Plympton Gardeners Association

                                                                                                                                 November News    

 Plympton Gardeners were pleased to welcome Diane Flynn, from the charity Friends and Families of Special Children, to their November meeting.

This is the charity that the Gardeners have opted to support in 2020 and Diane came to talk about the work they do. This involves providing signposting for families whose child has been identified as having disabilities, to sources of information and training.They also run clubs and activities for the children enabling them to socialise and try out different activities. In addition there are groups for older children and for siblings. Diane suggested that they might use any funds the PGA can raise for activities related to nature, such as gardening and forest schools.

Paul Hutchins chaired the meeting and announced that an amended copy of the PGA constitution would be sent out to members so it can be scrutinised prior to the AGM in February. There will be no meeting in January. The Association will be running the Harewood House coffee bar in the week beginning 6th January and Paul asked for offers of help and donations of food for this. 

The Trading Secretary, Dave Wickstead, has seed catalogues available from Suttons and Dobies. Members can order seeds and gardening sundries at a discount.

The monthly competitions were won by Sally Luscombe for fruit and veg. and also art, by Brian Cush for flowers and Shirley Williams for needlecraft.

After refreshments there was a gardening quiz and this was won by Sally Luscombe.

The next meeting of the Association is a Christmas social evening on Thursday 5th December, with games, refreshments and also musical entertainment provided by Al Wallers.

Jobs to do in November



Fruit and Vegetables


Complete digging of deep trench beds and start digging shallow trench beds for brassicas, salads and root vegetables.

Apply light dressings of lime to next years brassica and legume beds.

Plant ‘bare root’ fruit trees.




Cut back and tidy ornamental grasses.

Take root cuttings from suitable perennials eg.Phlox and Verbascum.

Tidy up leaves and gather into containers to make leaf mould.

Lift and store dahlias after the first frost.

Plant tulip bulbs.

Plant bare root roses.

October News

John Gilding, welcomed all the members and visitors to the October meeting and requested that the visitors join - membership is approaching 100. He introduced Sara Rittershausen from Burnham Nurseries, Newton Abbot. She brought a wide range of orchids from the nursery which is 70 years old. Her talk was inspiring and provoked an array of questions.

Every year Bob Shaw organises a “grow the heaviest onion” competition. This year the heaviest onion was grown by Lynne Langridge (2lb 10oz), 2nd Bob Shaw (2lb 8oz)and 3rd Lorna Rogers (2lb 5oz).

Bob also launched his daffodil competition. The five blooms, in a pot, will be judged next March.

Help and contributions were requested for the Harewood House coffee bar which will be run by the PGA from Monday January 6th till Friday 10th . If you would like to help in any way please contact Paul Hutchings on 519504.

The four monthly competitions were well supported. The winners were Belinda Witts(a vase of flowers), Dr Keith Clapton( runner beans)and Sally Luscombe with both (a drawing of Plymbridge) and (knitted flowers).

The next meeting is on Thursday November 7th at 7:30pm in Harewood House.


                                                   Jobs to do in October

  Fruit and Veg

  Take cuttings of gooseberries. Prune grape vines. Clear onion beds. Start digging of deep trench beds for potatoes, onions and legumes. Renew top dressing on rhubarb beds.


Continue planting spring flowering bulbs. Plant new herbaceous perennials. Divide overcrowded herbaceous perennials. Clear summer bedding. Lift dahlias after first frost. Bring tender plants into the greenhouse for the winter.

   September News     

At their monthly meetings Plympton Gardeners have competitions for members in four different categories: flowers, fruit and vegetables, art and craft and needlecraft. The horticultural entries are judged by experienced judges using RHS criteria and with marks out of a possible maximum of ten. At the September meeting there were lots of high quality entries in the flower and fruit and vegetable competitions, as would be expected at this time of year. When the results were announced there was a spontaneous burst of applause for the maximum score of 10 marks achieved by Carol Penhallurick with her entry of 5 perfect dessert apples. An exceptional result!

The speaker at the meeting was Tricia Howard from Hidden Valley Gardens and Nursery who gave an interesting illustrated talk on a year at the 3.5 acre garden, which she maintains alongside her husband Peter. She talked about the history of the garden, which they have developed over a period of 20 years, and showed pictures of it throughout the year. She explained the work they have to tackle each month, including the periods when they are open to visitors.

The Show Secretary, Paul Hutchings, reported to members on the PGA 70th Annual Show which was held at Harewood House in August. He was pleased to state that the show had attracted more entries than in previous years, including many people who had not exhibited at the Plympton Show before. Also the numbers of people coming to see the Show were higher than in previous years.This augers well for the future.

The Trading Hut at Stoggy Lane will be open just once more this year, on Sunday 6th October. The members annual competition for the heaviest onion will be judged at the October meeting.

The next meeting of the PGA will be held on Thursday October 3rd at Harewood House, at 7:30pm, when the speaker will be Sarah Ritterhausen talking about Orchids.

                                                                                         Jobs to do in September

Fruit and Vegetables

Top dress sprouts with Nitrate of Soda.
Lift remaining onions, potatoes, carrots & beetroot.
Plant out spring cabbages.
Apply grease bands to all fruit trees.


Take cuttings of tender perennials such as pelargoniums and osteospurnums and keep in a greenhouse or on a windowsill over winter.
Plant out spring flowering biennials such as wallflowers, foxgloves & violas.
Continue to feed hanging baskets.
Sow sweet peas.
Deadhead perennials that are still flowering.
Collect seeds from perennials that have finished flowering.
Prune climbing roses as they finish flowering.



















                                                              A new service for members from January 2014

Members who cannot get to the trading hut but wish to purchase garden supplies can now email Dave Wickstead (at  to place an order, which can then be collected at the next meeting.




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