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Garden Club Garden Club

Garden Club meetings are held every two months throughout the year, normally on the fourth Monday in the month from 2-4 pm. Activities include talks, open gardens and plant swaps. There will be £1 per person payment for each meeting attended, to go towards the cost of speakers and refreshments. There will also be summer garden visits, both to local gardens and visits further afield.

Recent events:

Monday 23 June 2014: Afternoon visit to Sea Mere, at Hingham

Forty plus members of the Gardening Club attended the afternoon visit to Sea Mere at Hingham on 23 June on a gloriously sunny but sultry day. Judy Watson who manages the gardens and tours greeted us when we parked our cars in the farmyard and gave us a short history of the 300 acres of farmland which has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest because of the ancient woodland and wild flower meadows. The garden was created in the 1890s but more recently it has been restored and expanded. We visited a wild flower meadow before it was to be cut and then on to the formal garden, passing a pond which Judy told us turned into mud in the summer. We entered a walled garden with roses and then at the back of the house with the terraced lawns we overlooked the 20 acre circular mere which is now five metres deep but was 25 metres and contains pike, eel, perch and bream. The five acre garden includes a formal oval garden with herbaceous borders, woodland garden, shrub roses in the orchard and bamboo glade with a wire sculpture. Some of us admired what turned out to be Monkshood and were informed that the plant was very poisonous. Having come to the end of the tour it was time for tea and cake when there was a sudden downpour and some people got wet!

This garden is a treat and well worth visiting and thank you Pam for organising this visit and Jan for helping with the teas.

Julie Lane

Tuesday 29 July 2014: Afternoon visit to Fullers Mill Garden, at West Stow

 On a very warm day, 22 people met at Fullers Mill, West Stow, to visit the gardens. We were met by the 90 year old Bernard Tickner, who, with his wife, created from scratch the gardens surrounding the mill cottage. In 2012 Fullers Mill Garden was gifted to Perennial (the Gardeners Royal Benevolent Society) but remains fully funded by Mr. Tickner.

Bernard explained a little about the origins of the property – fulling was a process whereby cloth was fed through a series of wooden mallets, powered by water, which caused the cloth to felt, or become fuller – hence Fullers Mill. The earliest record of a mill on this site is dated 1458, since then many mills were built and destroyed.

The gardens are divided into four main areas, with the River Lark and a small stream running through, and the mill pond, but with minimum hard landscaping. One area, the Quandary, was so named as Bernard and his wife couldn’t decide what to call it! Bernard knew little about gardening all those years ago, but read widely and was influenced by Graham Stuart Thomas, Christopher Lloyd, Beth Chatto, Margery Fish and other plantsmen and women.

Plants are matched to the conditions of each area, as the soil varies from very dry and sandy to moist and loamy. At this time of the year lilies are spectacular, as well as huge white heads of Hydrangea arborescens and many more unusual plants such as Veratrum nigrum (black false hellebore) and Romneya, the native flower of California. Around the mill pond and the river numerous dragonflies can be seen, whilst many of the plants attract butterflies and bees. After the delights of the garden, we enjoyed tea and cakes in the shade of the trees.

Many thanks to Pam for arranging this visit which was so enjoyable.

Wednesday 26 November 2014 The Lamb Inn, Orford Place, Norwich

We are returning to a favourite venue for the November meeting. Conveniently positioned in the city and always good value.

Come and join us at 12.00 for lunch at 12.30. All members welcome.

Bookings please to Jane Dye or telephone 01603 744487 by Tuesday 18th November.

Holidays and Outings Holidays and Outings

This is a preliminary note concerning three outings we are planning for next year.

April 2015 (second half) London Theatre matinee.

Wednesday, 10 June 2015 Eltham Palace, followed by a Thames Cruise from Greenwich to Westminster.

We will be using City and Village Tours for this outing.

September (second half) Tour of Broadcasting House, London with free time in the surrounding area.

Full details and reply slips will appear in the March Renaissance.Alan Coddington

1 - 6 June 2015: Bournemouth

This year, if there is enough interest, we would like to go, with Saga again, to The Queens Hotel in Bournemouth, which can accommodate us for 5 nights beginning June 1st. 2015.

The cost is £469 which gives us half board plus 2 excursions (one to Beaulieu Mansion and one to Swanage with Old Harry cruise)

As always,because there are fewer single rooms than doubles, the single rooms will have to be allocated on a first come first served basis, so if you would like a single room but are prepared to share if necessary please let me know. We will, of course, arrange transport, the cost of which will depend on the number of people using it.

If you would like to join us on this holiday, please email me at with the following information:

  • Name & address
  • Telephone number
  • Email address
  • Single room or prepared to share
  • Require transport.

I have reserved a number of rooms but these can only be held for about 2 weeks, so I would appreciate it if you could let me know if you are interested as soon as possible.

Jean Hayhoe