Spring 2017

We have had two very successful Garden Days this year already: ) We have planted some lovely new things in both Gardens, cleared and created some beautiful areas and refreshed BOTH Gardens wonderfully – all thanks to our fantastic volunteers!
In Duncan Terrace Gardens we have created a newly planted area with Bergenias [Bergenia Bressingham Ruby] the leaves will turn red in winter – just by the Colebrooke Row mid-gate; down by the City Rd we have planted more Salvia [S. nemorosa Caradonna] and at the turning bay, we have added many more Camelia and some tender loving care! We have added white and blue wood anenomes [Anenome Blanda Blue and White Spleandour ] to the Woodland Garden, which will naturalise over time, planted three shrubs of winter-flowering, scented jasmin [Lonicera fragrantissima], revealed the ferns in the Wideford Road bed and done lots of weeding. Up at the Duncan Street end, we have planted more of the wonderfully extravegant Fritillaria Imperialis, added some lovely white Muscari Armeniacum Siberian Tiger [again, which should naturalise…] Ā and some blue agapanthus – which should be flowering later in the year.
Over in Colebrooke Row Gardens…. In the Herb bed, we have added some more lavender, another Nandina Domestica, put in more of the lovely soft grey “rabbits ears” [Stachys byzantina Silver Carpet] and added a few Iberis sempivirens [pretty white low-growing ground cover, which will establish itself over time]; we have planted more daffodil bulbs at both ends of the Garden, plus some special snow drops, lovely yellow-flowering winter aconites and ivies at the northern entrance.
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Many, many thanks to all our volunteers and look forward to seeing you in the Gardens!
Some pictures will be added soon….

New Arrivals

February 10, 2016

Plants to look out for in the Gardens at the moment are the yellow early-flowering Winter aconites (Eranthis hyemalis) in the central Broadwalk bed;

Winter Aconites

the Gravetye Giants that look like giant white snowdrops in the beds at the edge of the Woodland Garden;

Gravetye Giants

the white and purple flowers of Hellebore Orientalis, dotted throughout the open woodland beds;


the two yellow-flowering Edgworthia Chrysantha near the mid-gates on the Colebrooke Row side;

Edgworthia Chrysantha

the scattered snowdrops (Galanthus nivalis); and the slowly emerging daffodils.

A Working Winter

Winter 2015 was a busy time in both the Gardens!Ā  At the last gardening day of 2015, we planted drifts of daffodils in Duncan Terrace Gardens and then in December, we learnt that our application to the London Metropolitan Gardens Association for Spring bulbs had been successful: ) So with the help of City University volunteers and the Greenspace team led by Andrew Hillier, we planted hundreds more bulbs in Duncan Terrace Gardens – tulips, muscari and more daffodils. We must wait to see which of those come up this year, but if not, no doubt we will see them next year!

The Greenspace team have once again treated the lawn using a mechanical scarifier. This acts as a mechanical rake, efficiently removing all the unwanted moss and thatch from the turf, and increasing the amount of oxygen and water that can reach the soil. They then re-seeded the grass. They have fenced off the area to give it its best chance over the winter months and certainly, the rain over the last weeks will have done much to help regenerate the lawn.

In the Colebrooke Row Gardens, we planted another nine roses – Rosa Susan Daniels

susan-daniel rose

and cut back the herbaceous planting. Right now, there are many shoots of Spring bulbsĀ to be seenĀ breaking through, courtesy of last year’s bulb planting days!

Pieces of Silver

You may also have noticed we have a new small copse of Silver Birch down near the City Road end – these are three different species for extended interest throughout the year, each has a different bark, form and habit:

  • Betula albosinensis – Chinese birch: orange bark peeling to pink & then to white, 10cm catkins


  • Betula papyrifera – paper-bark birch:brown/red bark until 20-25cm diameter, then white

paper birch

  • B. pendula – Dalecarlica Swedish birch: White-peeling bark with deeply cut leaves.



Next Gardening Day

Our next Gardening Day is the 20th February – a week today: ). As we prune, collect the leaves to feed the soil and reveal next year’s growth, and gather the fallen debris, we will need to keep our eyes peeled to make sure we don’t step onĀ any of thoseĀ emerging bulbs or herbaceous plants!

Look forward to seeing you there: )

Saturday, November 21

A great day in the Gardens on Saturday, thank you so much to everyone who was able to join us, we had twenty+ volunteers throughout the course of the day: )

In Duncan Terrace Gardens we planted 500 bulbs – baby narcissi in the Broadwalk Triangle, which we will be able to enjoy in the early months of Spring 2016.


Our plan is to add in some more Anenome Honorine Jobert over the coming weeks so that we have their beautiful white flowers to cheer us up next Autumn when much of the colour in the Gardens is over.

anenome HJ

We also cleared and cut back lots of the Woodland Garden borders and planted some pretty purple Heuchera to compliment the new Acer put in earlier in the Autumn – down just past the turning bay where the Gardens widen at the City Road end – Colebrooke Row side….

Heuchera purple

In Colebrooke Row Gardens we cut back the herb bed & prepared the long border for the addition of Ā some beautiful roses which will hopefully go in over the next week. More on this later! If you walk through you will see that some roses are flowering right now!

susan-daniel rose

More news anon….

Gardening Day, Saturday, September 26

We made a big impact on this beautiful sunny day – planting lots of new plants paid for by the money we raised at the Summer Garden Party. Many thanks again to Cluttons for so generously supporting that event! There are some, (but not enough!) wonderful new photographs on the website, particularly one of our new acer, taken by Thomas Sables, a fantastic photographer and friend of the Gardening Group.

Down by the City Road we now have a beautiful small purple Acer Japonicum ‘Aconitifolium’ tree, some Loropetalum Chinese Black Pearl shrubs which have pretty pink flowers that contrast well with the purple stems and leaves. These are Autumn flowering shrubs so will cheer up the months when little else flowers. We also planted a purple phormium [Phormium tenax ‘Atropurpureum’], a second giant Astelia; a dozen purple-flowering Salvia nemorosa ‘Caradonna’ another late-summer/Autumn flowerer that goes nicely with the pinks, purples and reds at this end of the Garden. We have also created a “nursery” around an Agave [a Century Plant] given to us by Kevin. We are hoping some of these may survive the winter.

At the edge of the Woodland Garden, opposite Wideford House on the Colebrooke Row side, we have planted two Edgworthia Chrysantha, look out for the flowers later this winter as they bloom on the bare stems of this elegant shrub! Over the course of early 2016, we will be adding further planting to this area.

In the central triangle of the Broadwalk, Ā we have planted someĀ Anenome Honorine Jaubert – we are hoping to plant more of these over the coming weeks, as their beautiful white flowers brighten up dark Autumn corners: ). We have also planted a new variety of a fine-leaved, thornless mahonia here too, Mahonia Soft Caress to go with the existing Mahonia; these survive well in the dense shade of this part of the Gardens. More planting is planned for 2016.

In the borders up by the lawn at Duncan StreetĀ we have planted threeĀ purple-flowering hebes that will grow into good-sized shrubs over the coming years, again, providing the Gardens with early Autumn colour.

Thanks to everyone who came, including our students from City University and thanks too for the lovely notes, emails and messages from those who couldnā€™t make it,

See you next Saturday, November 21, any time between 10.00 and 3.00 pm. We will be concentrating on Colebrooke Row Gardens, preparing the beds to plant some roses and preparing the City Road end of the Gardens for Winter.


July 2 Summer Garden Party!

A few pictures from our wonderful day on Saturday. More to follow as they come through!

Garden Party Plant Stall

Courtesy of Cluttons, we feasted on delicious eats and drank a wonderful fruit concoction,Ā played some fun summer games and our children went home with bright blue party bags! Many thanks to everyone at Cluttons, but especially Katie, who did so much to make it all happen.

Garden Party Cake Stall

Thanks too to Martin Klute, St Peter’s Ward Councillor, and to Bunhill Councillor and lead for the Environment at the Council, Claudia Webbe for giving up their afternoons to be with us. Both Councillors were hugely impressed with the difference we are making in the Gardens and with our partnership approach to keeping the Gardens looking lovely for everyone to enjoy. Claudia Webbe has committed to helping us sort out a solution for the grassed area in Duncan Terrace Gardens, so we hope to see some progress on that over the late Autumn-Winter months.

Garden Party Book stall

It was great to be able to welcome Ben Robinson, the newly-appointed community volunteering coordinator at City University. Ben has already given up his time to help us personally in the Gardens, as well as organising a stream of wonderful student volunteers.

Garden Party Card stall

A huge thank you again to everyone who so generously gave their help on the day, to those who worked behind the scenes beforehand, and to those who came and really made the afternoon such a success.Ā Final thanks to all our wonderful volunteers and Greenspace who support the Gardens throughout the year. Ā We will let you know over the next few days what we raised to go towards planting in the two Gardens.

June 24

We had our first evening session earlier this month which was a great success – a good turnout and plenty of jobs done. Thanks to everyone for their help: )

Below are some of the newly-gifted plants which we have placed in both Colebrooke Row Gardens and Duncan Terrace Gardens. Many thanks to everyone who has helped water them over the last few weeks to give them the best chance of surviving – most of them have made it. Many thanks to Anneke and Simon who donated the plants: )


Our next exciting event is the Summer Party – Ā this Saturday, June 27, 2- 5pm.


We are really looking forward to seeing everyone there! Ā There will be loads of lovely sandwiches, drinks and cakes and outdoor games, all courtesy of Clutttons who have sponsored the event for us. In addition, we will be selling plants and homemade cakes, cards & art; plus we will have our Ā Greenspace & Community Gardening Group table.


A big thank you to Cluttons for so generously making the party possible, to City University for their endless stream of wonderful volunteers throughout the year, to the London Metropolitan Gardeners Association for giving us so many bulbs to brighten up our Spring, to the Duncan Terrace AssociationĀ for all its unending support and to all the wonderful local volunteers who have given up their time this year to water, weed, plant or donate funds or plants.

Some of our newly gifted plants, thanks Anneke & Simon!

Finally, a huge thanks to Andrew Hillier our Community Park Ranger and to Dave Bamford and all the team at Greenspace….


May 23 – Welcome to Duncan Terrace & Colebrooke Row Gardens online!

I hope you are enjoying the Spring gardens!


It has been an exciting month. We had a great Community Gardening Day on the 15th and did lots of work in both Colebrooke Row and Duncan Terrace Gardens. Last week we were lucky enough to be given almost thirty herbaceous perennials, mature shrubs and climbers by a local resident. The majority of these were planted over the Bank Holiday weekend and many thanks to everyone who has been helping keep those plants watered – they are doing very well!


Our first Community Gardening evening takes place on Thursday, June 11th, six – eight pm. If you can make it, it will be lovely to see you. If not, we look forward to catching up at our Summer Garden Party on Saturday, 27th June – 2pm – 5pm.

Here are some pictures if you have not been able to get into the Gardens and enjoy the Spring blossom: )