Compost, garden tidying and a long walk in the hills

Well this week got off to a much better start than last week no dramas and I got the willow fedge weaving finished on Monday, woo hoo, 11 days plus Isabel's two days and the workshop attendees weaving sees this big job finished for this year, 16 bulk bags of branches for David to use in the dead hedge extension and just under 100 podcasts listened to by me over that time. Time to move on to the next big job tomorrow.


 Did you know we do tours of the nursery and gardens?

Group bookings & tours are very welcome, and we ask that you email to book in advance so we can give you our full attention for your visit. Gardening groups, clubs, the rural, horticultural societies or any group with an interest in plants and gardens are very welcome. Email us at
We are now taking 2024 group bookings for our popular Garden and nursery tour of Quercus Garden Plants.
The guided tour lasts about 45 minutes – 1hr and includes the story of how the gardens and nursery were were created with detailed information about many of the plants on display. You will have plenty opportunity to ask questions about the nursery and gardens, plants or indeed any garden and plant advice. After the tour you will be able to browse the nursery sales area and stock beds where you will find a great selection of familiar and more unusual plants propagated here in the nursery.

Final bit of the larder cupboard renovation finished. Thanks to David for building the shelves for all the kilner jars 😍 no excuse for not finding anything now 😃

Over winter I've been writing information leaflets for our customers and visitors to pick up when they visit Quercus. There is one for every one of the 8 months we are open and you will find them next to the nursery map as you come into the nursery. Please do pick one up when you visit, take home or give to friends to encourage them to visit the nursery too. They are full of whats looking good that month, what to look out for as you walk around the nursery and gardens and garden tasks to do that month. We hope they will be helpful and help you get more out of your visit to Quercus 😃

Behind the scenes – Onto the next big January task...... I’ve spent the last day and a half turning our compost heaps. I am definitely working off the winter / christmas excess. Compost, especially home made compost is the food of the garden, feeding and mulching the soil and recycling and returning all that goodness to the earth 🪱 These huge industrial things, built by David, take all our garden and nursery plant and compost waste and are 3 x 1 metres and about 1.2m high. The compost goes through a year in the bins, turned after 6 months. So the compost started last January is now in the third bin and will be used in the gardens this spring. Its lovely stuff again, most years its excellent quality and texture. I started by barrowing what was left (quite a lot!) of last years compost down to the Woodland garden. Build last year using the no dig method, the central bed was in need of topping up with compost, all I can say is thankgoodness I was barrowing it down hill! Between 20 and 30 barrowfuls have topped up the border, and I gave it a spring clean as I went, enjoying the snowdrops as they are coming into flower. Then it was time to turn the middle bin into the bin which we will use to mulch the borders as we tidy them over the next few weeks 💪💪💪
Today I turned the last bin into the middle one, this is the newest, so still a lot of structure and lumps and clumps but it will break down over the next 6 months. I managed to get it done before the torrential rain came in just before lunch 🌧🌧🌧
I'll be the dead thing on the sofa tonight medicating with wine and chocolate 🤣
I am not enjoying this latest storm, I could feel my anxiety increasing with the gusts of wind, fortunaly no more damage and I was very pleased to see some blue sky as I left at the end of the day 🌤

Time to get on with turning the compost heaps

good looking compost this year

Compost left from last year onto the woodland border

Company at the compost heaps

After turning the compost heaps its time to start tidying the nursery gardens today, starting on the bottom terrace with the Topiary garden, then the Winter garden and half the Cornucopia garden. Lots of leaf lifting, cutting back the perennials, re-writing labels, potting up some cyclamen and euphorbia seedlings I found and replacing a couple of plants that had died. Here are some of the plants looking great in the Topiary and Winter gardens, despite the time of year there is lots to see, especially the Winter garden. I cant wait for all the bulbs to start flowering.

Winter Garden

Winter Garden

Topiary Garden

Topiary Garden

Back to the bottom terrace on Friday and I got the Cornucopia garden finished and almost finished the wildlife garden but ran out of time, dry weather and light! The bulbs are on the move poking up through the bark and the blue tits were busy in and out of the bird box in the bird border 😍

Cornucopia Garden

Cornucopia Garden

The past three days I've been working away on the bottom terrace tidying up the gardens there for spring. I love the before and after, the sense of having achieved something that is visible and the signs of live coming back to the gardens. As you'll have seen in the plant photos there is lots of colour and interest in these borders even though its the first week in February. I didn't quite manage to finish the wildlife garden which I started today but its all progress towards opening in just over a months time 😕

Topiary Garden before

Topiary Garden after

Winter garden before

Winter garden after

Cornucopia Garden before

Cornucopia Garden after

We are so lucky to have so many great walks from our house here in Peebles. Today we walked up Glensax, past Hayston Estate and up the Glen to the base of Dun Rig where we stopped for a break in the old Glensax buildings. A couple of showers on the way back but a great 10 mile walk and we finally tired Maisie Mouse out 🤣

In anticipation of spring, apple blossom

This weeks random post - after last weeks post about turning the compost heaps and the things you find..... when I was putting the compost on the woodland garden border later in the week I spotted a face staring up at me out the compost and uncovered this wee guy!?!? I mean all our compost in the compost bins comes from the nursery so its all self contained. Any way I took him home, gave him a wash and he looks quite at home on my shelf of frogs (I like frogs, they are cute, toads too)

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  1. What a funny frog find! Indeed, the things you find in compost heap.
    The gardens are looking lovely. Wishing it was such springlike here. Making one want to relocate to Scotland! And the walk sceneries, breathtaking as ever.

    1. Isnt it! Lol, whatever next in the compost. Our weather is all over the place, some calm dry weather would be great. We are so lucky with all the walks we have here.


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