Churchyard Update (14/2)

By Tim Hewitt, St Mary’s Head Gardener/ Community Gardener

This week, we are focused on planting some big stuff. We have been offered a Walnut tree, which will be a fine addition to the Old Yard, if it transplants successfully.

There is also room between monuments for other trees, with a Magnolia also being considered.

In Vinegar Alley, we are preparing for the arrival of three Sweet Chestnut trees, which will give some long-lasting alternative structure to the site. Roses and Clematis will also be introduced.

It is also a good time of year to reinvigorate compost heaps by turning them. Adding oxygen at a time when the material is reliably wet charges up microbial activity and speeds up decomposition. We hope to see the heaps heat up significantly because of this.

Mild weather will further encourage bulb growth. So, in addition to Snowdrops, Cyclamen and Crocus, Narcissi will be out this week too. Hellebore, Pulmonaria and Primrose add to the early Spring scene in Vinegar Alley.

Quote of the Week

“What…the Japanese do with a garden is take the essence of nature and distil it – just as a poet does.” -Isamu Noguchi, sculptor

Volunteer Times

St Mary’s offers weekly supervised volunteering in the churchyard at these times:

Tuesdays: 1pm to 3.30pm

Wednesdays: 1pm to 4pm 

Thursdays: 1pm to 4pm

Fridays: 1pm to 4pm

There’s no need to book; just turn up, preferably with your own gloves. Tools and expert instruction will be provided!

Burials in Bloom 2022 

Dozens of local people have adopted a grave to plant around and care for; if you would like to adopt a grave that’s currently not visited or looked after, contact me at


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *