August 2018 Speaker
At our August meeting we were pleased to welcome Tom Cole, radio colleague of Ken Crowther on the Saturday morning gardening programme on BBC Essex, who trained at Writtle College, runs his own garden business, and also came back to Writtle College as lecturer in Garden Design. He entitled his talk. ‘What to do in the garden in August’ Initially he mentioned the unusual hot weather we have experienced recently and encouraged us to water early in the morning and late in the evening with rain water if possible. He also mentioned the need to tidy up the plants and shrubs by dead heading to promote flowers and remove disease, but not to prune perennials until next spring, so allowing seed heads to form for the birds to enjoy during the winter. A couple of tips he mentioned were to divide irises after flowering and to lift and divide primulas after flowering. He also mentioned rambling and climbing roses and other climbers such as wisteria and clematis as cover for fenced areas. He then moved onto vegetable gardens and gave us some good tips about using modular seed trays as well as for sowing carrot seeds, cabbage, beetroot, spinach, chard, and onion sets this autumn. He also gave a few tips about caring for fruit trees and bushes. Finally he spoke about care of ponds in gardens and the cleansing methods which are available.