Monday 27 April 2015

Garden Open Day, Saturday 9th May 2015: zero inflation at Weathervane House

Come to Seaton Ross in Sunny East Yorkshire!

If any of my posts have any credibility they bear the hand of Peter Williams who lives down in the village. 
Peter and Julie Williams did not open their garden last year so now is your chance to see their garden again. If you have never been before you will be amazed and enchanted!

Peter tells me that the entrance ticket is £3 the same as his first opening five years ago. Please note his opening is on a SATURDAY - which is less usual for the Open Garden Scheme. The time is eleven until four.
Apart from  Weathervane House being one of the best gardens in Yorkshire, Julie is renowned for her wonderful cakes. 
I am used to extolling Brenda’s culinary virtues  when my own garden is open. Peter tells me that at one of his recent lectures he was told how fantastic Brenda’s teas were. They were very sorry but they had no memory whatsoever of my garden! Julie has more competition - their garden is unforgettable!

Seaton Ross is one of very few places in the York region to have acid soil. Peter grows  wonderful rhododendrons, azaleas and magnolias and very much more. Just come and look at and feel his wonderful soil. I have hitherto regarded the soil that we share as a very fine sand. Peter is a soil scientist and insists it’s a coarse silt! I have recently conceded to his superior knowledge.
In my defence he had published last week this fine article about rhododendrons in the journal of the Hardy Plant Society - which I recommend that you join. At the end of the article is a quote from the map of East Yorkshire. It characterises our local  soil as ‘very wet acid sand of low fertility’. His plants don’t agree

If you meet a talkative friendly diminutive Welshman as you walk round it will be Peter. Make yourself known. If anything pleases him more than talking about his garden it is explaining the science of how plants grow.

I am not sure how much of Peter’s five acres is open. Most of it will be and there is so much to see. Allow yourself plenty of time. Allow a little more time and walk round our lovely village. The village plot down the road will be blue with forget-me-nots!

2014 and 2015 pictures

Peter grafted most of his trees

Fingers crossed the rhododendrons will be looking like this  

Cornus florida is a beautiful shrub

Corylopsis sinensis will have gone over

Walk the grass paths and enjoy the ground cover that grows in the cool understory of fine shrubs

No doves in the dovecot.

Many bulbs are planted in drifts
Star wars will be over 

It’s always distressing to a garden owner that his best plants are finished by Open Day. But what joy when something overlooked makes a fantastic display!

There are sure to be plenty of cut leaf maples in the plant sale. They are one of the garden’s signatures

All the plants in the plant sale are grown to the best professional quality but are considerably cheaper. The large polythene tunnel is very useful if it rains

Whoops, I showed Julie’s cakes last year. They will be just as good this time! Indeed they are so famous the NGS link shows them too!

Advance information on another garden event

Seaton Ross gardens will be open on 7th of June. I will be giving it blatant publicity soon. 


  1. It looks really attractive (the quality of the photos must help - some are spectacular).
    Roger, how can you explain that an area is acidic in an alkaline region. I am just curious how these things happen.

  2. You are excused none attendance on grounds of distance Alain!
    It is not unusual for such variations of pH. There are places in Yorkshire where acid sphagnum peat soil overlies limestone rock for example.
    Here in the York area there has been a fair amount of glacial deposition where the main mineral is limestone.
    In my specific case the soil is described as an alluvial deposit from the ancient river Derwent as it meandered over our very few local square miles over the last few thousand years The fine sand - er silt according to Peter - is made of silica and such materials tend to be acid. In our case the deep sand overlies clay between three and six foot down.
    I have just returned from Bolton Percy where the soil is alkaline!

  3. I think Martyn has this earmarked for a train outing and I daren't demur.

  4. Come on 7th June and see both gardens! but bloggers like you Sue can come anytime to my own garden. Actually although Peter has a fantastic spring garden his summer herbaceous border is superb.

  5. Yes, I am amazed. I love the dovecote and the drifts of bulbs. The grafted tree is gorgeous and those cakes look yummy.

    1. I think it is many years since Peter actually had doves. I must remember to ask him how much it is used by birds now. I know Peter and Julie love them

  6. Big regret I can't make this but my mother's 90th birthday takes precedence, I did comment on a recent post that I thought you weren't participating this year, is this correct Roger?

    1. Sorry you won't be there Rick. Hope your mum has a happy day. She will need your help to blow out the candles.
      Had you made it to Peter's garden you could have popped up the road to see mine as could any blogging friends
      No I am not opening for NGS this year, but the trailed Seaton Ross Open Gardens on June 7 includes both Peter and myself


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