Stone Chrysanthemum and Dahlia Society

Incorporating The Garden Club


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September’s activities

We had a wonderful, informative and inspirational talk from Jack Willgoss of Wildegoose Nursery earlier in the month encouraging us to ‘think tall’ and go ‘higher and higher’ in our planting. Illustrated by many slides from their walled garden in Millichope Park’s former kitchen garden Jack took us through the seasons showing how taller plants can enhance our experience as we immerse ourselves in the planting. Several trays of plants were offered for sale and those trays were virtually empty by the end of the meeting – bags full of lofty grasses, asters, and Sanguisorba’s were seen bobbing home through the town.

The walled garden also featured in Gardener’s World on September 16th as Carol Klein explored the planting – worth trying to find on the BBC catch-up.

We then had a trip to Ashwood Nursery and John’s Garden a few days later and you can see some photos from that on our Photo Gallery page.

Our next evening meeting is on Thursday October 13th with a talk from Richard Gulliver on The Botanist Islay Dry Gin.


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September

Welcome to Autumn and let’s hope it brings some much-needed rain for our poor parched gardens. Our first meeting after the summer is on Thursday September 8th at 7.30pm at the Christ Church Centre. We will welcome Wildegoose Nursery with a talk entitled Going Higher and Higher on using tall perennials to create an immersive atmosphere in the garden as they go through some of their favourite tall and even taller perennials and grasses and how they like to use them at Wildegoose.

If you have booked a place on our trip to Ashwoods Nursery and John’s Garden you should have received an email telling you the details for catching the bus and what to do about that all-important lunch. As a reminder – the trip is the following Thursday on September 15th.

In October we have a talk on the Botanist Islay Dry Gin given by Dr Richard Ward – details on our Programme page.


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August garden visits

We have no meeting in August but there are plenty of gardens to visit both near and far – there are 12 NGS gardens listed for Staffordshire and Shropshire in the Yellow Book, or download their app onto your smart phone for holiday visits.

We have been invited to visit “Tilling Drive Allotments” on Sunday 14th August between 1pm & 3pm, this will give you the opportunity to discover one of Stone’s hidden gems and see what is involved in being a plot holder. This is the same day as the plot holders have a Flower & Vegetable Show.  Tilling Drive is off the Eccleshall Road, Stone – no postcode but you can use “what3words” to find the allotments and they are :- binders.great.player

At the end of the month at the Dorothy Clive Garden, Willoughbridge, there is a Plant Hunter’s Fairs on Sunday August 28 & Monday 29 – tickets are bookable.

You can find more links for gardens to visit on our ‘Links’ page and it would be wonderful if you could send us your photos to put on the website. Our Yorkshire holiday photos are on the Photo Gallery page.

Our next meeting is in September when we have a talk from Wildgoose Nursery on using tall perennials to create an immersive atmosphere in the garden. We also have a trip to Ashwoods Nursery and John’s Garden on Thursday 15th September and there are still a couple of tickets left – contact Helen if you want to snap them up.


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Yorkshire Holiday

At the end of June members of the Garden Club joined with members of the Hardy Plant Society for a holiday to Yorkshire to visit gardens and nurseries.

We are reliably informed that about 30 people went on the coach and came back with over 300 plants between them! Roy Alexander, a Hardy Plant Society member, took lots of photos and they have been (severely) edited down to these few for our report. We hope to have a slide show of many more of his photos one evening.

York Gate Garden also in Leeds 

Burnby Hall – home to a National Collection of over eighty varieties of Hardy Water Lilies

Opportunities for plant buying were plentiful, including at Daleside Nurseries

Breezy Knees Gardens and Nursery – 20 acres of gardens and specialist perennials nursery

and Stillingfleet Lodge Garden and Plant Nursery near York

Finally, on the way home, the group visited Don Whitton’s Firvale Allotments displaying many herbaceous perennials including the National Collection of Euphorbias, and where there was another opportunity to acquire a few more plants.

Our next meeting is in September, but before then we hope to bring you some more ideas (and photos) for gardens and places to visit during August.


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July

Our talk this month is Banquet for Bees and Butterflies given by Jane Allison of Mayfield Plants. The meeting is on July 14th at Christ Church Centre, Christ Church Way ST15 8ZB at will start at 7.30pm. Cost is £1.50 (including refreshments) and is open to all. Jane will be bringing plants to sell so our usual sales table will not be open. However – bring your purse / wallet / plenty of cash as Jane’s plants are wonderful!

Mayfield Plants is a private cottage garden nursery selling plants through Plant Hunters Fairs. All the plants grown are rich in pollen and nectar to encourage bees and butterflies into the herbaceous borders. Jane is also a garden designer.


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June events

We had a really fascinating talk on Thursday June 9th from Mike King about Sarracenias and carnivorous plants in general. A lot of members bought plants at the end of the evening from the fabulous display Mike had brought with him. There are more photos in the Photo Gallery.

Monday June 13th saw a coach full of happy gardeners on a trip to RHS Bridgewater. There was lots to see (and buy!) and we had a guided tour as well. These are just a couple of photos from the day – there will be more appearing on the Photo Gallery page over the next week or so.

This weekend sees the return of the Eccleshall in Bloom Open Gardens –

There are several other local gardens open in the next few weeks under the NGS scheme as well – check on the website or your ‘yellow book’.

Finally – our next meeting is on Thursday July 14th when Jane Allison from Mayfield Plants will give a talk entitled Banquet for Bees and Butterflies. Further details nearer the time.


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June

Our next evening meeting is June 9th when Mike King of Shropshire Sarracenias is coming to talk about his passion for those plants. There is more information on our Programme page. This photo below was taken some years ago at Glasgow Botanic Gardens and shows a few Sarracenias, and the mosses they were growing in.

We had a wonderful talk from Diane Clement about a Garden for all Seasons on May 12th and Mike King’s talk promises to be an equally fascinating evening – don’t miss it.

There are still plenty of other things to do in May before then – lots of gardens to visit locally are advertised in the ‘Yellow Book’ or look online at the NGS and download the app to take it with you on holiday. Look at our Links page for other websites with places to visit, and plant fairs to buy those hard-to-find plants.


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May Events updated

The first week of May is National Gardening Week so from the 2nd – 8th there are all sorts of events happening across the UK – including our ANNUAL PLANT SALE on Saturday May 7th – St Michael’s Community Hall, Lichfield Street from 9.30am – 1.30 pm. You can find out what else is happening and how to join in with events – especially on May 2nd which is National Gardening Day – details are on the RHS website.

Our May meeting is on Thursday May 12th starting at 7.30pm at Christ Church Centre when Diana Clement will discuss a Garden for all Seasons, details on our Programme page.

Plant Hunters Fairs are holding fairs (fairly) locally every weekend. You will find full details on their website but briefly on Sunday- Monday May 1st – 2nd they will be at Weston Park; the following Sunday (May 8th) at Adlington Hall, Cheshire; Sunday May 15th in Leicestershire at the 1680s House, Donnington Le Heath; Sunday May 22nd at Norton Priory, Cheshire; and Saturday May 28th at Carsington Water, Derbyshire. Tickets must be booked in advance.

There will be lots of gardens to visit through the NGS this month as well – you can find details in the Yellow Book (collect your Staffordshire one at our next meeting) or on their website or, even better if you have a smart phone, download their app so you can find out what’s open when you go on holiday.

Look at our Links page for further ideas and places to go.


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May events

Although there is still a lot happening in the rest of April, May looks as if it will be just as busy – if not busier.

First of all there is our ANNUAL PLANT SALE being held on Saturday May 7th at St Michael’s Hall, Lichfield Street – full details on our Events page or download a poster.

Our May meeting is on Thursday May 12th starting at 7.30pm at Christ Church Centre when Diana Clement will discuss a Garden for all Seasons, details on our Programme page.

Before we get to May there is a Flower Power Fair at Sandon Hall on April 24th. You will need to book tickets in advance. Following that they have a plant fair at Rode Hall, Scholar Green Cheshire ST7 3QP on Sunday, May 29, 2022 from 11:00 – 4:00pm.

Plant Hunters Fairs are holding fairs (fairly) locally every weekend. You will find full details on their website but briefly on Sunday- Monday May 1st – 2nd they will be at Weston Park; the following Sunday (May 8th) at Adlington Hall, Cheshire; Sunday May 15th in Leicestershire at the 1680s House, Donnington Le Heath; Sunday May 22nd at Norton Priory, Cheshire; and Saturday May 28th at Carsington Water, Derbyshire. Tickets must be booked in advance.

We’ve had a notification of a plant sale in Evesham too – Harrels Hardy Plants are holding a half-price sale at their nursery over the weekend April 30th – May 1st, details on this brochure.

There will be lots of gardens to visit through the NGS this month as well – you can find details in the Yellow Book (collect your Staffordshire one at our next meeting) or on their website or, even better if you have a smart phone, download their app so you can find out what’s open when you go on holiday.


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April

Our April talk, taking place on Thursday April 14th at the Christ Church Centre, is on Japanese Gardens and will be given by Graham Hardman, Honorary Vice-President of the Japanese Garden Society. You can find further details on our Programme page. NB – bring your cheque book with you if you wish to join our new trip on September 15th – details on the Events page.

TSGCN also have a Zoom meeting on Wednesday April 13th at 7.30 when photographer Richard Harvey will talk about Cornish Seascape Gardens. Full details on the TSGCN website.

Also coming up in April are two local Plant Hunters Fairs – the first at Sugnall Walled Garden on April 2nd and the second on Sunday and Monday 17 – 18 April at the Dorothy Clive Garden. There are several others within the Midlands as well – details on their website. Later in the month is a Flower Power Fair at Sandon Hall on April 24th. You need to book tickets in advance except for Sugnall.

There will be lots of gardens to visit through the NGS this month as well – you can find details in the Yellow Book (collect your Staffordshire one at our next meeting) or on their website or, even better if you have a smart phone, download their app so you can find out what’s open when you go on holiday.

Talking of holidays (have you signed up for the Yorkshire trip yet?) this is the month for tulip festivals – just search ‘tulip festival uk’ or have a look at our links page to find more gardens to visit. This photo is from the Pashley Manor (Sussex) tulip festival a few years ago.