Author Archives: mechhps

“Pop-up” Member’s Garden visit: Sunday 20th January

snow-dropHHPS member Barbara Stalbow has very kindly offered to show her collection of snowdrops and aconites (to HHPS members only).  All things being equal, this will be on Sunday January 20th in the afternoon between 2 and 4 p.m.

If you wish to visit, please ring Barbara on 02089542218 to let her know you are coming and to check that nothing untoward (weather etc.) has caused a cancellation or postponement.

The address is “Hornbeams”, Priory Drive, Stanmore, Middx. HA7 3HN

Thanks to Barbara for her kind offer.

Message from Hardy Plant Society HQ

We have been asked to alert our Herts Group membership to the current position at the national HPS Office in Evesham.
  • It would be extremely helpful if members could avoid phoning the office for the next few weeks unless the need really is urgent.

  • Enquiries can be emailed to and will normally receive a reply the same day, if within office hours.

As you may already know, National HPS has a very small staff, and there have been issues with illness and bereavement over recent months.  There have also been difficulties with the IT systems, including a couple of days when access was impossible. Those problems have now been resolved but there remains a significant backlog of membership renewals to be dealt with.

  • If you have renewed your national membership by post, please be assured that all post has been opened and all cheques etc are being kept safe, but it will take a while longer for these to be processed and appear on your bank statements.

  • If you still need to renew your membership, please use the online facility or the postal form from the last newsletter.

For the next couple of weeks the seed orders will be prioritised, ready for the Shropshire team to pick out the seeds and get them posted to you. If you haven’t ordered your seed yet, please do so as soon as possible, again using the online or printed form.

The final date for receipt of seed orders is 10th January.

Please be assured that we are doing all we can to get the office running smoothly again as soon as possible. Thank you for your patience.

Wishing you all a very Happy New Gardening Year

Judi Deakin

Honorary Secretary

Next Meeting: Saturday 5th January 2019 at 2pm

John Tyler ‘The World of Fungi’

Today’s talk explores their lives and how they impact on ours. John trained as a zoologist and conservationist and spent much of his working life developing and running wildlife reserves in London and Kent with a particular interest in introducing children to the natural world. Based in Buckinghamshire he now gives talks and runs guided walks and has for many years studied glow-worms. 

Happy New Year 2019 to you all

Next Meeting: Saturday 1st December 2pm

We look forward to seeing you all for the final meeting of 2018,  which is next Saturday 1st December. It is also our annual Christmas Party.

Bob Brown, our speaker next Saturday, will be talking to us about Geraniums – Restraint and Discrimination. There can’t be many of us who don’t grow geraniums so this should be a talk relevant to us all.

Bob needs little introduction as he is a stalwart of the plant nursery scene and appears regularly on gardening panels, plant trials judging panels and as a speaker. His nursery, ‘Cotswold Garden Flowers’ near Evesham, is on almost everyone’s ‘must visit’ nursery list. His comprehensive catalogue features many unusual varieties and he personally grades all the plants he sells so you know which varieties he really favours and why.

Our Herts HPS Christmas Party follows after the talk. This is the occasion when members provide the nibbles and the committee co-ordinate these and provide drinks.  Please bring a plate of bite-sized food that is ready to be eaten (preferably on a disposable plate). Any precious plate/container needs to be “off-loaded” and returned to your car before the meeting so it doesn’t get lost.  Labels for anything special (gluten-free etc) are always welcome.

Volunteer help would be very much appreciated to help clear away the chairs and tables at the end of the meeting as this task is becoming more and more onerous as the committee continues to be small in size.


A date for your diaries 2019!


The HHPS Coach Trip for 2019 to Essex Gardens will take place on Saturday 15th June. We will be visiting Langthorn’s Plantery, RHS Hyde Hall (RHS members plus one guest are entitled to free entry) and the private garden at Furzelea.

Further details and the booking form will be included in the Spring 2019 Newsletter. I do hope you will be able to join us.

Maggie Lacey

Saturday 3rd November 2018: AGM, followed by Member’s Talk: Peter Osborne. “Our Garden Compost – Make Friends with the Worms”


2pm Memorial Hall Wheathampstead


Peter Osborne explains his personal approach to quality compost making.

If you have ever been to Heather and Peter Osborne’s garden and marvelled its beauty and lushness then you will be interested to hear how Peter makes the compost that contributes to the spectacular display they produce every year.


Autumn 2018 Newsletter


The Autumn 2018 Newsletter is now available on the Herts HPS website.

The Editor of the HHPS Newsletter hopes you enjoy the Autumn edition and would welcome any contributions towards the Spring 2019 edition – long or short.

Please email Susanna at







Plant Heritage Herts & Beds Group Meeting Thursday 18 October

Plant Heritage Herts & Beds Group Presents Growing Fruit in Hertfordshire

Martin Day will discuss fruit growing on allotments and in walled gardens including suggested varieties and growing techniques.
Martin has been growing both soft and top fruit for over 20 years in the St Albans area. He’s a member of the RHS Fruit Group, has managed the fruit collections in local hotel and college kitchen gardens, and helped set up a community orchard at Forty Hall in Enfield. The talk will include growing hints, minimising pest problems, and suggest some varieties which grow well locally. There will also be some history of famous local fruit nurseries such as Rivers and Laxtons and historic orchards in the area.
Thursday 18th October 2018 at 7:30pm
Sandridge Village Hall, 39 High Street, Sandridge, St. Albans AL4 9DD
Everyone welcome – free for Plant Heritage Members, £3 for non-members
Refreshments will be available
Plant Heritage (NCCPG) is a registered Charity

Next Meeting: Saturday 6th October 


We begin our year on 6th October by welcoming Marcus Dancer talking about “Scented Plants throughout the Year”.

Marcus runs a nursery in Hampshire specialising in Clematis.

Your Autumn 2018 Newsletter will be available for you to collect on the day.

Message from Heather

Dear members,

As some of you know, I will be retiring as Secretary of Herts HPS group at the AGM in November.

I am writing to appeal for a volunteer (or volunteers – this could be a job share) to take over, even if only as a short term or stop gap capacity.

I have very much enjoyed doing the Secretary’s job, met lots of lovely people, and found it a fulfilling and satisfying role.

The main tasks are to be the contact with Head Office, the Committee and local group members, and to prepare the agendas and distribute the minutes from Committee meetings and the AGM.

How much time you give to the job would be very much up to you. I will be happy to talk it over with anyone interested, and to give help and advice.

Please contact me on 01727 856354, 07816 128460 or email

Thank you