Friday, 24 October 2014

'The Mesters'

Rising from the woodland floor, silent, forbidding, cloaked in ivy - 'The Mesters'.

Pat joined us this week, so decided to use his muscle to help me in the creation of a new feature at the entrance to the Cedar Walk where we have have been encouraging the ivy to create ground cover.

The ivy is successfully colonising the ground now that light is penetrating after the removal of the overcrowding pines. But it is rather flat, featureless and needs something else. And although the ivy provides excellent cover, it does not flower. Ivy only flowers when in its 'arboreal' state (growing up something). And ivy flowers are one of the most useful late season nectar sources. So, always on the lookout for ideas, I was interested to see sleepers placed vertically in the ground at the Sir Harold Hillier gardens as a landscaping feature. Hmmm. I can use that idea.

We have many big logs left from tree felling, lying on the woodland floor in repose. I decided to dig pits for them and then heave the logs to stand vertically. The new area immediately has another character with brooding potential and already feels almost neolithic.

So,  when I've manhandled more of these heavy timbers into their resting holes
the ivy will be able to grow up the logs and flower; the flat nature of this area will be broken and we'll have darkening shapes suggesting something from prehistory to welcome visitors to this part of the garden.  As with all gardening, the delay of gratification comes as standard. It will take some years for the ivy to cover the logs.

And as for the name - a 'Mester' is an archaic Nottingham term for a man in authority. "Give your ticket to the mester, Jonny'". The interweb suggests the word has old Norse roots perhaps connecting us linguistically to the time when this area formed the part of the old Danelaw nation from the 9th to the 11th centuries. It may be that my reading of the Game of Thrones series has also subconsciously entered my head, where the druid-like 'Maesters' provide spiritual and medicinal guidance.


Ladies and gentlemen, may I introduce to you  - 'The Mesters'.

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