Ann Macdonald – Manager Environmental Services Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council
Chris James – WHBC Officer Environmental Services
John Roper – Volunteer Leader Danesbury Local Nature Reserve
Andrew Beattie – Volunteer Danesbury Local Nature Reserve
Sue Stephens – Volunteer Friends of Mardley Heath LNR
On Thursday 9th November a valuable two hours were spent at Campus East discussing future Garden Strategies, and other issues.
We reaffirmed the view we shared at our last January 2017 strategy meeting that we should not attempt a Full Victorian Restoration because we have no records to guide us. Instead we should develop a Natural Garden in a Modern Setting but with local Historical Interest.
We looked at various Pulhamite examples from Claude Hitching’s Book “Rock Landscapes and the Pulham Legacy”, and at our own photographic records of visits we have ourselves made to Pulham sites. We will aim for full planting in selected areas of the Fernery, with rocks poking through a predominantly green cover provided by herbaceous borders but no shrubs, tightly planted and with a thematic colour (Mauve/White?)
Ann will draw up a Planting List by the end of 2017 ready for a (local) Garden Designer to direct the planting by volunteers in April 2018. Ann anticipates a purchase order of some 650 plants in April 2018, at the start of the WHBC Accounting year.
The Planting List will include evergreens for boundary planting too, and it was agreed that in view of our experience of the whips we planted earlier this year which were vandalised, we are likely to order established pot planted trees in future.
We need to research the following topics, in this order of priority, to find out what typical features of the period would have looked like:
- Water circulation for cascades
- Rustic bridges
- tufa rockgardens
- Ornamental ironwork for the entrance features
Restoration options requiring the use of contractors (machinery)
- Tracing water pipes
- Excavation of the central area
- Exposure of two circular (perimeter) paths
The above tasks are listed in order of priority, and will be limited by the time allocated.