The green and rolling countryside of Worcestershire, England, is home to the cider apple orchards which surround the gardens of Pear Tree Cottage. They enjoy a sunny south westerly aspect with sweeping views across to Martley Hillside, Woodbury and Abberley clock tower. The Teme Valley lies just over the hill and, not far away, is the Herefordshire border. Although our climate is temperate, our seasons are often uncertain and always a challenge to a gardener! This began in 2010 & follows the weekly ups and downs of garden work chronicling both successes and failures but, above all, demonstrates the fun enjoyed by three people who regularly garden in all weathers


9 January 2021

January Hoar Frosts

Another Saturday and not so much gardening!  Chris had a tree emergency call out - a fallen tree had crashed down and severely damaged a bridge.  We've also been enjoying proper winter weather with a week of hard frosts, some really pretty hoar frosts. I don't feel that we're too behind with season work - so am not too the moment!

Yesterday afternoon our resident Under Gardener was very busy assembling our new Hartley Botanic shelving.  In reality it's more like an etagere.  Unfortunately and, for reasons that I won't go into here, it arrived too late for overwintering greenhouse plants and will wait until spring before its pressed into use.

I did however tidy up quite a few overwintering Pelargoniums and even managed to de- leaf some Hellebores before succumbing to the cold and creeping back indoors!!  

Ginuary Lockdown!


Head Gardener has been absent from the garden whilst exploring the wilds of North Yorkshire over Christmas and arrived back to find herself in another lockdown and tighter restrictions.  When she arrived home the garden was covered in frozen snow!  Even more snow than up on the highest Yorkshire  moors!

However, today, I ventured out to see what I'd missed and lo and behold, the sun came out and I even found buds bursting! A narcissus was blooming and some wild Hellebores are in bloom.  In the greenhouse, the Jasmine is just coming into bloom - I love the way it just fills the entire greenhouse with its heavy fragrance.

This new Blogger interface is as awful as ever & doesn't allow photo placing or text wrapping so please excuse the layout. 

31 December 2020

Farewell 2020

Let's hope 2021 is a brilliant year for all gardeners & garden visitors!!


13 December 2020

Getting Ahead in December

Am trying to keep up to date with posts but am definitely NOT enjoying this new interface which is much more restrictive when it comes to layout and wrapping text around photos.  Hence this post contains too many empty spaces!

However, a much better Saturday this week.  We were relieved to have dry weather and some sunshine which allowed seasonal garden work  to continue apace.  Our 2 year old homemade leaf mould was used to mulch the old Aspen Grove which really should be renamed to the Birch Grove since we removed the ever suckering Aspens and replaced them with Acers and multi-stemmed silver birch.  Chris also mulched the lower border with homemade compost and we lifted and stored the Dahlias.  This year we even labeled them all - that is, all but one which was nameless and had lost its label!
The garden really is looking quite tidy as most of the leaves have fallen and we're really well up to date with jobs.  The ferns display welcome greenery & we have a few Hellebores in bloom which add a little seasonal cheer - especially on a dark wet day like today!

7 December 2020



By Day and By Night!

Bad weather has meant garden work has been delayed so a dry Saturday was welcome despite the sodden ground! As wet and saturated as things were, the lawn edges had a Chris treatment before we turned our attention the Christmas tree and its lighting.  Now I should explain that Chris gave us this little tree a couple of years ago.  Its managed to get going despite competing with thirsty conifer roots but it hasn't put on much top growth yet.  In an effort to bulk it out and make it bigger and thicker, we decorated it with holly, ivy and rose hips.  Round the base, we placed silver birch logs and boughs of conifer.  We then bound it in multi coloured lights.  I'm seriously hoping we don't have any high winds as it will completely wrecked!   

Maybe it looks rather too natural as we wondered if it looked more like a compost heap in daylight!!  It actually looks much more impressive at night.

23 November 2020

Looking Up & Scrolling Down!

Enjoying the autumn colours of both bark and leaves!



Autumn Smugness!

The Lower Border


A sunny warm weekend!!  Time to tidy The Lower Border (such a Ted & Ralph name!!) and cut down dying vegetation on perennials.  Yes!  I know all the frosty pics of hoar on poppy heads look amazing! However the stark reality in a wet and mild season is brown mush with no redeeming features whatsoever.  In this garden birds couldn't be better fed and as for hibernating insects, they have the rest of the garden and outbuildings in which to take shelter! We began by removing all the metal plant supports and Chris strimmed everything off which was then raked up and placed in the compost heap.  He then got to work with the hedge cutter on the various evergreen shrubs and  I weeded through.  Hey ho!  The border is now immaculate and ready to be mulched with compost. It goes to show how a few evergreen shrubs add winter interest!  Without them, it would look bare and empty for the entire season and until the herbaceous plants to re-emerge in spring.