Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Growing poppys


According to Christopher Grey-Wilson, in his book, Poppies, the name may orginate from the sound made by chewing the seeds, or from the Celtic word papa, a liquid food for infants, as poppy juice was given to crying babies to help them sleep.

There are about 50 botanical species, which grow wild over most of the world except the tropics, but there are many more named varieties in cultivation – the Royal Horticultural Society’s Plant Finder lists 374 kinds of poppy available to gardeners in this country.
They include perennials (plants that live for many years) biennials (plants that grow one year and flower the next, sometimes surviving a few years as short-lived perennials) and annuals (which grow and flower in the same season before dying).

Buy potted plants or grow from seed

Perennial poppies are best bought as named varieties in pots.

Biennials are sometimes sold in much the same way as bedding plants but are easy to grow from seed and annual poppies, are far better grown from seed.

Poppies thrive in 

Well-drained soil and full sun.

Individual flowers normally only last for a day or so but each plant produces an awful lot of them over quite a long season.
Deadheading would take ages but by leaving the plants to set seed you’ll enjoy the fat seed-heads that follow on from them.

The Poppy

Although barely anything survived in the muddy wasteland of the Western Front, by a miracle of nature one flower not only bloomed but thrived. The fact that the flowers were bright scarlet added to the uncanny aptness of the symbolism: the fragile red petals vividly suggested the spilt blood of the millions of young men who had died, while the growth of these flowers against all the odds represented hope in the face of despair.

Since the end of the conflict the poppy has been an inter nationally recognised sign of remembrance.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Remembrance Sunday 9th November Services

Each year in November, the United Kingdom remembers the men and women who gave their lives in the two World Wars and subsequent conflicts.

11 November is known as Armistice Day, Remembrance Day or Poppy Day.

During the First World War, on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the guns of the Western Front fell silent after more than four years of continuous warfare. In many parts of the world, people observe a two-minute of silence at 11am on 11 November.

Remembrance Sunday is the second Sunday in November, the Sunday nearest to 11 November.

ASHFORD - Service at Ashford War Memorial, Fordbridge Road. Band of the Royal Engineers will lead the parade at 10.40am

CHERTSEY: Remembrance Sunday service at Lyne and Longcross Church, Lyne Lane, Lyne, Chertsey, KT16 0AJ at 10am concluding at the War Memorial outside

CHERTSEY: A Weekend of Remembrance - an exhibition commemorating the fallen of Lyne and Longcross at Holy Trinity, Lyne and Longcross Church, Lyne Lane, Lyne, Chertsey, KT16 0AJ from November 8 to 11

SHEPPERTON - Service at Shepperton War memorial, bottom of the High Street, at 10.30am

STAINES - Parade and service at Staines War Memorial, Town Hall, at 11am

BEDFONT:  St Mary's, Bedfont Green at 9.30am followed by a wreath laying ceremony at 10.45am.

BRENTFORD:  Brentford for a wreath laying ceremony followed by a service of remembrance at 10:45am.

CHISWICK: Procession leaving Chiswick Town Hall at 10.30am to proceed to the memorial for a wreath laying ceremony followed by a service of remembrance at Christ Church, Turnham Green.

CRANFORD: The war memorial for a wreath laying ceremony at 10.45am followed by a service of remembrance at Holy Angels Church at 11am.

FELTHAM: A service of dedication at the war memorial starting at 2.45pm.

HESTON: A service of remembrance at St Leonard's Church, Heston at 10.50am.

HOUNSLOW: A service of remembrance at Holy Trinity Church, High Street, Hounslow at 10am.

HANWORTH: A service of remembrance at the War Memorial. The parade will leave the Royal British Legion, 22 Cross Road at 10.15am.

ISLEWORTH: A service of remembrance at Isleworth Cenotaph at 11am. The parade commences at The Royal British Legion Club, 5-6 North Street, Isleworth at 10.30am.

Let your lawns grow / have a wild area to your garden - help the bees, butterflies


Scientists warn that British bees are in serious decline with 71 of our wild bee species under threat and more than 20 already extinct. Loss of habitat and forage are the main problems facing wild bees.

Since the Second World War, 97 per cent of the UK’s wild flower-rich grasslands have been wiped out due to modern farming practices and urban development.

Sarah Raven, the writer and television presenter who writes a regular gardening column for The Daily Telegraph, welcomed the plans. She said: “It is right that you should not mow your lawns.
“Daisies and dandelions are key for pollinators because dandelions flower from very early in the year, and then daisies take over and flower to late.
“Gardeners should also introduce crocuses and snow drops into their lawns because they will provide nectar and pollen early in the year when food is scarce. Queen bumblebees often starve in the early spring.”