This Sunday (21 February) there is a chance to visit the garden at Devonshire Mill, one of the oldest houses in Pocklington, to see double snowdrops, hellebores and ferns in a woodland setting.
There are different areas of interest with a stream, raised beds, greenhouses, a polytunnel, hen run and well-stocked herbaceous borders.
Devonshire Mill is a Grade II listed building thought to date from 1808. A booklet about its interesting history has just been printed and will be available. It was a watermill powered by the beck and was grinding flour until closing down in the 1950s.
The present owners, Chris and Sue Bond, are keen amateur gardeners who have worked hard to create a special place.
The two acre garden is constantly being improved with extra planting along a path or another area to sit.
All the fruit and vegetables are organically grown and Chris and Sue do nearly everything themselves without professional help.
The snowdrops were planted in the 1800s and since then have spread in drifts like snow in the two old orchards and along Pocklington Beck which runs through the garden. Sue said: “When we moved here more than 20 years ago I was amazed by the sight of such beautiful snowdrops in February and March and decided to share the enjoyment with others.
“In the past 15 years the thousands of pounds raised for charities by our Snowdrop Open Garden Days have given hope to many people –traditionally snowdrops symbolise hope!”
Last year Sue and Chris joined the National Gardens Scheme which helps with publicity. Over the years the NGS has raised more than 45 million for nursing care. The organisations supported are the well known Macmillan, Marie Curie, Hospice UK, the Carer’s Trust , Parkinson’s UK and also the less familiar QNI (which campaigns for nursing care for patients in their own homes) and Perennial (Gardeners Royal Benevolent Society).
Devonshire Mill is a short distance from Pocklington for walkers .There is some parking on the premises and considerate parking is permitted along Canal Lane with no restriction of time. The mill is open between 11am–5pm. Cost is £3.50 (Children free).
Meanwhile, Fawley House, at North Cave will open tomorrow (Friday 19 February) between 11am and 3pm as part of the National Gardens Scheme Snowdrop Festival.