17th March. The health, safety and wellbeing of our members and visitors is always our first priority.  This is an unprecedented and dynamic time which is continuing to evolve.  At the time of writing (17th March), we are pleased to say that there are no known reported cases of the virus amongst our membership.  We hope this remains the case and we are closely monitoring the changing Government guidelines.  

Unfortunately, the 30th birthday celebrations and talk from Nick Bailey in April has also been cancelled. With regards to our future talks in May and beyond, it is currently impossible for us to know if they will be able to go ahead.  We believe it is critical that we do our bit to help reduce the transmission of Covid-19.

We hope that our members and associates keep well and take comfort in the fact that we are all connected through our love of gardening.  Please do refer to our website for further updates and for a source of support and inspiration with regards to our love of gardens.  All comments and queries are welcome on the website.  Further queries can be made to Paula on 01234 602039. For any queries regarding membership, please contact Linda on 01234 270747. 

Paula Church (BGA Secretary)

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This Month in the Garden – March 2020

When you read this, the snowdrops, the first display of Spring, will very largely be dying down. If you want to have an even bigger and better display next year, or you have been inspired by the idea of having your own snowdrops, now is the best time for doing something about it …

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The speaker at our meeting on 18th February was one of our own members, Joanna Baxter. Joanna is a knowledgeable gardener who specialises in acers and she has spoken to the BGA on a couple of occasions. The subject of her talk was “Mythology of Plants” and it was very clearly presented with a wide range of illustrations …
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This Month In The Garden – February 2020

Jeremy in the garden

How are your New Year resolutions going?  If paying more attention to the garden featured amongst them this is the time to start putting your resolve to the test. Busy times lie ahead and it is a good idea to get going as soon as possible.

The best place to start is with pruning. You can prune apples and pears much earlier than this but you do need to get it done by the end of February …

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My Garden – 2020

We started our new Biddenham Gardeners’ Association year with an excellent turn out of members and visitors.  The “My Garden” talks, which we feature every January, are always very popular and this year was no exception.  Two very different gardens were described:

First up was Jan Page who lives in The Old Barns. Jan’s garden came into being in 1987.  It is a small plot 40 ft x 30 ft and originally consisted of just grass and gravel.  However, Jan had other plans and over the years has created a very special oasis for many exotic and unusual plants.  Walls were built and we enjoyed seeing the photograph of the concrete being piped in over the roof top of the house during the wall’s construction.  A most attractive brick shed was built, a pond was formed from an up-ended sewer pipe, an acid bed was made and a raised bed was constructed from stone dug out from the wall foundations.  Fresh top soil was brought in to ensure that the many exotic plants were given a good start.  Much of Jan’s garden is quite shady but she capitalises on this with a variety of ferns, hostas, azaleas, bamboos and other shade loving plants.  In 2014 Jan dug everything out of her garden, she potted plants up and asked friends to look after them for her whilst her garden became a construction site as a new conservatory was built.  The garden was replanted with the green and textured  plants that Jan favours.  Fatsia Japonica, Calthifolia, Asarum, and Zantedeschia to name but a few.  Plants are crammed into every space giving an almost tropical feel.  A sambucus has not only a rose but also a clematis growing through it.  Jan is a true plants person and we were delighted that she was able to share her passion with us this evening. A small selection of photos from Jan’s presentation:


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This Month In The Garden – September 2019          

August was the month of the big wind. Most people probably avoided major damage but there was enough to stir things up in the garden. Some of my dahlias were spoiled and I just got to the vegetables in time to stop the line of runner beans being blown down. It was a salutary reminder of the importance of providing support for plants and checking that the support hasn’t been outgrown.  Many of us start sticking in stakes and tying things in when plants start flopping about but that is really too late.

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This Month In The Garden – December 2019/January 2020

Jeremy in the garden

Over the next couple of months there are likely to be quite a few days when the weather won’t be conducive to working out- of- doors. There are, however, plenty of jobs to keep you busy if you can get outside. That means it is a good idea to keep both in mind and have a list of the things that you can do under cover or indoors as well as planning what you will do in the garden. There is also Christmas  and the New year to celebrate  so gardening may not be a  high priority, especially in December …

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From Fields to Floribunda

At our November meeting we welcomed Alison Green.  Alison, who is a garden designer, took us on a journey of how she created her beautiful garden in North Enfield.  Her talk was interspersed by some very useful gardening and landscaping tips. I particularly liked her idea of planting pots within pots for a quick and easy turnaround each season …

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This Month in The Garden – November 2019

As this year draws near to its end we are seeing a repeat of last year’s weather; a long period of drought followed by a wet October. There is a difference though, as the period of drought was neither as prolonged or as hot as last year and particularly noticeable is the fact that lawns have recovered really quickly. After last year’s damage when the traditional advice of not watering the lawn in a dry period as it will quickly recover after rain proved wrong, not watering has been the right thing to do this time … Continue reading

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A Labour of Love (Alpines and Bulbs) by Rob Potterton

The speaker at our meeting on 15th October was Rob Potterton of Pottertons Nursery near Caistor in Lincolnshire. Rob’s subject was “A Labour of Love. Alpine, plants and bulbs.” His highly informative and entertaining talk was illustrated with excellent photographs and a great many pictures of alpine plants showing the huge range of plants and their vibrant  colours. The easiest way to be reminded of the plants that Rob talked about is to visit the nursery website (@
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