The Walled Garden
Lesley Lewis, owner of The George’s
for 22 years, purchased the three acre Walled Garden on
the Penty Parc Estate, Walton East in 2007. The garden
was is a state of disrepair, even dereliction, at this
time. Restoring the walls and returning the garden to
productivity will be a lifetime’s work, but Lesley
and The George’s team have shown tremendous energy
and enthusiasm in starting this task.
The restoration project is a natural adjunct to The George’s
trading ethos. The garden will be restored sympathetically
with wildlife and the natural environment major considerations.
The productive areas are organic and supply local produce
with few road miles to The George’s kitchens. This
is a labour of love and a confirmation of all that The
George’s team values in ethical and sensitive trading
The story so far:
• Large areas of the walls have been repaired by
a local stonemason – there remains a tiny bit of
touching up to do when the swallows quit their nests!
• The ruins of the gardener’s cottage by the
East wall have been restored as a small energy efficient
dwelling for Lesley herself.
• Five beehives and a bee keepers’ shed have
been added and the first garden honey is now on sale.
Wild flower banks and careful planting provide plentiful
food sources for our busy bees.
• The greenhouse is fully operational and has contributed
tomatoes, cucumbers and assorted leaves to the kitchens.
• The strawberry beds are in their second year of
production – sadly no jam but several very fat squirrels!
• Our vegetable beds are currently producing an
organic supply for the kitchens – we have much to
learn but are pleased with our first season.
• An orchard is established with assorted berry
crops this year and a promise of larger fruits in the
future. We have completed the first steps to espalier
our cherries and other fruits against the South wall:
we were a bit hesitant but the trees look like the book
advised so fingers crossed for the future.
Our raised beds are now established so
we hope to produce our own asparagus in future years.
Our bees feed enthusiastically on our
wild flower and lavender beds and banks.
Did we do all that? Looking back, we realise just how
much has happened in the last five years. The Victorian
dipping pool may have to wait for another year but one
The heavy preparation work that underlies
all this is no longer evident, as the garden settles back
into quiet productive life. Much of the garden remains
natural parkland, husbanded to promote wildlife and habitat
bio-diversity: a pleasant place to rest from our gardening
efforts and reflect upon our relationship with the land
and our place in it.