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Glorious gardens set in historic landscapes.
Find out how the development of our fifth garden progressed during the autumn months
Do you live or work in Greater Manchester and want to fill your city with plants and trees? We’re part of the ‘Ignition Project’ bringing 12 partners together from across Greater Manchester to address changes caused by climate change.
The beech ‘beehives’ planted in the Entrance Garden are turning copper and gold. The distinct pale cream paths follow a ‘Voronoi’ grid, a mathematical pattern which appears to look like a giraffe’s markings. © Nick Harrison
Our small herd of rare breed Berkshire pigs have done a fantastic job of digging over the birch glade near the Historic Lake, making light work of clearing the ground there. These hardworking members of the team here at Bridgewater love acorns as a treat. © Nick Harrison
The team from Maysand have worked hard to restore the walls of the historic lake. It’s been a massive job for them but you can see the fantastic work they’ve done on the new brickwork to the far right-hand side of the lake. © Nick Harrison
Our lovely team, volunteers and referrals, who are part of our wellbeing programme, were heard on BBC Radio 4’s ‘You and Yours’ talking about Bridgewater and this special ‘once in a lifetime’ project.
The final piece of the green roof on the Welcome Building was laid down by Sue Biggs (Director General of the RHS), Richard Green (Head of RHS Garden Bridgewater) and Marcus Chilton-Jones (Curator). A ceremony was held to mark this occasion. We're grateful to the sponsors and donors who made this building possible.
Many different types of fungi have been found this year due to the weather conditions. We spotted this stunning example of the Orange Peel Fungus or Aleuria aurantia at Bridgewater, with its contorted bowl like ascocarps.
A big thank you to four students (Emily, Ewa, Jason and Liam) from RHS Garden Wisley who came to give us a much appreciated hand with the planting. They even made us model animals from the large lumps of clay they found in the soil!
In homage to Halloween, our very own monster – an old apple tree in the orchard here at Bridgewater that's been re-named the ‘Frankentree’. Several varieties of apple have been grafted onto one of the original stumps, in time these will grow and create a tree that can support all the varieties at once!
The plants for the Paradise Garden, including this phenomenal pleached Persian ironwood tree (Parrotia persica), arrived in early October. The Bridgewater team and volunteers worked really hard to get them into the ground whilst conditions were good.
These rocks are part of an amazing stone structure at The Ge Yuan garden in Yangzhou. This particular stone is quarried from The Yellow Mountains of China. Held in front is a piece of stone taken from a local UK quarry that bears an almost identical resemblance to its Chinese counterpart. Rock of this design will be used to add an authentic feel to the Chinese Streamside Garden at RHS Bridgewater.
RHS Curator, Marcus Chilton-Jones and Tracy Snell, Garden Manager for Woodland and Ecology, travelled to China to gather design ideas for the Chinese Streamside Garden. They visited a variety of locations which are traditionally an important source of inspiration for classical Chinese garden designers.
RHS Garden Bridgewater was featured on ‘The One Show’ with presenter, Chris Bavin. He talked to the team about all the phenomenal planting they’ve done and the impact of gardening on people’s health and wellbeing.
The first plants have gone into the Outer Weston Walled Garden with 60m of UK-grown beech hedging planted by staff and volunteers. This is just the first part of the total 600m planned!
Our volunteers play a vital and pivotal role in the development of Bridgewater. We were pleased to welcome more than 100 volunteers for a special tour of the site, alongside lots of tea and cake! Thank you to every one of our volunteers for the incredible contribution they make.
More and more deliveries of plants, seeds and bulbs have arrived on site. These Snowdrop (Galanthus) seeds and bulbs, donated to us from the UK National Collection holder in Cumbria, will be planted out in our woodland. These pretty flowers will be among the first to raise their heads in the New Year.
The Federation of Chinese Associations of Manchester presented Bridgewater with a donation for the Chinese Streamside Garden at a gala dinner to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China. This garden will represent an exciting and unique fusion of Chinese and British horticulture.
The plants are arriving! We’ve received 31 beehive-shaped topiary beech, ready for the Entrance Garden and 3000 plants – a mix of shrubs, herbaceous perennials and grasses for the Paradise Garden. Locally grown yew hedging and six yew pyramids have also arrived for the Orchard Garden.
We’ve completed the soil fill in the Wellbeing Garden, over 600 cubic metres of soil has been put in, ready for planting. Much of the growing and planting in the Wellbeing Garden will be done by community groups with help from our Therapeutic Gardener and Wellbeing Volunteers.
We’ve been tightening the wires on the kitchen garden walls! As well as the usual horizontal, we’ve added vertical and oblique wires to help train our fruit trees into all sorts of wonderful shapes. The nails were made by a specialist local steel fabricator.
Exciting times at RHS Garden Bridgewater as the team plant the very first tree in the Paradise Garden, within the Weston Walled Garden. Phillyrea latifolia, is commonly known as the green olive tree or mock privet.
The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.