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19th August - Elizabeth Sawday - What a lovely thing a rose is.

19th August Elizabeth Sawday What a lovely thing a rose is.

Elizabeth Sawday grows roses on the Chichester plain in a little village called Apuldram.   
Elizabeth grew up just down the road in Birdham and her first love was ponies and horses.   She hated school, left early and started working from 15 years old; she graduated over the years from picking tomatoes, looking after children, waitressing and even tried a spell at college attempting to become a farm secretary.  Her first proper job was at ICI plant protection group as a filing clerk.  Elizabeth fell into rose growing by accident.  After leaving ICI to have her first child she began helping her Mother in Law who had started Apuldram Roses a few years earlier.  When she retired in 1999 she gave the company to Elizabeth and Jonathan, her middle son.  Over the years they have taken the roses to most of the big RHS shows, building displays to show off their roses to their best.  They finally got their first gold medal in 2009 at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. Whilst at the shows Elizabeth have taken part in question times or given talks, the most daunting and enjoyable of which was at RHS headquarters in Vincent Square.  Apuldram Roses grow 35,000 roses incorporating 200 plus varieties.  Elizabeth’s mission is to take away the mysteries of rose growing, to persuade you it’s not all hard work and to leave you feeling far more confident about planting and growing roses in your own gardens.  Her father always said “find something you love to do because you’ll spend a long time doing it”, wise words.

Garden Visits

There is  always an interesting and full programme of garden visits.  Places are  always limited and often fill up quickly.  Visits are announced in the  Newsletter and bookings are by post only. Details will be enclosed with  the Newsletter. From 2012, due to the high demand for garden trips, only  members will be  able to apply in the first instance. Guests will be  placed on a waiting list. After 6 weeks from the date of member  application, guests will  be allocated any remaining places.

This  friendly and thriving gardening group was started in 1993 following a series of horticultural courses given locally by Mary Payne MBE, a much respected and well loved garden expert.  Such was the enthusiasm stirred  up by these sociable and informative weekly gatherings, that several  students decided to form a club  to enable all garden lovers to meet on a  regular basis with like minded people, and be inspired by renowned  speakers.

A programme of 10/11 lectures are arranged each year. These are held on the third Monday of the month (apart from December) in the Methodist Hall, Silver Street, Nailsea, 7.30 p.m. for an 8.00 p.m. start. Each lecture lasts around an hour with questions and answers at the end.  

The Lectures cover a varied programme to cater for all tastes and are given by local, national and international speakers.  From garden design, specific plant groups and travelogues to individual  gardens such as Yeo Valley Organic Garden, Sissinghurst, The Shakespeare  Trust Gardens and The Bishops Palace Garden, Wells.   
Due to our large membership we have been able to attract such well-known horticulturalists as Matthew Wilson, Roy Lancaster, Jekka McVicar and many other excellent speakers.

Day  trips to gardens are organised at various times of the year, with the  aim of visiting the less well known prestigious gardens that aren’t  usually open to the public.  Fagus also organises longer visits to  gardens further afield, both at home and abroad.  These have proved  extremely popular with members.

Please click on the links to discover more about Fagus, or see the “Membership” page to discover the benefits of becoming a member.
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