Boost for post-lockdown gardening plans at Peterborough Cathedral

May 12, 2020

Once they can safely return from lockdown, the gardening team at Peterborough Cathedral is looking forward to some ‘Winter Snow’, followed by ‘Halcyon’ days with ‘Regal Rhubarb’.

No, not a weather forecast for maximum crop yield, but the names of some of the 15 thriving young hosta plants recently donated to the Cathedral by Andrew Whittle of Freston House near Ipswich. Andrew has one of the largest private hosta collections in the UK, cared for by William Dickin and the expert gardening team at Freston House.

Cathedral Head Gardener, Tanya Simons, plans to plant the hostas on the south side of the Precincts, in the shady area underneath a large copper beach tree, near to some ancient gravestones. This will become one of many floral focal points being established in the beautiful setting of the Cathedral grounds, to enhance the experience of visitors. A wildflower area was set up elsewhere in the Precincts last year to add biodiversity and encourage pollinating insects.

The donation of hostas came about through the Cathedral’s new Head of Estates and Facilities at the Cathedral, Thomas Küpper, who currently lives in Ipswich.

He said: “We are most grateful to Andrew for his kind donation of the hostas and I know our Head Gardener is very much looking forward to getting them planted and looking their best in their new home.”

The Cathedral grounds remain open to members of the public arriving on foot for daily exercise, during normal opening hours. The Cathedral itself is closed in line with government and Church of England advice during the COVID-19 outbreak.