The garden in winter

Frosty view of Cedar Lawn

Don’t dismiss the garden in winter – the formal topiary, wobbly hedges and intricate balustrades cast fantastic shadows in the low winter sunshine.

The garden is a hub of activity over the colder months as the team will be busy putting the gardens to bed and undertaking some bigger conservation project work.

The winter jobs list
Routine jobs include finishing the hedge cutting, pruning back the herbaceous plants and mulching the rose borders.  Turf maintenance is carried out at this time of year as well, with the lawns needing scarifying – a process that removes moss and thatch.

In the short term, it does mean that the lawns will be looking somewhat bedraggled and browner than usual.  They will recover though and the long term benefit is that when the grass does come back in the spring, it will be looking better than ever.

Bigger projects
One of the bigger restoration projects is tackling the twelve pairs of Irish yews that flank the east path of Cedar Lawn.   It has been a while since their last haircut and they are now slightly out of proportion with the rest of the garden.  Over the winter the gardening team will be reducing their girth and height quite significantly.

Initially it will take about two weeks to cut all 24 yews and as they grow back, they will be cut to mimic the shapes of the obelisks on the house.