As we have all enjoyed a fantastically hot July, I have been working in the glasshouses at the Horticultural Centre in Wythenshawe Park, for as much time as I could stand in the heat. I mentioned in February this year, when I installed the rustic entrance-ways, that a planting scheme would be approved and funded by the society. I began this work in June, having a fun day out with some of the lovely people from the society, choosing and buying some of the plants. It took an awful lot of preparatory work, clearing roots and weeds before I could plant any of the new stock. I was fortunate enough to have some willing volunteers, Sarah and Chris’s team, helping with weeding, cutting back and clearing, in order to complete the planting project. I planted ground cover plants like Calathea and beautiful flowering plants like Arum lilies, as well as some of the bigger, slower growing plants such as Dicksonia Antartica and Cycas Revoluta. I had fantastic help from Mack and Chris, who helped with the planting and clearing for four days. It was challenging planting the Bromeliads, which I set in vertical columns of cork, woodchip and compost. I chose Jasmine and grapevines for the new entrances I fitted earlier in the year, to allow them to grow around them and compliment the rustic feel. It has been a great contract, and although it has been difficult at times I have enjoyed it. I am looking forward to seeing the plants grow and the impact they will have on the centre. Finally I would just like to say a great big thanks to Mary for all the cups of tea – top one girl you’re a star! Another contract I have been working on this month was for a lovely lady called Beryl, who asked me to turn her high maintenance front garden into a low maintenance front garden (see gallery for before and after photo’s). I was kind of sad to do this job as her front garden was lovely but I could understand the need for a much simpler garden. I found a good home for many of the plants that were removed and was careful to recycle the stone and blocks. A big thanks to Beryl for the steady flow of drinks as it was a bit hot for all that digging. The job was going lovely, too good even, so what do you know, the van broke down, and it took the best part of three days to get it working again, but I still managed to finish the job in a week. I also gave a very large hedge a hair cut for the Lord of the Verges and ensured his hedge was not infringing on the public footpath for us lesser mortals. Rather good, what!