Digging for Victory
Marking the centenary of the First World War, the Walled Garden is hosting an exhibition in 2016 that explored gardening and food production between 1914 and 1918. Visitors are able to discover the varieties of vegetables that were grown, how gardening contributed to the war effort and the vital role women played during this time, until the end of November 2016.
To help tell their stories, the Walled Gardeners grew traditional varieties of produce from heritage seeds, that would have been grown during the First World War, so that as the garden grew throughout the year, so did the exhibition. Alongside the produce, information was displayed about how these plants and vegetables were used by the soldiers at war as well as at home.
The garden explored how attitudes changed to what was being grown as the war progressed; displaying extracts from the letters written throughout the war by Alice De Rothschild, who resided at Waddesdon Manor.
The exhibition also highlighted the role of women during this time and the vital work woman did within the horticultural industry. Today, all the gardeners within the Walled Garden are female, a poignant reminder of how far the industry has moved forward.
Earlier this year, the Walled Garden recruited 5 hen 'soldiers' to help them tell their stories. Hens played an important role within the war, not only as a source of food, but their eggs ensured that the soldiers on the front received much needed protein.
The Walled Garden is open from 9am to 5pm daily, where you can meet Sally, Daisy, Darcy, Olive and Lady Peckington II.