Victorian plants are to be found in some plots, including pre-1900 snowdrops. The garden tended by Plant Heritage (formerly NCCPG) has garden cultivars which were at risk of disappearing from commercial cultivation or even faced extinction. Many are excellent plants which have just fallen out of fashion.
The apples and pears are a special feature of Hill Close. Most of the 63 different varieties were found when the rampant brambles and ivy were cleared away. Apple Day in October is a highlight of the year, when there is the opportunity to taste some of the more rare varieties, receive advice about the cultivation of apples and take part in other activities.
The RHS partnership scheme links together selected UK gardens of horticultural importance and interest with free entry to these gardens for RHS members. Participating gardens gain from regular national publicity and other supporting benefits such as training days.
Every year we participate in Plant Heritage’s Plant Exchange scheme for ‘at risk’ plants, whereby up to eighty different cultivars are offered or received. Many are planted on Plot 17. The Plant Heritage National Collection of hardy chrysanthemums is another part of the Trust’s commitment to plant conservation.
Just as our Victorian predecessors prized their fruit, so we do today. Dependent on season, we sell a wide variety of our produce.
We particularly value our tree fruit such as Quince, Medlar, Mulberry, Fig, Plum, Pear, and of course Apples in profusion.
Blossom in spring, shade in summer, fruit in autumn, and then juice for winter – what’s not to love!
Our soft fruit includes strawberries, raspberries, gooseberries, currants; also rhubarb and vines.
Similarly we follow the Victorians (see list below of a plot sale in the 1870’s) in cultivating kale, many herbs, peas, runner beans, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, onions, tomatoes, cucumbers and asparagus.
More recent arrivals are courgettes, fennel, marrows, pumpkins, artichokes, maize, and pak choi and much more besides.