It’s been three winks since I left Hertfordshire and started my new job at the National Botanic Garden of Wales. Where has the time gone?!
Avenue of Betula pendula
A rose in the Double Walled Garden
I mentioned in my previous post that the weather has been glorious since I arrived. Sunshine every day, with no hint of rain – no wet Welsh weather like I had been warned about before moving here!
I’m settling in well to my new life. It was sad to say goodbye to my old one but in a bitter-sweet way. I’m working in an amazing garden and living in a beautiful part of the country – it’s been a manic few weeks but all the packing and unpacking has been worth it.
The Tropical House
I’m at NBGW with one other PGG trainee, who is in her third and final year on the traineeship scheme – she’s called Becky as well, not confusing at all!! We work with the inside and outside teams on a rota, for three months at a time.
I’m with the outside team until December, Becky is with the inside gang. The first week we spent working together, a few days with both teams, and now we’ve settled into our rotas. This past fortnight I’ve slipped into a routine, I didn’t think I’d settle in and feel at home as quickly as I have done. It can only be a good sign!
Inside one of the nursery glasshouses
I’ve been working in one quadrant of the Double Walled Garden, blitzing the herbaceous beds. Staffing levels are very tight at NBGW, with ten full time horticulturists for one hundred and eighty acres. It makes students like me more valued as members of the team, I’ve been trusted to get on with the job I’ve been given without supervision. I’d better not screw up!
Beds before blitzing. . .
. . .and after!
A busy trainee!
A friendly pheasant
My accommodation in Wales is fantastic, it really does feel just like home. It’s an old farmhouse/lodge which dates back to the 1880s. My dad managed to find an old photo of it when it was in its prime, cool or what!
My lodge, Allt Goch, in the 1880s
It’s about a mile away from NBGW, I can walk to work in twenty minutes. The route is through three fields, which are inhabited by cows and sheep of course! It’s all downhill going to work, the journey back is a bit of a killer – I never realised how steep the hills were in Wales!
Views on the walk to work
The Great Glasshouse in the distance
That said I still think I have the best commute to work imaginable – when the mist lingers in the valley first thing in the morning I realise how lucky to have a job I absolutely love.
A misty morning
My parents came up a week ago for a weekend visit, it was lovely showing them round NBGW for the first time. They loved the Double Walled Garden, my mum couldn’t get over how colourful everything was.
Double Walled Garden
The Great Glasshouse was a winner too, I remember how much it took my breath away when I first saw it.
The Great Glasshouse
The Wallace Garden was looking gorgeous too, with beds of dahlias and wild flowers. I know I’m going to enjoy working in every area of NBGW while I’m here, there’s nowhere I don’t like!
That’s all for now, I hope you enjoyed my first post about NBGW. It will be the first of many more to come! 🙂