It may not be freezing cold outside at the moment but the team have been keeping a close eye on the long range weather forecast with regard to whether to protect the tree ferns this winter. With the collection now at 15 and, having seen the potential for the overnight temperatures dropping below zero and into the minus', they decide it is better to be safe than sorry and wrap them. For details of the 10 new tree ferns that were added to the college gardens this summer, see blog entry 18th September 'Adding A Touch Of Jurassic To The Gardens'.
|Cutting The Hessian|
|Tying The Hessian Collar|
Cutting a large roll of hessian into 15 equal sections sufficient to wrap the thickest trunk they wrap the crown, tie it in place with rope and fill the open top with dry leaves. The protective hessian collars will be removed in late spring, folded, stored and reused again next winter. With all the ferns beside the bridge wrapped they move on to the four in the border beside the Nuffield building which contains the tallest of the collection.
|The 11 Tree Ferns Beside The Bridge Wrapped|
|The Tallest Tree Fern|
In order to reach the top of the tallest fern two tripod ladders had to be used to reach the crown, working carefully so as to not knock the fern over, it was only planted two months ago, they wrap the hessian collar around it, tie it in place and fill the space with dry leaves. Protected, the temperatures can now drop below zero!
|Leaves To Protect The Crown|