On a resent visit to Foxton Locks near Market Harborough, I saw a dome made up of willow with a seat. I was so impressed with it, I thought it would be nice to make a willow dome for the green belt park area where we live. I am involved in the RHS It’s Your Neighbourhood and Loughborough in Bloom and look after the green belt area.
I decided to make one myself and, after getting the willow together, I set about making the dome by planting the willow, so that it would grow into a living shelter. Once the seat had been put in, the job was done!
We have also recently started a wildlife area by a stream which has a lot of trees and bushes in, putting up nest boxes and also bug boxes for bees and insects.
At the moment I’m getting an area ready with bee and butterfly flowers, using Thompson & Morgan’s Butterfly Mix.
Customer trial panel member Harry Cook has many years of gardening experience, winning several awards for his own garden displays. Harry and his wife Pat are members of It’s Your Neighbourhood with Loughborough in Bloom and look after the area called ‘The Green Belt’ around their house. He made the news in 2012 when he stopped thieves from taking his award-winning petunias!
but what about aftercare?
Its hard to find any guidance on how to look after willow structures
Hi Jane, many thanks for your comment. I’ve just spoken to Harry and he said that he used established willow whips and split the bottoms before planting into sharp sand and then filling the hole up with soil. If you’re growing a willow structure, keep the willows well watered until established and hopefully they will grow. Once they are growing, keep them trimmed into shape (after the first year). I hope this helps. Kind regards, Rebecca.