GARDENTALKS’ ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY
At the far end of the orchard a new Gabriel Ash plant house has been erected which really blends into its surroundings perfectly. Under the floor we have excavated a large pit which will act as a heat-store by day and at night the cooler night-time air will be pumped through it, emerging warmer to benefit overnight temperatures. We have two bio electric fan heaters to act as a back-up during colder spells.
My aim is to produce plants for sale in an environmentally friendly way as is economically possible without impacting upon the quality of the finished plant. This is achieved by the following actions:
We have reduced the use of peat by 50% and replaced with composted bark. A bark topdressing is given to all container plants in order to suppress weed and liverwort growth without resorting to chemicals.
All used compost, plant matter, lawn mowings and leaves is composted and then added to the soil when planting open ground plants. We are in the process of constructing a range of new compost bins.
We use a mixture of both organic and inorganic fertilizers plus slow release fertilizers in all potting composts to reduce excess leaching into the environment.
Where possible we try and use recycled flower pots that have been sterilized with environmentally friendly Jet 5.
All timber used in the garden is from sustainable sources and path edgings in the copse are from locally cut timber.
Low energy light bulbs are used where possible, rainwater is used for watering the greenhouse. 9 Solar-pv panels fitted during February 2012 which generate electricity into the national grid.
Due to the proximity of bee hives we use very few insecticides other than Met52 Bioinsecticide for soil incorporation as control for Black Vine Weevil. These materials are totally safe when broken down in the soil. Aphid control is by Chess which is non-poisonous and our weed control is based upon Glyphosphate on open ground beds and pathways which again is totally biodegradable.
In my part-time work as a broadcaster on BBC Radio Lancashire gardening programmes. I advocate natural biological control using wildlife and insects and only very limited use of chemicals for specific problems rather than overall treatment. Gardening Correspondent for ‘The Yorkshire Times’ on-line newspaper. Please see articles under lifestyle section.
Wildlife in the Garden
As the garden borders onto open countryside the area abounds in wildlife of all sorts including many birds from wrens, song thrush to spotted woodpeckers and countless finches and tits, which we regularly feed via nut and seed feeders hanging in the trees. Also frogs and toads, shrews, dragonflies, ladybirds and lacewings as well as ground beetles and centipedes plus bats and swallows at dusk.
Plants to Encourage Wildlife
We grow and stock a number of plants that encourage birds and insects to your garden from nectar rich flowering plants for butterflies to winter-berrying shrubs for our feathered friends. Please ask my advice for choice of suitable plants.
Garden Talks and Lectures
I present a number of titles to various social groups, and recycling plus encouragement of wildlife into your garden is always of paramount importance in these talks.
Encouraging Sustainable Tourism
I believe in helping to preserve the unique and valuable landscape of the Forest of Bowland so that it can provide enjoyment an inspiration to all. To this end we would encourage all visitors to follow the Sustainable Tourism Visitor code and the Countryside code.
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Peter Foley (formerly of Holden Clough Nursery)
Waddow Lodge, Waddington
Clitheroe, Lancashire, BB7 3HQ
Telephone: 01200 429145
Sustainable Tourism Visitor code
1. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
In the Forest of Bowland we take our recycling very seriously, as we hope you do at home! Say no to packaging where possible, especially plastic bags. You will find recycling banks in most main car parks across the area. In Forest of Bowland we work hard to recycle all we can. Please help us by making use of the recycling system in your accommodation, and asking for one if you can't find it.
2. Reduce car traffic: walk, cycle or use public transport
Walking and cycling are great ways to see the area without adding to traffic. Use public transport where possible to travel to your start point, but try exploring near to where you are staying - there are some fantastic places to see right on your doorstep! Ask your accommodation provider for details.
3. Stay Local, Eat Local, Buy Local, See Local
Support local producers and services - this way your visit has a real benefit to the communities of Forest of Bowland. And you get to see and taste the real quality that Forest of Bowland offers. Visit farm shops, village stores, pubs, cafes, garden centres and craft shops. Much of our distinctive culture is evident in the community events which happen throughout the year and are well worth supporting. Support local environmental projects by contributing to the Bowland Tourism and Environment Fund.
4. Chill out - switch off….
Enjoy a fabulous, light touch holiday - switch off lights and dripping taps; use the voluntary laundry card scheme where you see it, so that only towels that really need washing are laundered; every single effort helps protect and enhance our beautiful environment. It takes a moment and it's all worth it!
5. Follow the Countryside Code: respect - protect - enjoy.
The Countryside Code reminds visitors to protect plants and animals; take litter away; leave gates and property as you find them; keep dogs under close control; consider other people and users when visiting the countryside.