“The voyage of discovery is as precious as life itself”
So that’s why whenever I am presented with a new opportunity to travel, I jump at it whole heartedly, especially if it means I get to further develop my Horticultural career.
So when my job as Head Gardener/ Estate Manger for a prestigious location on the outskirts of London, asked if I would consider managing their property in Corfu. I did not have to think twice. Life is full of new challenges, in-fact without them I become stagnant and actively seek out new projects, be it a change in career or a new hobby or learning curve.
Having experienced Gardens in Greece, Spain, Tunisia, Italy, Poland and North East Coast USA, I already have an understanding of the effect and diversity that climatic changes has upon plant species and their distribution. Demographics is an important element of understand of the cultural differences between different growing environments. Taking into consideration the location, the climate, growing season and hardiness rating is key to creating a successful garden and planting schedule.
Corfu is rich in natural plant life and this ecological database is the best place to start. Researching the range of trees, plants and bulbs that grow wild enables the gardener to build upon by introducing species from the same genera that enjoy the same conditions.
Wild flowers are always the most drought resistant and tolerant of localised growing conditions. Naturally adapted to their habitat wild flowers are the key to discovering closely related cultivated species that will thrive in the same terrain. If your looking to re-create a natural rock face with wild alpines or a meadow rich in flora, grasses and mosses then look to nature! But if you want a more controlled, colorful garden that lasts many seasons and always has plants of interest then you will be best to start to advance from native species and construct a plant list that is derived from nature.
Corfu in late Spring was an amazing experience and I look forward to returning in late Autumn, ready for large scale planting of hardy shrubs and perennials before the winter rains. I hope you will follow my journey as Estate Manger and enjoy sharing my articles with your friends and family.