Well what can I say about the weather since the last Newsletter except PHEW, what a scorcher! Then as I write this, we’ve just had our first frost and to add to the mix of those extremes a couple of storms or three have been thrown in to keep us on our toes, trying to do damage limitation to plants and garden structures.  The Show, Why and How – I thought for this year’s show report I would try and break down to the basics why and how Heswall Gardening Society runs an annual flower show. WHY – Heswall has had a flower show most years (apart from the War Years) since the 1890s. Surely a tradition worth keeping. The show is a link and a showcase for the Society and the people of Heswall and enables gardeners, floral artists, cooks and photographers to display the results of their hobbies in a competitive but friendly atmosphere. HOW – To organise a successful show we need to: Hire a suitable venue i.e. Heswall Hall Contact local competitors to enter the show, by putting together a range of show classes and listing them in a published schedule. Advertise the show to the public, through posters and in the local press. On show day, display the exhibits in an attractive manner. Cover our costs, by charging a small but fair entry fee to visiting public, selling refreshments and running a raffle and plant stall. Asking local businesses to advertise in the show schedule or sponsor show classes. Results for 2018 –Despite some adverse weather conditions but with the invaluable help of our volunteers and exhibitors, we were once again able to put together a successful show with a modest financial surplus. Dave Rosser (Show Manager) Trip Report Hardwick Hall – Our first stop on our way to Lincoln was to Hardwick Hall built in the 1500s, the home of the formidable “Bess of Hardwick”.  The gardens were a carnival of colour of every shade, from white through to deep reds and purples, the planting influenced by the famous Gertrude Jekyll. The highlights of the gardens for me were the umbrella trees in front of the house, the well stocked vegetable and herb garden which grew both culinary and medicinal herbs and lots of sweet smelling roses, many introduced by the last Lady of Hardwick, Duchesse Evelyn. We had our picnic lunch in deckchairs under the apple trees in the orchard before exploring the Elizabethan mansion full of amazing tapestries and portraits, including one of Bess herself.   Lots of other portraits hung in the long gallery, from where you could make out through the windows the initials ”ES” on the turrets for Elizabeth Shrewsbury, the builder of the house.  We just had time for an ice cream before departing for the Petwood Hotel. Sue Linley
Newsletter 74 Autumn/Winter 2018
Heswall Gardening Society