August has seen the completion of many of our ongoing projects. We started the month celebrating the fantastic work by our supervisor Craig Lancastle and his team at Crest Nicholson, Tadpole Garden Village in Swindon. Followed by the success of the installation of allotments and a greenhouse at Audley Luxury Retirement Village, Bristol. We also revisited The Lamplighters pub, Shirehampton where we restored the boat and completed the building beach huts.
With school holidays we had the privilege of sharing knowledge of our industry with a young man who came all the way from Co Wicklow in Ireland for work experience. It’s fantastic to know our reputation reaches far and wide. Thomas Keedwell spent the week working in our Ground Maintenance division alongside supervisors Tom and Robert. He wanted to experience the workplace during his school holidays whilst over here with his family. Thomas has proven himself a very useful member of the team and shown an aptitude for gardening. Offering work experience is something that we pride ourselves with at Elmtree and is a key way for the younger generation to get a feel for what the job entails.
Elmtree are also looking forward to welcoming our two new apprentices who finished school this July. They will be starting in our Grounds Maintenance division this September. Watch this space to see how they are getting on.
We recently landscaped the show home and sales complex at Bellway Homes Wickwar. Including Tegula setts paving, a timber arbour, tree and shrub planting and turfing. We also landscaped the open space on the site entrance, this consisted of planting trees and specimen shrubs, laying lawn turf and wildflower turf. As well as undertaking landscaping to the sales cabin for Bovis Homes including timber fencing to the perimeter and some planting.
August also was the start of Channel 5 documentary ‘Big Week at the Zoo’ where the team went behind the scenes of the brand-new Bear Wood exhibit. If you haven’t seen it already you can watch it on catch up. The episode aired on Aug 23rd 2019 and shows the arrival of the new bear residents. Well worth a watch!
It was fantastic to see our hard work put to good use and to see visitors enjoying their experience of Bear Wood at The Wild Place Project this summer.
Keeping the bear theme going we also went on our very own mini bear trail in and around Bristol Shopping Quarter. This summer saw the little bears hidden around Bristol town where families could explore the area whilst hunting down 24 mini bear figures places in shop windows. We are very excited to place our bear Woody is his new home but not before he has a tour of a few local schools to meet the children.
As the summer comes to and end and the new school terms are about to start we have been putting the finishing touches to a lovely spiritual sensory garden that we have built for St Teresa’s School in Monks Park, Bristol. The prayer garden is an exciting addition to the school and will provide the children and teachers with a tranquil place to worship and pray together and individually, enriching their relationship with God.
So…. What else? As September approaches we will see a cooler month and the start of late summer turns into Autumn
While there’s not as much to do in the garden at this time of the year, if you have a fruit or vegetable patch, you’ll be busy reaping the rewards of harvest. It’s also time to get out and start planting spring-flowering bulbs for next year and you can collect seeds for next summer’s colour too. Make the most of the remaining warmth while you can!
Essential checklist for September
- Buy spring bulbs
- Plant bulbs for colour at Christmas and Spring
- Dead head roses
- Rake lawn, aerate and apply autumn fertiliser
- Sow new lawns
Last chance to…
- Take cuttings/divide up perennials
- Start planting out spring bulbs
- Extend the colour in your garden by planting out bulbs from mid-September. Below are some of our favourites and when you can expect them to bloom ensuring you have colour throughout spring.
If you are looking for a way to use up harvest fruit why not try this;
Raspberry Jam recipe:
Ingredients (makes about 3 jam jars & keeps for about 6 months):
- 500g raspberries
- 500g white granulated sugar
- Zest of a lemon
- Preheat the oven to 200F/Gas 2
- Put 3 small plates in the freezer to chill
- Pour the ingredients into a large pan on the hob and cook on a low heat until the berries melt into the sugar. You shouldn’t be able to see any sugar crystals
- Once dissolved, bring to the boil for 5 minutes
- Take off the heat and take a cold plate from the freezer and drop a teaspoon of jam on it. You’ll need to leave it for about a minute to see if it sets – if you can see the surface wrinkling it means your jam is ready to put into the jam jars
- If still runny, place back onto the heat and bring to the boil for another couple of minutes before testing again – repeat this step until set
- Once set, take off the heat, and remove any scum from surface and leave to cool for 5 minutes.
- Pour into your jam jars with a ladle and secure the lids.
- Store in a cool, dark cupboard