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- Summer 2023 in the Parsonage Garden

The latest news from our gardening volunteers.
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Never was a soul with more passionate love of Mother Earth, of every weed and flower, of every bird, beast, and insect that lived”.
A. Mary F. Robinson, 1883: Emily Brontë.
We all love to welcome visitors to the Brontë Parsonage Museum but how often do we ask, hope and positively encourage them to stay?

Well, here in the garden we delight in seeing our visitors take up residence, live off the garden, thrive and move on to pastures new.

As we toiled the garden: pruning, feeding, weeding, watering, we watched over the weeks as a blackbird family made their bijou home amongst the ivy. Constant flights for food, both for the brooding mum and then her hungry brood of chicks, crisscrossed our own paths; the brood became our neighbours temporarily and even let us quietly photograph them.

Meanwhile in the corner of the garden a multi storey apartment block became home to our colony of bees who busied themselves amongst the abundance of flowers, swiftly returning to their bug hotel, passing the ladybird feeding on the aphids.
We are often asked about the heritage of the garden – how was it laid out in the time of the Brontë family’s residence, how was it planted, what plants were recorded etc., but few stop to enquire about the insects, the birds which might also have lived in that space and how that population may have changed over the years. Perhaps it’s time to record our wildlife for future enquiries, our own nature survey for future comparisons?
Meanwhile as we work amongst our garden ‘neighbours’ we are busy preparing for the annual plant and seed event on Saturday, 12th August. Free to enter and located within the back garden, all voluntary donations will be invested back into encouraging the flora and fauna and delighting our visitors - each and every one. There will be plenty of seeds of the beautiful stately aquilegia, the ever-popular and striking poppies and more, together with a very broad range of plants grown from cuttings from around the garden.

But for now, it’s time to return to the garden, weather permitting, as busy as bees!
Clare Pickles
Volunteer Gardener at the Brontë Parsonage Museum

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