‘Honey I drugged the bees’

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‘Honey I drugged the bees’

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‘Honey I drugged the bees’

Gibside market square slip bedsbyHistoric gardens Trainee


The client brief

A border the entire length of the slip bed by the Potting Shed Café to reflect the period of the time if possible, to be educational but more importantly to be full of colour during the main summer period from late June until end of September a budget of £700 has been allowed for this project.


Key elements

EducationalBe full of colour June until end of September A budget of £700



Bees and butterflies – conservation minded, these plants will provide a show of colour. Educational interest.Medicinal – Educational, fun and the majority of Medicinal plants are great for pollinators.


SMART objectives

1. To create a preliminary planting design to include autumn planting of the slip beds by 8th August 2014.

2. To remove unwanted plants from the slip beds (leaving enough, so that the beds do not look empty) as specified in the planting design by 24th October 2014.

3. To move the existing plants that are to be kept in the slip beds as specified by the planting plan by 24th October 2014.

4. To carry out the soil improvement as specified in the planting design by 24th October 2014.

5. To carry out the autumn planting, including bulbs (on list A) and as specified by the planting design by 24th October 2014.

6. To carry out external and greenhouse seed sowing as specified by the planting design by March 30th 2015.

7. To carry out top dressing of choice plants and remaining perennial planting as specified in the planting design by 24th April


8. Handover 30




Bees and butterflies

Identify and source plants that are good for bees & butterflies

Look at flowering times and provide some colour outside of the specified period

Create a plan for the 2 bee and butterfly beds

Order, move or sow chosen plants

Plant out



Identify and source

medicinal plants & research properties, history & myth

Look at flowering times and provide some colour outside of the specified period

Create a plan for the 2

medicinal beds

Order, move or sow chosen


Grow spare plants in case of losses or slow germination (seeds)

Plant out


What will it look like?

• Colourful

• Interesting/Educational

• Good for bees and butterflies

• Medicinal

• In keeping with the properties history (pre 1874 planting)

• Will create a pleasing area within the market square


How am I bringing in a new audience?

Current main visitor groups – Curious minds and Explorer families


The project is part of the market square redevelopment which offers a farmers market, butchery, bakery, pub, café. This will bring new visitors.

Those who visit just for the market square will be encouraged to revisit and explore the garden offer.


Work in progress


Expected Problems?

Sourcing medicinal plants

Germination temperature/growth speed

Greenhouse pests

Hardening off



What did we get?


How was it innovative?


to have themed beds in the garden.


the bee and butterfly beds and medicinal beds will allow for interpretation, engagement and education.


How could you improve it and what did I learn?

The beds would have had more impact if I could have purchased plants in the spring.

I learned the advantages of a good NT plant supplier in comparison to a garden centre.

I learned to stand back and say to myself

‘you did good girl’.


Pics of finished project



May 2015




my legacy

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