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Aug 09

Britain’s Best Gardens

By admin | Uncategorized

Enjoy Britains Best Gardens

WESTONBIRT ARBORETUM

The National Arboretum, Westonbirt, in Gloucestershire is only three miles away from Tetbury, in the Costwolds. The internationally important shrub and tree collection in this historic and picturesque landscape is supported by Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum and managed by the Forestry Commission. There are more than 2,500 types of trees from all over the world, including China, North America, Chile, Japan, Britain, as well as from numerous countries with temperate climates.

The Westonbirt Estate was owned by Robert Holford, a rich Victorian landowner, who started planting trees during the 1850s. The Arboretum consists of 3 main areas.

The Old Arboretum, is a beautifully designed landscape dating back to the 1850s and offers beautiful vistas from stately avenues of trees.

Silk Wood is a semi-natural, ancient woodland with exotic plants.

The Grade 1 Downs contains grassland rich in grass species which makes it a great location for picnicking.

Westonbirt attracts more than 350,000 visitors per year who come from all over the world to view the spectacular autumn colours of the trees, or the spring displays of azalea, magnolia and rhododendron. Groups and individuals, young and old take part in guided walks, educational visits, workshops, guided walks or self-led trails.

Some of the popular events held at Westonbirt include the illuminated Enchanted Christmas trail, the Treefest and the Forest Live concert programme.

STOURHEAD

This landscape garden was first opened in the 1740s and is known world-wide. It has been described as ‘a living work of art’ by journalists and gardeners for its magnificent lake that reflects exotic and rare trees and for its mystical grottoes and classical temples. Stourhead House has a fascinating history that can be discovered with and adventurous Italian Grand Tour.

This Palladian mansion, set amid perfect lawns and expansive parkland contains a unique Regency library with antique Chippendale furniture and famous paintings. The 1,072 hectare estate can be explored to discover its ancient woods, chalk downs and farmland that is managed for wildlife. Stourhead is beautiful, come rain or shine, so pull on your wellies, bring your umbrella, and walk in the beautiful gardens or take a tour to learn more about the Hoare family history.

GREAT DIXTER

Great Dixter estate belonged to the writer and gardener, Christopher Lloyd, who found the inspiration and enthusiasm that fueled his books and articles for over 40 years in the gardens of the estate. The estate contains a garden, the historic house, an education center and a pilgrimage for horticulturists who come from all over the world to experience its magic.

Great Dixter is in fact made up of three different houses. The first was built on the estate in the mid 15th Century, the second, a yeoman’s house from Benenden, was built in the 16th Century and moved in 1910, and the third house is a combination of the former two with additional accommodation added in 1912. The medieval art of the house, the Great Hall, Solar and Palour, can be visited with the help of a guide.

RHS GARDEN WISLEY

The RHS is committed to bring gardening to everyone, including groundbreaking research, world class flower shows, school campaigns and community outreach programmes. At Wisley Gardens, the RHS shares the best in gardening with everyone, as this is what is at the heart of everything that the RHS does.

Enjoy the exciting new Food Hall, where Wisley grown produce and treats are served. Fill a basket with Wisley fare and enjoy a picnic on the lush green lawns of the beautiful gardens.

HELMSLEY WALLED GARDEN

This beautiful garden in the heart of New Yorkshire is the result of a huge amount of hard work by a number of volunteers, supporters, friends and staff, over a very long period of time. Many of the individuals involved in this garden project have moved on, but the ethos remains, always seeking to retain the serenity of this reflective space and utilize the restorative qualities of gardening to maintain that goal. A visit to Helmsley Walled Garden will restore your spirit and relax your mind.

The gardens at Helmsley is a historic site with greenhouses filled with vines and produce. The Social and Therapeutic Horticulture model is a holistic care model that aims to provide the restorative qualities of gardening to individuals with temporary or permanent disabilities.

Helmsley Walled Garden promotes peoples enjoyment of gardening and the staff will happily share their experience with you.

Jan 05

How To Lay Turf

By admin | Turf

While we’ll offer to do the heavy lifting for you, many customers decide to brave the challenge themselves. Laying fresh turf isn’t an art form, but the process does demand due care. Perhaps this is virginal ground and you’re immune to the charms of Alan Titchmarsh. You may be a DIY impresario armed with a portfolio of successful home-improvement projects. Either way; Let’s roll.

“Great Things Are Not Done By Impulse, But By A Series Of Small Things Brought Together”

Vincent Van Gogh

No, you wont need nimble fingers or intricate craftsmanship. However, laying natures carpet does require hard work and a grasp of lawn-care fundamentals. Just as in construction we lay the foundations before working brick after brick to finalize our masterpiece, an effervescent lawn is established at its roots. Let’s do the groundwork first.

Topsoil

For turf to become established, your garden requires soil. Just as the body demands adequate nourishment, so too does the earth. Topsoil, nurtured by adequate hydration, becomes a conductor of the essential nutrients vital for turf’s longevity. Topsoil needs to be dispersed and leveled evenly with a minimal depth of 2-6 inches before the heavy lifting ensues.

Laying

Turf is an incredibly vigorous and resilient fabric. The varied brands of turf can be sustained through record rainfall and drought conditions, as witnessed in 2012. For turf to thrive however, it must be laid with care and attention. On delivery your turf should be laid immediately, ensuring the turves are parallel and snuggly packed. Position planks as you work along. This enables roots and rhizomes to contract and unite.

Aftercare

So, you’ve prepared and leveled the foundations and unfurled nature’s carpet — But nature requires a helping hand. Watering your lawn is essential.  Expect to do it immediately and every morning for the week thereafter. After 5 days you can mow your lawn and reserve the hose to dry spells.

We hope you’ve found this write-up beneficial. Wiltshire Turf Deliveries can trace our industry roots through the generations. We’re a family run business with outlets across the UK. Our family deliver turf in Edinburgh, Bristol and Nottinghamshire. We have an established record of delivering quality turf at competitive prices. Contact us for more information.

Jan 03

Winter Lawn Care

By admin | Turf

Winter is your lawns ‘Off-Season’. It’s that time of year when lawns across the county experience less footfall as homeowners retire from the great British outdoors and retreat into the warmth of their homes. Winter lawn care demands a tailored approach. This post is dedicated to those customers who inquire about managing their garden and reap the benefits in the new year.

First things first — Mowing. While you’ll clearly want your lawn to retain its healthy, manicured appearance we’d recommend only using your lawn mower sparingly. In particular we’d ask you to avoid mowing your lawn during periods of rainfall or frost. Failure to measure your efforts will result in a lawn that looks patchy and unhealthy at best.

You’ll also want to inspect your garden to clear moss, leaves and other debris. Moss tends to be found under garden fixtures including hedges and trees and can be treated easily with Mosskiller. Clear leaves and debris from the garden floor, but do so with the right tools. We’d recommend finding bespoke leaf sweepers — Available at DIY Outlets — and lawn vacuums.

Aeration Allows Your Lawn To Breathe

Aeration during the winter is highly beneficial. You can do this by employing spiking machines or easier still, your humble garden fork. Using these tools will allow your lawn to breathe. Puncture the ground firmly every 4 inches (10 cms) across your lawn.  This will alleviate compaction and improve drainage.

A word on those friendly earthworms. While turf is often referred to as ‘Natures Carpet’, worms are thought of as natures ‘Original Gardener’. And with good reason; Worms benefit the soil structure and nutrient content. So while many regard them as a hindrance, they are of immense benefit to the traditional garden lawn.

We hope you found this edition of Wiltshire Turf’s ‘Four Seasons Lawn Care’ useful. We’ll be updating this blog as we explore the following seasons soon. Visit our homepage @ Wiltshire-Turf.co.uk and contact us for more information.

 

Jan 03

Four Seasons Lawn Care

By admin | Turf

Customized Lawn Care For Every Season

As turf farmers and distributors Wiltshire Turf have worked in the landscape gardening industry for over 20 years. During that time we’ve experienced droughts, record rainfall and unusual climatic shifts, perhaps never more so than in 2012. Confronted with these challenges, many competitors have struggled. However, we’ve continued to grow.  This blog is designed to bring these insights to the fore.

Lawn Fundamentals

In this post we’ll briefly touch on lawn care essentials. Your lawn isn’t just for the summer, but for all seasons. Accordingly then, neglect in the winter and and lack of preparation in the spring will yield a lawn your less than proud of. Here we’ll explore the required hydration of your lawn, fertilizers and the seasonal differentials.

Hydration Is Vital During The Summer

During the summer your lawn requires ample water. Through these months, we’d recommend this is done in the morning to encourage the roots to thrive. Grass actually grows faster over this period, which is why many green fingered enthusiasts lower their lawn mower a notch and revert their routine for the rest of the year.

Autumn – A Balanced Approach

Established turf distributors understand the value of 4 seasons lawn care. Many turf professionals — and even golf courses — seed early. Turf farms typically wait until the autumn to reseed their field for the following summer. The autumn months offer natures balance; not too hot to warrant ongoing hydration, while frost is unlikely to settle.

The Winter Months – When Less Is More

While your lawn doesn’t require intensive treatment through the winter, it does benefit from care. We’d recommend a light servicing of natural agents. These include compost and other minerals to encourage earth worms and other microbial life that benefit the lawns overall appearance. We’ll include reviews of various products that will benefit the health and vigour of your lawn in future blog posts.

Jan 03

Spring Lawn Care

By admin | Turf

If you’ve followed our winter lawn care advice, you’ll know we recommend easing off during this quarter. Mowing during damp and frosty conditions is likely to undermine your lawns appearance. The first throes of spring afford you the opportunity to graduate your efforts, and primp and preen to your hearts delight.

After mowing, you’ll want go further. Moss thrives during cold and damp conditions.  It’s likely you’ll discover moss in shaded areas and at the feet of trees and hedges. While you’ll find an array of lawn products on the market, including the Rolling Lawn Scarifier, a simple garden rake will suffice. This step prepares your lawn for aeration and feeding.

Aeration And Fertilizer For Spring Lawn Care

We wouldn’t recommend a winter intensive application of aeration either, but doing so periodically throughout the year is still beneficial. An application of fertilizer is recommended during the spring and summer. Fertilizer hosts a variety of nutrients essential for a healthy lawn. Many brands of fertilizer possess weed and moss killer too. Perhaps we’ll post a review of fertilizers at some point in future.

There are different schools of thought on fertilizer use.  There are those who champion organic lawn care and decry the synthetic approach. We’re mindful and continue to observe contemporary research.

Thank you for reading this latest installment on 4 Season’s Lawn Care. Wiltshire Turf Deliveries pride ourselves of staying in tune with industry developments and offering the right advice to our clients. Stay tuned for the summer …

Consider visiting The Big Eco Directory – Practical gardening articles and links to other sources and suppliers.

Jan 03

Grass Seed v. Turf

By admin | Turf

Many customers query the benefits of lawn turf v. grass seed. While our industry is turf, we like to cite the benefits and disadvantages of both, so our customers can make an informed decision. Here we’ll run through the many factors you’ll need to take into consideration. These include budget, management and practicality. Let’s begin with grass seed.

While the initial ground preparation for either option is the same, grass seed tends to appeal to green fingered enthusiasts who work on a budget. Preparing your garden for a new lawn demands leveling and clearing the ground before sewing the seed. While raking the area, you’ll need to remove rocks, plants and other debris as you go. You’ll then need to disperse the seed evenly across the designated area. Here’s a checklist:

Advantages:

  • Cost
  • Easy dispersal
  • Requires the same preparation as turf.

Disadvantages:

  • Development takes months
  • Demands more TLC to become established
  • Best results are reserved for late summer/autumn.

Turf is ‘natures lawn’. It’s the hassle-free option for customers looking for a rapid and dramatic change in their gardens appearance. Of course, employing a turf contractor will ensure the heavy lifting is left to the professionals. A good turf contractor will also manage the nuance and development of your lawn. We often field enquiries weeks after laying turf. Learn more on our homepage.

Advantages:

  • You’ll witness a dramatic transformation
  • It’s more resilient to climatic extremes
  • Significantly less likely to be infested with weeds.

Disadvantages:

  • Turf is more expensive than seed
  • Turf needs to be laid shortly after delivery
  • Requires heavy lifting.

Turf isn’t for everybody; Some enjoy getting their hands dirty and take pride in developing their gardens on their own. However, this isn’t the primary concern for the majority of our customers. We take pride in the rapid transformation lawn turf offers a garden. Moreover, we never tire of witnessing our customers satisfaction.

Jan 03

How To Thrive During The Recession

By admin | Business

Latest figures reveal the UK has inched her way out of the recession. While the Euro is in turmoil and the American economy is fueled by debt, we’re ideally placed to weather global storm. Neither bound by the Euro and growing in spite of George Osborne’s “Savage” austerity measures, UK PLC is healthy in comparison to her partners.

2012 has been a curious year for turf distributors. If the recession hadn’t hit consumer confidence, a spring drought followed by record rainfall this summer had the potential to pull the industry under. Indeed, a national turf distributor made 6 figure losses during this period. With decades in the industry, Wiltshire Turf Deliveries were able to neutralize these environmental conditions and thrive. How …?

Evolve Or Perish …

Companies who thrive learn to adapt. At Wiltshire Turf, we’ve learnt to adapt our range of services to suit our customers needs. The garden design industry offers fresh opportunities for companies to diversify. These opportunities range from contemporary garden fixtures, fencing and decking. While turf remains for the most part a seasonal trade, these affiliate services are an opportunity to extend our customer relationship.

We’ve also taken another crucial step; We have increased our visibility. We’ve understood that our customers increasingly search for garden services online. While this site, Wiltshire Turf, ranks at #1 in Google, we continually strive to improve our visibility and develop our customer relationships. Think of your website as more than just an electronic business card. It’s an open platform for your customer to educate their senses before posing that first enquiry.

While the winter is effectively the turf industries ‘Off Season’, we’re making preparations for the new year. Over the coming months we’ll be updating and enhancing this website as we strive to further our reach. Please return shortly for further updates and contact us with your enquiries.