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I hope you are all well, and that your own lovely gardens are benefitting from all the showers !

The Garden is looking lovely, it makes such a difference now that the rosemary is so much more established, and we are replacing and patching where there were gaps. Su Macpherson kindly added her lovely willow crescents all around, and they look perfect there.

The bench looks great re painted, and with the graffiti gone; and the bath has had a coat of paint, gold feet, and Sarah will be re doing the Bath WI sign in time for the garden party. So we’ll be all spick and span !

Jean grew dozens of rainbow chard, and they are doing really well, have more than doubled in size, and there were plenty to complete the horseshoe shape at the bench side of the garden, where the marigolds were last year. They have been joined by Sally’s peas, which have been planted at the bases of several wigwams, and which we hope will romp away with the wet weather.

Elaine’s dahlias arrive next, after the threat of frost is over. So all on track, for the Garden Party !

The runner beans have been decimated by an anonymous decimator ! About a dozen have been eaten through at the base, and now there are only two left ! Even the botanical gardeners are puzzled, having never seen anything like it. I’m going to try chicken wire as protection, and also sow directly into the ground now. All fingers firmly crossed !

We’ve replaced the crescent of sweet peas with climbing French beans and peas, as those pretty flowers have poisonous seed pods ! My in depth research (not ! ) missed this little fact, but Su was on the case, thank you for that Su. It was suggested a Passiflora would be nice too, and this is now in place ! We have been lucky enough to have been awarded £200 from NFWI at Denman, Diane Sanderson, who is Home Economics Advisor there liked our scheme as did the team who awarded us the money, so that’s wonderful news. We need to submit our receipts, photographic evidence and a completed Risk Assessment Form before September; this gives us the opportunity to maybe buy some more permanent planting.

There is definitely a high risk of me throttling whichever creature is chomping through the runners !

The Garden will look wonderful for the WI Garden Party, it’ll be a really happy occasion, and it’ll be great to show our depiction of 100 years of the WI in Britain. Lucy Collins of WI Life Magazine is sending a reporter and a photographer to record our event, and it’ll be in one of the editions of the magazine !

What a generous spirited and talented group of Gurus we have ! The WI Garden is lucky indeed, and the results speak for themselves. Our Gurus deserve all the praise they get from the hundreds of visitors to the Garden, the pleasure, the peace, and sheer enjoyment of which is entirely due to their dedication and commitment to this beautiful haven. The work that gardeners put in is often unseen, but you know, it is seen, by the countless people who take photographs, relax on the bench, and enjoy naming the plants and herbs growing there.

We welcome newcomers to the Garden Team, who we hope will enjoy the Clear, Dig, and Plantathons, and join in generally. This is just a brief ( really ! ) catch up, and I apologise for lots that I’ve missed out.

With love from Kitty x

wi garden 15 april 201504