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Gardening

Gardening

Selective Tidying in The Lewis Cottage Garden

If your garden is looking messy at this time of year, don’t worry. The garden at Lewis Cottage is also a bit of a mess and Richard Orton confesses he likes it that way. In his latest update Richard describes his own regime for tidying and pruning in winter and urges us to make up our own rules.
Gardening

Reflections on the Gardening Year at Lewis Cottage

At this time of year, as the days shorten and time spent out in the garden becomes increasingly precious, Richard Orton likes to pause and reflect on the gardening year at Lewis Cottage. His beautiful garden is regularly open to the public during the summer months, but in this exceptional year he has decided to open it during the winter as well, to enable those who are feeling isolated to enjoy the benefits of being outdoors with like minded people.
Gardening

Winter Gardening - a Time to Dream and Plan

The weather can be pretty unpleasant, the days are short, it seems to get dark far too early. Maybe it is hard to get inspired about your garden in winter, but for keen gardener Nancy Murgatroyd this is the time to dream and plan. Here she shares some ideas about how to plan a garden project.
Community

Sandford Churchyard Wins Award For Welcoming Wildlife and People

St Swithun’s Church in Sandford has won an award for encouraging wildlife and people to enjoy its churchyard. It all started three years ago when the Church was given an extra piece of land and a team of volunteers got together to make the churchyard more environmentally friendly. They are delighted to be runners up in the Best Devon Churchyard Competition but, as team member Jean Hope explains, the rewards go way beyond winning a prize.
Gardening

Gardening Tips for November  -  Try the No Dig Method

If you are fed up with weeding your veg plot, why not have a go at the ‘no dig’ method? It’s not only easier and quicker, but can actually make your soil healthier and more productive, as our gardening expert Andy Colquhoun explains.
Gardening

A Bumper Harvest of Autumnal Fruitfulness at Lewis Cottage

While many of us are wondering what to do with the apples in our gardens, at Lewis Cottage they are dealing with a bumper crop of some more unusual fruits - mulberries, figs, quinces and medlars. In the second of his blogs one of the creators of this special Mid Devon garden, Richard Orton, shares some ideas on how to use these fruits, a recipe for mulberry jelly and some tips on growing figs. He also shares his list of garden jobs for the autumn.
Gardening

Gardening Tips for October –  a Time for Composting and Clearing Up. 

We’re well and truly into autumn now and winter is just around the corner. Most of the fun jobs are over, but local expert Andy Colquhoun suggests there are still some new things you can do to spice up your gardening. 
Gardening

Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days of Summer at Lewis Cottage 

Lewis Cottage is a hidden gem of a garden buried in glorious countryside, between the Mid Devon villages of Colerooke and Spreyton. Twenty years ago Richard Orton and his friends Michael and Penny Pell took over an overgrown one acre woodland garden and, inspired by the styles of Beth Chatto and Gertrude Jekyll, they have expanded it into beautiful informal gardens combining relaxed planting schemes and formal borders with woodland areas dedicated to attracting wildlife. The gardens are open every year to visitors under the National Garden Scheme. In the first of his blogs, Richard reports on the unexpected success of their tropical border.