Anemone ranunculoides 'Pleniflora'

January 2020

Omphalodes verna

25th Birthday Party

This will be held at the Cart Sheds at Spetchley Park on Friday 5 June from 6pm to 8pm.

Garden Tour to Ireland

Mick is still negotiating with other hotels to try to reduce the price. Deposits will be due on 8 March, with the balance due in early April.

Day out by coach

Stella is organising a day out by coach on Wednesday 8 July to Wollerton Old Hall and Hodnet Hall in Shropshire. More details to follow.


Our accounts go to the auditors next week: Richard reports that our finances are in a healthy state.


Pam would like copy for the spring newsletter by mid- to late-March.

Snowdrop garden opening

Margaret Stone is opening her garden, Brockamin, for a snowdrop day on Sunday 9 February from 11am to 4pm. The address is Old Hills, Callow End, Worcester WR2 4TQ.


Mick has again negotiated a discounted price with BHGS for Melcourt Multipurpose compost at £5 a bag and Melcourt Multipurpose with added John Innes compost which BHGS say is better for seed, at £5.70. Delivery will be by the end of February to Mick's house on the edge of Worcester.

Earlier Announcements

November 2019


Our Secretary, Lyn Maile, is stepping down in March after five years. We must therefore have a new Secretary. The job description is on page 9 of the printed newsletter and on the website. Please give serious consideration to taking on this role. Lyn is very happy to talk to anyone thinking about it and to give help to whoever does take it on.

Garden tour to Ireland

Arrangements are all but finalised for this. We will leave on Wednesday 17 June next year and return on Monday 22 June, visiting 12 gardens while we are in Ireland.

Visit to Colesbourne Park

Stella Sullivan has arranged a visit by coach to Colesbourne Park on Thursday 13 February to see the snowdrops. The cost is £24 which includes the coach, entrance, refreshments and a lunchtime soup and roll. We shall leave Crowle at 10.15 and be back about 2.30. Please see Stella if you want to join us.

Christmas social

Our meeting on 14 December will start with lunch at 1pm, followed by a talk by Julie Ritchie of Hoo House Nursery, 'Winter into Spring', at 2pm. Please bring a plate of food to share at the lunch. The Committee will provide drinks. There will be no plant sales.

October 2019

Possible Snowdrop Day

Stella Sullivan is investigating a visit by coach to Colesbourne on Wednesday 13th February, when the gardens are open to groups. We need 29 in the coach to make this viable, so please let Stella know if you are interested.

Tour to Irish Gardens

Mick is organising a tour of gardens in Dublin and Co. Wicklow for Wednesday 17 to Monday 22 June next year. The first and last days would be travelling by coach and ferry, and we would visit 10 gardens while we're there. An external company is being used for the logistics. More information at later meetings.

July 2019

Garden Visits

The visit on 25 September to Pettifers and Broughton Grange in Oxfordshire will definitely go ahead. If you wish to come please talk to Stella Sullivan.

Stella and Claire Constantine are investigating a visit to gardens near Telford for May next year.

Twenty-fifth Anniversary

It is the group's 25th anniversary next year. To mark this, the committee is looking at potential events: a summer evening at Spetchley Park in early June, hiring a film about Piet Oudulf and his style of gardening and a short tour to Irish gardens. A fourth event, a visit next May to Rob and Diane's garden, has already been arranged.


Pam asked for contributions to the autumn newsletter: the copy date will be towards the end of September.

Denim Baseball Cap

A denim baseball cap was left on the coach after the garden tour. Ann Sheppard has it.

May 2019

Plant sale

This will be at Peopleton Village Hall. It has become the major annual fund-raiser for the group and we appreciate members’ support in donating plants for sale or in buying plants. The sale starts at 2pm. To donate, please bring your plants between 12.15 and 1.30. Full details of the arrangements were spelled out by David Pollitt in our last newsletter. Julia Dale would also appreciate donations of cakes for our visitors. John McGhee will be selling plant supports at the sale.

Malvern Spring Festival

The HPS stand won a silver gilt award for their display on shade, part shade and sun-loving plants. It was organised by a small team from a few local HPS groups who were able to talk to a good number of Festival visitors about the Society. Thank you to all who helped.

Conservation plants

Kathryn is taking orders for the next fortnight for the Society’s conservation plants. If you order by May 28, the plants will be delivered in the autumn. Details of the Conservation Scheme are on the national website.

Evening garden party

This is on Wednesday 22 May from 6.30pm at the home of Ann Sheppard and John Taylor at 1 Church Cottage in Defford WR8 9BJ. Parking is at the village hall about 150 metres from the house but uphill. Before coming to the garden please drop off your plate of food at the hall, where everything will be served after the garden visit.

If you have difficulty walking you can be dropped off near the house. A shuttle service will run to Ann's house from the car park for members on their own who find walking difficult.

For members who can't make it on Wednesday Ann's garden will be open for the NGS scheme on Sunday 26th and Monday 27th May 11- 5pm.

Coffee morning

This will be on June 6 from 11am at Claire Constantine’s garden at Vicars Hill, Leigh WR6 5LA.

Ambassadors Day

We will have made a small profit of about £70 or so once all the expenses have been accounted for. Thanks to everyone for all their hard work at the event.

Day trip

Stella has arranged a coach trip for September, probably the last Thursday, to visit Pettifers in North Oxfordshire and Broughton Grange, also near Banbury, we should be able to eat. The cost will be £33.50 for the coach and garden entrances. Stella is looking for levels of interest.

Beardless Iris Day and Peony Day

The Beardless Iris event is near Hereford on June 1 and the peony day at Birtsmorton Court on June 2. Jill and Alun Whitehead from Aulden Farm whose nursery and garden is part of the Iris Day will be our speakers at our next talk, in early July. That meeting is a social so bring a plate of food to share and a plant to swap.

March 2019

Tea Rota

We still need members to help with tea and bringing cakes. Please contact Julia Dale if you can help.

Parking for May meeting

Due to a football gala, parking at Crowle will be limited to 20 spaces for us, reserved for those unable to walk far. Other members will be using the field opposite the hall.

Garden Tour to Hampshire

A few places are still available. This is a wonderful short holiday if you love plants and gardens. We shall visit 10 gardens. It's fine if you come on your own as it's a good way to get to know people. Details are on our website. If you want to join us, please email Kathryn Elrick Smith. The full balance of the tour is due at the end of March.

April meeting

This will be at Pershore College, for our Ambassadors' Day, an all-day event. 100 tickets have been sold, but some are still available. Details are on our website. Jayne has A5 posters to publicise this futher. Contact Lyn Maile if you wish to come.

Iris Day: 1 June

The British Iris Society is holding an Iris Day on Saturday 1 June at Weobley. There are three speakers: Alun Whitehead, Tim Lowe and Julian Sutton. In the afternoon there will be a visit to Alun and Jill's garden at Auden Farm. The cost is £20, which includes refreshments and lunch.

Ceramic sinks

Jackie Davis has two large ceramic sinks, which are free to collect. If you are interested please contact Mick Dunstan for Jackie's contact details.

January 2019

Head office

Staff are under pressure with annual renewals and seed orders. If you’ve a query about renewing, please use the HPS national website or wait to talk to our treasurer, Richard, on his return next month.

Discount compost

BHGS have repeated their cut-price Melcourt Sylvagrow compost offer. Two kinds of compost are on offer, both peat-free. Multi-purpose compost is £5 a bag and Multi-purpose with John Innes £5.70. BHGS say this is what they can recommend as a seed compost because it is fractionally finer than the standard multi-purpose.

Mick will be taking orders at the February meeting and our bulk delivery should arrive by the end of February. Members pick it up from Mick's home on the outskirts of Worcester, about a mile from Junction 7 of the M5.

Tri-fold diary

This is now available and will also be handed out next month as well. The committee would like to know what members think about its larger size.

Hampshire garden tour

We have 41 bookings for our four June days in Hampshire, so a maximum of only nine places left. Full details are on our website or contact Kathryn Elrick-Smith by email or on 01905 616666 to book a place.

Conservation scheme

Kathryn Elrick-Smith would like feedback on the conservation plants in time for next month’s meeting.

Ambassadors’ Day 13 April

Lyn Maile is selling tickets for this year’s celebrity lecture, to be held at Pershore College on Saturday April 13. We’ve got two great speakers – Val Bourne and Matthew Wilson, both of whom are ambassadors for the Hardy Plant Society. They’ll be speaking on gardening in the 21st century. Peshore Plants, Cotswold Garden Flowers and Brockamin Plants will be selling plants. A fourth plant stall is available if anyone would like to run it. Order forms for John McGhee’s plant supports are also available and on our and the national HPS websites.

Helpers are needed for parts of the day so if anyone would like to help please contact Mick or Stephanie.

Tickets for Worcestershire Group members are £10, £15 for others, and you have the option of ordering a lunch (mixed salad with a vegetarian option for £11) or bringing your own. If a lot of us buy lunch we shall have a reduced rate for the hire of the hall at the college.

More details are on our website.

Committee vacancies

At our AGM in March we shall need three new committee members: Secretary, Publicity Officer and a Members’ Representative. It’s really important to the running of our group that they are filled and Mick is asking everyone to think sparing a little time to help us. Lyn and Jayne are more than happy to explain what’s involved to anyone who might be interested. The Members’ Rep (at the moment Tricia King) does not have a specific job but helps to represent the views of members at committee meetings. Please think about it and contact Mick, Lyn or Jayne if you can offer.

December 2018

Tea rota

Volunteers are needed in the kitchen and to make cakes for next year's meetings. Please contact Julia Dale to help with this.

Garden Tour

So far, 33 members have paid their deposits for the tour to Hampshire next June. Mick encouraged members who are thinking of joining us to make their booking as soon as possible.

Conservation Plants

Kathryn Elrick Smith reminded the growers of conservation plants that the Grower's Reports should be with her before or at our meeting on 9 February.

November 2018


Mick told the meeting that we now have 119 members.

Chris Beardshaw

Chris will be speaking to us on a Thursday afternoon in the future.


This was available at the meeting. It contains the booking form for the garden tour to Hampshire next June for which bookings will be taken on a first come, first served basis. The results of the members' survey is also in the newsletter.

Workshop on hardwood cuttings

This will be held on 30 November at 2pm at Spetchley Park Gardens. If you wish to attend, please contact Mick by 17 November.

Volunteers for coffee mornings

In the survey six members volunteered to hold coffee mornings. Please would these or any other member who is happy to host a coffee morning contact Claire Constantine. The coffee mornings for next year are now arranged, so this would be for 2020.

Membership renewals

Please don't forget to renew your subscription. Our Treasurer, Richard King, would prefer subscriptions to be paid by standing order, but also accepts cheques or cash. If you would like to set up a standing order, but are unsure about doing it, please contact Richard.

Compost and manure

Six hundred pounds' worth of these has been sold.

Plant Heritage

Robin Pearce, who chairs the RHS Herbaceous Committee and is one of our members, will be speaking at the Plant Heritage meeting on Tuesday 13 November on the RHS Award of Garden Merit and RHS plant trials. Coffee and plant sale from 6.45pm, talk begins at 7.15. The location is The Log Cabin, Room 14, Pershore College, WR10 3HP. Visitors £3, Plant Heritage members and students free. Contact Joyce Heathcote on 0121 476 1340.

July 2018

Penstemon Day at Pershore College

The RHS is running a Penstemon Day at Pershore College on 4 August from 9.30 till 3.30. Tickets are £10.

Open Garden at John and Lesley Bryant's

John and Lesley's garden at Stoulton will be open on 22 July from 2.30 to 4.30 in aid of the church there, St Edmunds. Entry is £8.

Plant Sale

This raised just over £1,000. Mick thanked everyone for their efforts.

Malvern Show, May

We need a volunteer to organise and manage the HPS stand, with support from those who have done it before. Please talk to Mick if you think you can do this. A decision is needed by October.


Claire has had nearly 50 completed questionnaires. Would the five members who volunteered to hold coffee mornings or evening parties get in touch with her to discuss this.

Autumn Newsletter

Our Newsletter Editor, Pam Norrington, would like articles for this by the end of September.

Coach Outing, 18 August

The numbers for this are disappoiningly low and we may have to cancel it. The trip will leave Crowle at 9.30 and visit Stockton Bury in the morning. There will then be a stop in Leominster for everyone to find their own lunch. Aulden Farm is the visit for the afternoon. The cost is £22. If anyone would like to go on this, please contact Stella Sullivan.

This outing has now been cancelled.


At members' request, we are thinking of extending this to mushroom compost (approximately £2.75 a bag) and manure (approximately £3).

Help in the kitchen and with cakes

Three volunteers are needed to serve the tea at the September meeting and two cakes are also needed. Please contact Julia Dale if you can help.

April 2018

Coach trip 16 May

Final bookings and money were taken at the meeting.

Coach trip to Herefordshire on Saturday 18 August

Stella Sullivan will start taking bookings for this at the May meeting. We will leave Crowle at 9.30 and visit Stockton Bury in the morning. There will then be a stop in Leominster for everyone to find their own lunch. Aulden Farm is the visit for the afternoon.

Visits to Croome Park: Eleanor Coade and Coade Stone

One of our members, Christine Dodd, is a garden tour leader at Croome Park and has offered to lead two personal 'Coade Stone Tours' for HPS Worcestershire members. The tours will be at 2pm on Friday 20 April and 2pm on Monday 4 June. Ruth Guest has a list for people who want to join a tour. Christine has written an article about Mrs Coade and her stone in the spring Newsletter.


Please return these by the May meeting.

Malvern Spring Festival

The plants have been chosen and Mick Dunstan and Jude Templeton have spent some time repotting them. We will be using some pots from Whichford Pottery to give a Gothic feel to the stand. A new volunteers schedule will be sent out later this month.

Plant Heritage Penstemon Day

This is on 4 August at Pershore College. Richard King has tickets.

Group Plant Sale

Please take some flyers to distribute where you live.


Volunteers are needed for cakes for the May meeting and the Plant Sale. Please contact Julia Dale if you can help.

NGS Open Garden

Members Ann Sheppard and John Taylor are opening their garden in Defford on 27 and 28 May for the NGS scheme. More information on the NGS website.

March 2018


Forms are being handed out at our meetings in March and April to find out what members think about our group and whether changes are needed. Claire Constantine will collate the responses and the results will be available later in the year.

Coach trip

This will take place on Wednesday, May 16 to High Glanau Manor, near Monmouth, and Abbey Dore Court, near Hereford, which is eight acres with peonies, ferns, astrantias and bamboos and a nursery. The day will be from 9am to 5pm.


This year 121 bags were ordered, with a few bags still to be picked up.

Seed workshop

February's went well with very positive comments from those, about 20, who attended. The next workshop has been arranged for May 18, 2018 at the same time, 2 - 4pm at Pershore College. This time, the subject is softwood cuttings. If you're interested please give your name to Mick at the next meeting. After the seed workshop in February, someone sent Duncan Coombs, our lecturer, a bottle of wine and a bunch of grapes to thank him for his efforts, a typically generous Hardy Plant Society gesture. Mick thanked this member.

Malvern Spring Festival

Thirty volunteers have come forward. We have had a bit of a set-back with the finances for the stand but the committee has agreed to fund the shortfall and to hold good raffles this year at events to try to recover that expenditure.

New Committee

The AGM elected a full committee. The 2018 committee members are:

ChairMick Dunstan
SecretaryLyn Maile
TreasurerRichard King
Speaker SecretaryStephanie Reader
Publicity SecretaryJayne Savage
Newsletter EditorPam Norrington
Members’ RepsTricia King and Judy Templeton

February 2018

Malvern Flower Show 10 -13 May

We have a design based on the hardiness of plants in the UK which also meets the RHS requirement to reflect the Great Exhibition of 1851. Nicola Content and her daughter Emma have been working hard finding out about plants introduced round the time of the Great Exhibition. The design features a Wardian case, which Emma has been able to source free of charge. Kathryn Elrick-Smith has agreed to help organise the stand. We’ve put in for an increased budget from the national society, to be submitted by February 17, and the entry form for the stand has to be in by 16 February.

We need a total of about 40 people to volunteer for a 90-minute session each, or possibly two sessions, on the stand. We’ll need about 12 people a day. Volunteers receive a free day pass. There will be information about the stand beforehand and details on the stand for queries about the plants or the exhibits and how to sign up new members. We do need a first-aider for the two construction days: this is urgent, so please let Mick know if you have an up-to-date certificate. Mick is taking names up to and at the March meeting – even if you’ve already said you will help, please tell him again.


Our next one is due out in time for our April meeting. So, Mick needs contributions by the middle of March. He already has some content, but perhaps some of our newer members could tell us about their own gardens, why they joined us and what they want to achieve in them now they’re members of the Hardy Plant Society. Please email your contributions to Mick


Last month several people came up to talk to Mick about the newsletter, for which many thanks. But our catering team of Julia Dale with Andrea Boulton as her deputy needs a third person to help in the kitchen every month. And every month, we need people to bake or buy a cake. The same few people are doing all the work so please think about helping. Stella Sullivan is also looking for a deputy to help her arrange our garden coach trips. If you would like to help, please see Stella. The workload isn’t enormous.

AGM 10 March

We shall start at 1.30pm. The hall should be open from about 12.30.

National AGM and Annual Lecture Day

The AGM/ALD of national society is on March 24 in Tiverton. Kathryn and Mick are going so if you’d like a lift with them, let Mick know.

Seed sowing session

Friday 16 February at Pershore College: those who are going should meet there just before 2pm.

Survey forms

At next month’s meeting the Committee will be handing out survey forms to find out what members think about the group and how things might be improved.

Coach trip 16 May

At next month’s meeting Stella Sullivan will be taking names for the first of this year’s coach trips, to High Glanau Garden and to Abbey Dore. It will cost £25 a head: we’ll leave around 9am and be back by 5.30pm.

January 2018


Hilda Watts had reported from Alcester that there had been 120mm of rain in December, but July was the wettest month of 2018. The last three years have been very dry compared with the last 18 years.

Committee members needed!

At our AGM in March we shall need a Newsletter Editor and a second Member's Representative to bring the Committee back up to its full strength of eight, so that the variety and number of Group activities can continue. Please talk to Mick if you would be prepared to take on either of these roles.


We have plenty of orders for the Group discounted order of compost (see November Notices); last orders will be taken at the February meeting. The orders will be delivered to Mick's garage on the edge of Worcester mid-late February.

Garden opening 11 February

Margaret Stone is opening her garden, Brockamin, for the NGS on Sunday 11 February, 11am-4pm, for her collection of snowdrops and other early-flowering bulbs. (Ed. note: You can read about Margaret's garden month by month in her blog 'Last Month in My Garden' on the national HPS website

Practical gardening sessions at Pershore College

There are some places left for the first of these sessions, which are free to members, which is on sowing seed. It's from 2 till 4pm on Friday 16 February, led by Duncan Coombs. Materials are provided and you can take home the sown containers for use in your own garden. If this session is successful others are planned for May and October on softwood and semi-ripe cuttings. Those coming need to meet at the College Reception just before 2pm.

Day coach trip, 16 May

Stella Sullivan is arranging a day by coach to visit High Glanau Manor, Monmouthshire and Abbey Dore Court Garden, Hereford on Wednesday 16 May. The health of Group funds means that the Committee has decided to subsidise the cost of the coach. More details available soon.

Garden Tour 2019

A tour is being planned to visit the gardens of Hampshire in mid-June next year. Rooms have been reserved for three nights at a hotel near Southampton.


Subscriptions are now due: we have 115 members, of whom only 14 have not yet paid.


Articles for the spring edition are needed at latest by the end of March. Mick asked for help in preparing the newsletter ready for layout and printing.


The Committee's survey to gain information from members about the Group and its activities will be available next month.

Defibrillator training

Five members have offered to be trained to use the hall's defibrillator. If anyone else would be prepared to do this, please contact Lyn Maile.

Malvern Spring Festival, 10-13 May

The entry forms have been received and the design for our stand has been started; Cotswold Garden Flowers will provide plants and Whichford Pottery will also be working with us. Mick will ask next month for volunteers to work on the stand during the show.

News of ex-member

Wendy Martin, who was a member of our Group for many years, reports that she and Peter are settling in to their new house and garden in Somerset. A landscape designer is coming soon to make the garden more friendly for Peter and her greenhouse is arriving next week.