Read about the life and work of the Attingham Wardens

Attingham Park is a National Trust property comprising of an 18th Century mansion set in a Repton landscape; the Park and wider Estate includes a deer park, walled garden, several miles of the rivers Severn and Tern, extensive farmland and woodlands.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Crocuses, daffs and half term

             Gorgeous crocuses are popping up
around the park
Well, there's no denying it - spring is definitely on the way. The crocuses are appearing on the bank near the tea room and rookery wood in a cheerful spattering of white, purple and lilac and today, as I drove along the Mile Walk emptying the dog bins (not the most glamorous of weekly jobs but hey, someone's got to do it!), I saw the first daffodils in flower along the river walk. The snowdrops are still out in their full glory but I'm already looking forward to the sunny display of golden daffs.

It's half term this week and families have flocked to Attingham to enjoy a day in the park. There is a trail for children to follow as they look for trees around the grounds and collect a prize at the end, and the deer are being fed at 2pm each day for the public to watch and enjoy.

Well-rotted muck makes an ideal mulch for the
border shrubs
This week has also seen a lot of new volunteers join the warden team as they come for taster sessions and find out more about what we do. Yesterday, our hardworking volunteers put a mammoth effort in mulching the Ice House shrubs and Spring Gardens with muck, coppicing and burning dogwood near the Tern and resurfacing the entrance to the Deer Park with gravel to make it easier (and drier) to walk along the path. The small bonfire attracted a lot of attention from passers-by as they came to see what we were doing; the dogwood is regularly coppiced every three or four years to keep it at a manageable size. One visitor even came to rescue an armful of cuttings before they ended up in the fire, to use as part of her flower arrangement at home. I'd never thought of it before, but the deep red colours would really make a pretty addition to bunches of flowers. Next time we are coppicing, I may take a few pieces and give it a go myself!

The dogwood is coppiced the keep it under control;
regrowth will be quick and vigorous

The fire is roped off at the end of the day to keep
people away from the hot ashes

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