Christmas activites at Harlow Carr

As well as bringing Christmas quizzes and weather preparations, December is a good time for planting some new trees at RHS Garden Harlow Carr

The Winter Walk at RHS Garden Harlow Carr (pictured in 2012)Last Friday I had my guided winter walk at Harlow Carr. However, on the Thursday before there was horizontal sleet and below-zero winds, making me feel decidedly sorry for the people booked on it. However in the morning, at the eleventh hour, the wind dropped and out came the sun, and, while it was chilly, it all went really well. After two hours though everyone was very pleased to get inside and have a cup of coffee as we had a questions and answers session in the warm.

Meanwhile there was a flurry of activity over in the site yard which always happens as soon as the temperature drops: snow ploughs were re attached to tractors; grit bins were topped up; and the gritting machine that we attach to the motorised vehicle came back from being serviced all sparkly and clean (that won’t last!). Of course, the minute all these preparations have taken place, the temperature soars and now we have a sweltering 13 degrees - scarves, hats and extra coats are being discarded willy nilly!

Katy with her metasequoiasKaty - from the woodland team, left - is getting very excited about planting out some metasequoias (dawn redwoods). We have an area of the arboretum that is fairly wet, and it will be ideal to put out these beautiful specimens there. Two of them are a golden cultivar, Metasequoia glyptostroboides ‘Gold Rush’, so I can’t wait to see these planted up and thriving. She is going to be planting them out next week and I shall be helping her, so I’ll take some photos for my next blog.

Also, we had our last staff meeting of the year and the proverbial Christmas quiz was rolled out. I was all primed with the names of Santa’s reindeers which we didn’t get asked, but couldn’t remember all the names of the three wise men and how to spell them, which we did get asked - typical!

Anyway, as this is my last blog of the year, it only remains for me to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a peaceful, happy and healthy New Year.

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