Hardy Plant Society (Middlesex Group)

HPS MIDDLESEX GROUP (HPSMG)
SPRING NEWSLETTER - MARCH 2021

At last, spring is slowly arriving and we are able to get out into our gardens in the warmth of the spring sunshine.  This newsletter brings up-dates from us at Hardy Plant Society Middlesex Group, with much-appreciated contributions from members on their conservation plants, and also some updates from HPS National.  We hope you enjoy it and find it useful. 

Adam Pasco, Zoom Talk, Monday, 29 March at 7.30 pm
‘CREATE A GARDEN FOR ALL SEASONS’

‘Create A Garden For All Seasons’ was the topic choice that received the most votes by members from Adam’s list. We will be sending out the Zoom link to you all nearer the time.  Meanwhile, below is Adam’s description of the talk, which we hope as many members as possible will be able to join.

“Would you like to look out onto a beautiful garden all-year-round filled with some of the best performing flowers, hardy perennials, bulbs, shrubs, ornamental trees and colourful seasonal plants available?
In this illustrated talk Adam includes practical planning and design tips to help you plant a garden that provides colour and interest throughout the year. Adam also gives planting suggestions for long-lasting colour combinations and monthly showstoppers to enjoy in different seasons.
As well as ‘tried and tested’ favourites that are guaranteed to perform year after year he also introduces some unusual varieties and highlights flowers and plants new to the market. Plants are recommended for different soils, sites and situations, helping fill every corner of the garden and patio with colour.
With photographs and videos taken in Adam’s home garden in Peterborough and at some of the best gardens around the country, this talk will feature plants that provide a long period of colour through the year. Emphasis will also be given to planting combinations and plants that provide continuity of colour with more than one season of interest.
From hardy perennials to climbers, roses to seasonal bulbs, grasses to succulents, and even easy plants to raise from seed, Adam’s illustrated talk is sure to inspire!”
We will be sending out the Zoom link for the talk to everyone nearer the time.

*STOP PRESS NEWS* We know that many of you were concerned and offered your suggestions regarding the only funds we had not been able to reclaim back from the Agents of one of the Speakers for the cancelled PAPs event.  This has been wrangling on for almost a year now, however, we are pleased to report that Lynn has continued her tenacious efforts on this and she is now pleased to report that we are to receive a full refund of the deposit of £500 back into HPSMG’s bank account.  Much time and effort has gone into this by Carol and Lynn over the past year and is a great relief, with a significant outstanding amount going back into Group funds, which at one stage did not seem at all likely.
 
HPSMG OUTINGS 2021: Please email us your interest in either of these two trips as we need to know numbers before we can book: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Church Gardens, Harefield: Wednesday 14 July 2021 at 10.30 amEntrance £10, includes cake and refreshments.  Members will need to use their own cars or public transport for this trip.  By CAR:  follow the postcode UB9 6DU to Church Hill and enter down through the height restriction barrier into St Mary’s Church car park or outside the church.  By BUS: No 331 and U9 buses to Church Hill Stop, then a 2 minute walk.  We can all meet at the entrance in good time for a 10.30 am start. https://www.churchgardens.co.uk/copy-of-visit-us

RHS Garden Wisley Flower Show: Wednesday, 8 September 2021.  Group visit for up to maximum of 15 people travelling on a community bus; or you may prefer to drive yourself and we can all meet there.  Please let us know if you intend to travel by the community bus OR by your own transport AND also if you are an RHS member - as there is FREE entrance for RHS members - https://www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley/RHS-Garden-Wisley-Flower-Show
 
A reminder that we are aiming to start meetings again in September 2021 to pick up the Speaker Programme from last year, please note there are a couple of changes as follows:

HPSMG Group Speaker Programme for 2021 – (COVID Restrictions Allowing)

SEPTEMBER 6th:  Dr Brenda Harold: ‘How Plants Control Animals’

OCTOBER 4th:  *David Hurrion: ‘Pruning’ or ‘The World of Plants in Our Back Gardens’ or ‘Designing to Conceal Unwanted Views and Buildings’ (email us at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. your preferred topic choice).

NOVEMBER 1st:  Bob Brown: ‘Plants Grow in Dirt’

DECEMBER 6th:  Val Bourne: ‘Roses and Peonies’: A Marriage Made in Heaven – Speaker to confirm.  The December Group meeting will include a Christmas social of mulled wine and mince pies (subject to COVID restrictions at the time).

*David Hurrion has an excellent website and he also produces an extremely good fortnightly Newsletter which you can subscribe to for free from his website @ www.davidhurrion.com

Brian’s Plant Sales Cancelled: Unfortunately, Brian has informed us that due to the new COVID regulations, he will be unable to hold the 3 public plant sales planned for this year and bookings for the Community Hut will be cancelled.  He wishes us all well for the spring and summer and hopes to see us all, at what we all hope will be our next Group meeting, in September 2021

HPSMG Committee/Helper Vacancies:
As we all know, the success of our local Middlesex Hardy Plant Society is dependent upon volunteers whose work is very much appreciated. 

Currently, we are still short of Committee members AND volunteer helpers in order to organise and progress the Group through 2021 and beyond.   This is a good way to become involved in running your local Society at a local level. During the pandemic, our Committee has been using Zoom for meetings and it is likely that this will continue, as well as meeting in person, enabling participation by members more widely across the county. 

If you, or anyone you know would be interested in joining us as a Committee member or helper, we would love to welcome people on board.  We would like to be able to reach out more widely to our local community and make the most of the positivity and recognition around the benefits of being involved more closely with plants, gardens and community spaces.  We hope more people will join us in helping to provide an enjoyable, informative, relaxed and encouraging appreciation of hardy plants in our local community.  We would be pleased to hear from any interested potential Committee members, helper volunteers or new members at any time by email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Conservation Scheme:
Thank you to all who have contributed so far and to those who have yet to do so.  
We took delivery of our plants in September 2019 and can now report on the year with our charges:

Chrysanthemum Dulwich Pink  -  Linda Martin  
 Chrysanthemum Dulwich Pink 2           Chrysanthemum Dulwich Pink
 
     Chrysanthemum Dulwich Pink - Planted in October 2019 as a poor looking specimen but by October 2020 this is what it
     looked like. South facing aspect and blooms lasted until December.  No cuttings this year but our dog broke a stem, which is now
     in our veg patch in anticipation! Linda Martin
 

                                                                                            Phlox Lady Grey  - Linda MartinPhlox Lady Grey 1

 

Phlox Lady Grey - I thought it was dead, but again one stem with lots of flowers. 

Markings not as distinct as photos on details from the Society.  Linda Martin










 

Chrysanthemum “Picasso”- From Wendy Jones      

Chrysanthemum Picasso
“The plant did really well and I must apologise that I didn’t think to photograph it when it was flowering at its peak; the photo attached was taken this morning after all that rain but you can see just how many flowers there were.

I didn’t take any cuttings this year as the plant was still getting established but I will try when the new shoots emerge next spring.

Having said that, in the summer the dog accidentally broke off a shoot which came away with a bit of root so that plant is now in my sister’s garden down in Hampshire. Fingers crossed the plants survive the winter.” Wendy Jones
 







Erysimum 'Ruston Royal – Ros Bryar
Erysimum Ruston Royal


The Erysimum 'Ruston Royal', planted in Greenford, has put on quite a bit of growth in 2020 but it did not flower. 

This could be because it is in a bed that is in shade for most of the day. 
 
I am currently clearing this bed and will be planting the Erysimum in a more sunny location so hopefully it might flower this year.  Ros Bryar




 
 
We would love to see any more photos to come from members? …………………………..
 

A Free Virtual Flower Show
The Virtual Flower Show 
from Dibleys Nurseries and dozens of fellow top gold medal winning exhibitors
Our next show is 17 and 18 April 2021 and is absolutely free.

https://www.virtualflowershow.uk/3d-virtual-floral-hall?
https://www.virtualflowershow.uk/3d-virtual-floral-hall?

  • Local and Specialist HPS Group Zoom Talks:
HPS National are now advertising local and specialist HPS groups’ Zoom Talks on their website: hhttps://www.hardy-plant.org.uk/for-members/zoom-talks
  • National AGM:
The North East Group will be hosting this Year’s National AGM on 25th September. This will be the first Autumn AGM so an ideal opportunity to make a long weekend and explore some northern gardens.
  • National Seed Distribution:
Diane Puncheon has asked us to let members know that this year’s seeds, distributed by HPS National, were sent out in several batches, with the last of the UK seed orders having now been posted out.


That’s all from us at HPSMG for the time being, enjoy your spring gardening.  Meanwhile, we hope as many members as possible will be able to join our first Zoom Talk with Adam Pasco on Monday, 29 March at 7.30 pm.  Please look out for the link which we will send to everyone nearer the time.

Due to COVID-19 we are very sorry to announce the CANCELLATION of Passionate About Plants, Saturday 4 April 2020.  All ticket purchases will be refunded.

"This Constitution was not adopted on 4 March 2019 and therefore will be revisited and reviewed by HPS Middlesex Group members and its Committee over the forthcoming year."

2019_HPSMG_CONSTITUTION.pdf

We organise a varied programme of trips to gardens, shows, and nurseries. You can see pictures from our previous trips on our picture gallery.

Payments: Contact the treasurer if you have a query. Payments can be made through Paypal or cheque payable to HPS Middlesex www.hpsmiddlesex.org.uk

You can find our booking policy at the foot of this page. Keep checking the website or our Facebook Page to keep up to date.

HPSMG OUTINGS 2021
 
Please email us your interest in either of these two trips as we need to know numbers before we can book: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Church Gardens, Harefield: Wednesday 14 July 2021 at 10.30 amEntrance £10, includes cake and refreshments.  Members will need to use their own cars or public transport for this trip.  By CAR:  follow the postcode UB9 6DU to Church Hill and enter down through the height restriction barrier into St Mary’s Church car park or outside the church.  By BUS: No 331 and U9 buses to Church Hill Stop, then a 2 minute walk.  We can all meet at the entrance in good time for a 10.30 am start. https://www.churchgardens.co.uk/copy-of-visit-us

RHS Garden Wisley Flower Show: Wednesday, 8 September 2021.  Group visit for up to maximum of 15 people travelling on a community bus; or you may prefer to drive yourself and we can all meet there.  Please let us know if you intend to travel by the community bus OR by your own transport AND also if you are an RHS member - as there is FREE entrance for RHS members - https://www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley/RHS-Garden-Wisley-Flower-Show
 
 
 

Read our Bookings PolicyDay Trips

Prada Rustica Dec prize

Prada Rustica -‘love stone, create stone’

I started hand-crafting ‘stone-effect’ planters as a relaxing, therapeutic venture for myself and a fundraising initiative for my then school-aged daughter to fund a charitable challenge to build school out-buildings in Africa. Unexpectedly, the planters proved so popular, planted-up with my own planting combinations, I had to continue to make them; thus my small business, ‘PradaRustica’, was born. I now sell from home or at local markets and fairs.

For me the planters reflect the rugged Lakeland stone walls and traditional stone troughs of my native Cumbria as well as the iconic Italian tufa stone buildings of ancient Rome and the elegant tufa stone features which still adorn the classical gardens of Italy, the country where my husband’s grandfather originated. These influences have inspired my love of stone and my love to ‘create stone’, needless to say on a much smaller scale! Indeed, you may already know about the similar materials I use to create a form of ‘hyper-tufa’, probably made most famous by Geoff Hamilton for his viewers to ‘have a go’ at creating their own Alpine troughs.

I create my planters to attain a traditional, natural stone-effect, at a fraction of the cost of real stone, which I then plant-up with my own planting combinations. These include my own favourite Alpines and hardy plants, which I admire for defying the harshest of times, together with the fleeting beauty of seasonal plants which simply live for the moment.

My small business venture therefore started as a short-term fundraising and therapeutic adventure, but has turned into the long-term small business of ‘PradaRustica’ which continues to give therapeutic value and charitable donations. Each unique planter has been designed and individually hand-crafted by me to resemble natural stone, creating a blend of elegant form and traditional rustic country-style. Having already been ‘cured’ for 28 days the planters are created to weather outdoors over time or to provide a naturalistic indoor planter. The porous material provides excellent aeration and drainage for plants to thrive in a naturalistic environment.

As the newly elected Secretary of HPSMG, I look forward to meeting you all and becoming more involved in the Society. I will be joining the HPSMG at Eastcote House Gardens on a neighbouring stall on Saturday, 8 June. If you would like any further information regarding my planters, please do not hesitate to take a look at my website or contact me direct on 020 8866 6292 or email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Brenda Prada - HPSMG Group Secretary