Outings, Meetings and Events 


Thursday 12 Oct 2023, 7:30 p.m., Fungi - the good, the bad and the ugly with Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan is an English mycologist with 26 books to his name but probably best known as the author of "The Encyclopaedia of Fungi of Britain and Europe". He is founder and Chairman of the Association of British Fungal Groups (ABFG).

Thursday 9 November 2023, 7:30 p.m., The Making of a City Garden with Matthew Symonds

Mathew Symonds has recently won the 2023 B & Q Gardener of the Year competition. He has a small city garden in Bristol, just 21 x 18 feet, split on two levels with lots of trees, a pond, greenhouse, two seating areas and a bike store plus lots of plants. He is going to tell us about the making of this. 

* * *

In 2023, so far, we started our year with the AGM and Annual Quiz Evening in January and listened to Jane Moore who talked about "Crops in Small Spots". In March, Chris Sperring MBE addressed the subject of "ReWilding" and in April Sally Gregson focused on "Hydrangeas". Our first day trip this year was made to Chideock Manor in Bridport on 20 April. May brought a talk about a Victorian Head Gardener and in June we visited Deans Court in Wimborne and Houghton Lodge Gardens in Stockport. The, Sally Nex talked to us about a low carbon way of gardening.


This year, 2022, we have managed a number of events. On 8 February twenty of us went on a garden visit to Camerton Court near Bath to enjoy this 20 acre garden with a fabulous snowdrop display. In February about 40 members gathered in the Town Hall for the AGM followed by a quiz and on 10 March we were treated to a talk by Mary Payne M. Hort. (RHS) MBE about "Compton Acres - Revisited". In April we had an evening about hedgehogs followed by "Influences on Indian Gardens" in May and a trip to the Walled Gardens in Cannington as well as Greencombe in Somerset and in June Compton Acres in Pool. In September, Timothy Walker spoke to us on the subject "What have plants ever done for us?". We had a feast of photography with Rosemary Legrand showing us her pictures taken in Japanese Gardens in October. In November James Cross, the Head Gardener at the Bishops Palace and our Club's President, found time to talk to us.


In the summer months we managed to make a number of visits to fabulous local gardens. In June we visited Stoberry Park with breath-taking views over the City of Wells and the Vale of Avalon, walled garden, ponds, wildflower meadow, sunken garden, potager, lime walk and plenty of benches to sit and relax. In July we were once again welcomed by James Cross at the Bishop's Palace Garden and wandered about on a beautiful summer's evening. In August Simon Tudway Quilter kindly agreed to allow our club exclusive access to the 5 acre garden on the lower slopes of the Mendips. There were some interesting walks into the arboretum, along the terraces, herbaceous borders, rose beds and swimming pool with splendid views of the City of Wells. In September we saw Yeo Valley Garden In Blagdon. In October we managed to visit Lady Farm at Chelwood, which was a treat. And in December we were treated to enjoying the festive Bishops Palace and illuminated gardens.


We had lots of plans for this year but then... the Pandemic got in the way.  In January we held our AGM with a quiz, raffle and refreshments. In February we met again and listened to a talk by Alan Power from Stourhead: "A Journey Through Great Gardens". Our last actual meeting before the Corona Pandemic happened was on March 12, when we were treated to a talk by Andrew Tolman from the Walled Gardens of Cannington and Greencombe in Somerset on the subject of "Stumperies, Ferns and Shady Friends".   The meetings from April 2020 until the end of the year had to be cancelled. We missed out in April on the subject of "GreenDaffodils and Wonderful Weeds" - a plant tour of Morocco by Rosemary Fitzgerald. In April we would have also made a garden visit to the Walled Gardens of Cannington and Greencombe near Porlock.  For May we had planned a meeting with a talk by wildlife photographer Colin Varndell about "The Hedghog Predicament" and we sadly had to shelf plans for a garden visit to The Shute House in Donhead St Mary, Stogumber Open Gardens in the Quantocks, Kiftsgate Court and Deans Court in Wimbourne Minster in Dorset.  We were very sad that we could not welcome Nick Bailey of Gardeners' World to hear him talk to us in September. We also had to cancel Christine Stones talking about "Gardens of the First World War" and Julie Henderson ending our year with "The Twelve Plants of Christmas".