Researcher’s Report 2015

Location: Hayle, Cornwall, England
Setting: back garden in a sand dune
Size: 10 m x 30 m
Latitude: 50.2 N
Altitude: 50 m
Rainfall: 1101 mm
Started: 1982
Design and maintenance: Raymond and Sylvia Yarwood
Themes: home garden, land reclamation

What is great about this garden: As a forest garden pioneer from the Robert Hart era, Raymond has managed to evolve his site and establish a great range of plants in a challenging environment. Both he and Sylvia are a treasure trove of inspiration and information about plants and their benefits.

Layer Species
Trees Almond, apples, apricots, Californian beach plums, Sweet Hawthorns -  crataegus arnoldiana, c. douglasii, c. schraderiana  c. azerolus, damson, fig,   pears, persimmon, pineapple guava, plums, Oregon grape, stag's horn sumach, strawberry guava myrtu ugni, Torrey pine Pinus Torreyana.,Small leafed lime, medlar  
Shrubs Berberis darwinii, Berberis vulgaris, chokeberry aronia, cobnuts, currants; blackcurrent, redcurrent, white current, buffalo currant, eleagnus commutata, e. ebbingei,  e. glabra, Goumi berry , e. multiflora ,Autumn olive e. umbellata, gooseberry, honeyberry lonicera caerulea,  Japanese quince chaenomeles, Japanese wineberry, Jostaberry, Nanking cherry prunus tomentosa, beach rose rosa rugosa, sand cherry prunus besseyi, saltbush, atriplex halimus, sea buckthorns, hippophae rhamanoides, vars; Dorana, frugana, Hergo, Leikora, Orange energy, yellow horn xanthocerus sorbifolium
Herbaceous Alexanders, aquilegia, bladder campion, Buckshorn plantain, Chinese mugwort, cotton lavender, fennel, hogweed, lavender, mallows, marjoram,  rock samphire, rosemary, rue, sage, scurvy grass, sea beet, sunberry (rubus), tree mallow, wild cabbage, wild radish.
Climbers           Sunberry, Loganberry, Kiwi Fruits
Raymond and his wife Sylvia live at the end of  a small row of terraced cottages, nestling in the sand dunes between beach resorts and nature reserves, with the waves of the Atlantic pounding the shore a couple of hundred metres away.  “If the wind is right we can hear the sea in our house”. On colder days easterly winds can blow bitterly across the dunes, but strategically placed hedges provide a good protection for the plants..

The terraced house they live in backs on to the second largest dune system in Cornwall known as the Towans, from an old Cornish word for sand dunes. This two-mile stretch of sand made up from ground up sea shells has traditionally been common land and is now managed as a site of special scientific interest (SSSI).