Gardeners’ Newsletter January 2023

West Bergholt Gardeners’ Newsletter – January 21st 2023 

Helebores & Aconites feature  in the Gardeners' Newsletter January 2023

Hello and a Happy New Year from your Committee

Talking of whom, we have had a meeting to discuss Speaker and subject ideas for our next season from this September through to May 2024.  I know it sounds a long way off as we’ve only just jumped into 2023 but Speakers are rapidly becoming booked up! We hope we shall do our best for you all and make choices that will enthuse and interest you in anything horticultural! 

2022 Reflection

Returning briefly to 2022, Chris Wiley’s talk in November was very interesting on his background and his favourite – Snowdrops!  He also showed us the pretty Sweet Peas he’d proudly produced, carefully carried on the train to Chelsea Flower Show and then unexpectedly had a posy of them presented to our late Queen on her very last visit to one of her favourite places.  Having checked with Chris, the seeds of these Sweet Peas will be on sale via Mr Fothergill at the end of this year! 

Our trip a couple of days later to RHS Hyde Hall for the Light Show was a new adventure!  The gardens were alight with beautiful colours and everyone who went really enjoyed it, despite the slightly inclement start to the evening!! 

December Quiz

Our December Xmas Quiz was great fun, as always, and we send big thanks to Roxy and Nigel Boyce-Bown for making it so, with their great variety of questions!    

Upcoming Talks & Trips

Into 2023 and as little reminders……..coming up in February we have Mike Lavelle talking on “February Dos and Don’ts” on 20th, followed by Simon White showing us “Gardens of East Anglia” on 20th March which hopefully will enthuse you all to visit some this year!  Sue Sharman returns on 17th April to help us with “Container Growing” ideas and then we finish our current season in May with Jamie Blake from Bressingham Gardens speaking on “Around the World in 80 plants”. 


So far, we have 2 trips definitely fixed and the first one is earlier than usual to see the Tulips at Ulting Wick on Monday 24th April at 2.30pm.  I currently have 25 interested names but I’d quite like some more of you to come!  So, please get in touch with me!  Its a self-drive trip and the cost is £12 which includes a cup of tea/coffee & cake.  I will bring the paperwork with me on 20th February and I would like your £12 commitment on that date in order to gauge numbers.  If you’d like a lift, then please let me know as there are always offers.  

On Monday 12 June we have a day out to RHS Wisley Gardens in Surrey.  We were set to go in 2020 but you all know why we couldn’t, so its rescheduled for this year.  The cost to Members will be for the coach + driver’s tip and again, I will have all the paperwork ready for you on 20th February.  WBGA members will obviously have priority for seats BUT if you wish to bring a friend then you are obviously welcome.  There will be a slight difference in the price to all non-Members as usual. 

Snowdrop Season

As we rapidly approach the Snowdrop season, I thought you might like an idea of places reasonably close to go to where you can see these pretty little Winter flowers.  Please check their or the NGS websites because some offer more than just snowdrops in planting and refreshments (especially on a cold day!!) 

  • Daws Hall Nature Reserve, Lamarsh 
    January 29     Sundays February 5, 12 & 19 
  • Markshall Estate 
    February – 3, 4 & 5 for first sightings 
  • Easton Lodge Gardens, nr Dunmow 
    February – Wednesdays – 15 & 22    Sundays – 12 & 19 
  • Hedingham Castle 
    February – Saturdays – 4 & 18     Sundays – 5 & 19   Monday 13 – Wednesday 
  • Kentwell Hall, Long Melford 
    February starts on 11 – 19 then weekends until end of March 
    Under the NGS scheme 
  • Green Island Gardens, Ardleigh 
    January 22…….10 till 4 
  • Dragons, Boyton Cross, Chelmsford 
    February 8……..11.30 till 3.00 
  • Horkesley Hall, Little Horkesley
    February 25………12.30 till 4.30 

Meanwhile, I eagerly await the appearance of Snowdrops in our garden as the leaves now peep through.  The Hellebores and Aconites are flowering!  See Peter’s montage above!  It is getting lighter earlier in the evenings.  I just love this time of the year! 

Till we meet again on 20th February……..Take care everyone! 

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