The Sunday Telegraph - Sunday - - Gardening -

Will your Ju­bilee cel­e­bra­tions be a one-day stand or some­thing more last­ing? We will all re­tain poignant mem­o­ries of the great day, but it will be more spe­cial if we can plant or cre­ate some­thing for fu­ture gen­er­a­tions to en­joy and that gives plea­sure, just as the Queen has done for the past 60 years. If dec­o­rat­ing your gar­den for a party, push the boat out. You don’t have to spend lots of money, but sim­ply cre­ate em­bel­lish­ments that can hope­fully be used again dur­ing sum­mer. To get some in­spi­ra­tion, I spoke to Debs Good­e­nough, head gar­dener at the Prince of Wales’s or­ganic gar­den at High­grove for the past four years, and be­fore that, head gar­dener at Os­borne House (Queen Vic­to­ria’s Isle of Wight re­treat). She re­calls that at Os­borne House they used to make tri­umphal arches to cel­e­brate spe­cial oc­ca­sions: such arches are a long-stand­ing tra­di­tion – they were used for Queen Vic­to­ria’s Di­a­mond Ju­bilee in 1897. They are usu­ally made from a light wooden frame­work that is com­pletely cov­ered with ev­er­greens (the gar­den­ers at Bal­moral use heather), flow­ers and flags. Of­ten, suit­able word­ing is added. “Sixty Glo­ri­ous Years” would suit Di­a­mond Ju­bilee arches, for in­stance. A sim­ple, rus­tic ver­sion could be made in smaller gar­dens, us­ing birch twigs, hazel or wil­low wands, or trel­lis: any­thing that can be wo­ven, pinned or tied to­gether, and then stud­ded with flags and flow­ers, cut or in con­tain­ers. Pro­vid­ing cover is cru­cial, es­pe­cially if you are invit­ing more peo­ple than can fit into your house dur­ing a sud­den down­pour. You don’t want guests wet and suf­fer­ing. Whether you go down the fes­ti­val route and get a large tar­pau­lin to sling be­tween trees, get a pop-up tent or two, or buy/hire a mar­quee, “glam” them all up with flow­er­ing arches. If you can run to it, buy three or four me­tal arches (from your lo­cal black­smith), two me­tres or so high, that are wide enough to fit over a tres­tle ta­ble and benches, fit them in a line, sling a wa­ter­proof cover over the top and Flow­ers for Her Majesty: from top, red pe­onies; ‘Royal Ju­bilee’; white ap­ple tree Red Wind­sor; and blue ‘Shikoo’ see the sta­mens. No doubt at Chelsea, there will be many stun­ning in­tro­duc­tions named for the Ju­bilee. Debs is go­ing to plant a Red Wind­sor ap­ple tree in her gar­den: “This is a sport [a freak ge­netic oc­cur­rence] which arose in Here­ford in 1985 with Cox’s Orange Pip­pin parent­age – tasty and dis­ease re­sis­tant. Also grown at a Bri­tish nurs­ery.” Make a com­mem­o­ra­tive plaque, so later gen­er­a­tions will know the his­tory of the plant. Make your own or have en­thu­si­as­tic young rel­a­tives paint one. As for cut flow­ers, Debs sug­gests pe­onies, Philadel­phus, or Cean­othus: “Any­thing that is home­grown, is look­ing good and sports the colours.” Up the road from me, at Burgh­ley House near Stam­ford, the head gar­dener, John Bur­rows, is grow­ing and plan­ning dec­o­ra­tions for the 10,000 peo­ple com­ing to cel­e­brate on 13 June along with their guest of hon­our, the Queen. John is us­ing slices of home­grown oak branches about 15cm in di­am­e­ter and 10cm deep, as ta­ble dec­o­ra­tions. He is chis­elling out a hole in the cen­tre to take a hid­den vase, which he will fill with roses, al­chemil­las, eu­phor­bias and what­ever looks vi­brant in the gar­dens on the day. Es­tate car­pen­ters have carved two beau­ti­ful wooden spades and the Queen and the Duke of Ed­in­burgh will plant two trees with them: a large-leaved lime and an Ori­en­tal plane. So what is Debs go­ing to be do­ing dur­ing the Ju­bilee cel­e­bra­tions? “I will be some­times with friends and fam­ily, but also at High­grove with the peo­ple I work for, to make it a very spe­cial time for them – it couldn’t be bet­ter than that.” Life readers can save 10 per cent when you buy roses (con­tainer­ised, bare root or bou­quets) by mail or­der from David Austin Roses. Quote DTSP to qual­ify. Or­der on­line at davi­daustin­, call 01902 376300 or write to David Austin Roses, Bowl­ing Green Lane, Al­brighton, Wolver­hamp­ton WV7 3Hb.of­fer valid un­til 31 July. 2012 Royal Ju­bilee roses can be ad­vance or­dered for despatch from Novem­ber 2012 on­wards. Each rose is £17.50, or three for £46.50, plus £5.95 p & p. Roses will be sup­plied as bare roots.

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