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Meet Surya Davies, our Head Gardener and learn about his passion for the garden as he sits down with Small luxury hotels of the world. Read the full article here.

What is your favourite season in Pembrokeshire, and why?

All the seasons in Pembrokeshire are truly beautiful and bring their own unique splendour. However, spring is my favourite time of the year here. One of the benefits of working outdoors is that you see the start of spring in the snowdrops and the daffodils before others may have even begun to notice the change in season. Our driveway, streams and meadows are filled with early colour as winter is coming to an end, while rhododendrons introduce summertime and the flower borders then blaze with colour.

What are you currently planting and growing in the Grove grounds?

There’s lots going on in the garden at the moment, as we are planting broad beans and garlic, sowing the first early leafy greens, as well as planting spring bulbs. There is a lot of bed prepping and clearing down herbaceous borders too. Contrary to popular opinion this is actually one of the busiest times of the year for gardeners!

How do you keep the gardens green in the sustainable sense of the word?

We are currently developing many wildlife areas to encourage the natural habitats to regenerate. We have a beautiful Pembrokeshire wild flower meadow, to attract native insects. To the front of the hotel there are two stunning spring-fed ponds to encourage native aquatic life. The Grove has a relaxing woodland walk for guests to enjoy the peace and tranquillity of the area where we ensure good woodland regeneration techniques are used, including leaving snags (felled logs).

We work with local bee keepers and have bee hives on site, which in turn brings fresh, organic produce to the hotel. We use sympathetic gardening practices throughout the grounds which take into account nesting birds as well as spaces for insects to nest. We are also really keen composters and process all the garden waste to be returned into the soil, which makes for fantastic growing.

Where would you recommend for a Welsh country walk?

I would recommend a brisk walk to the standing stones of Waun Mawn (the original blue stone circle which was later moved to Salisbury Plain). If you walk to the summit above the stones, on a clear day you can see all the way to the Wicklow Mountains in Ireland – it is simply breathtaking. For the more adventurous, explore Canaston Woods and the Narberth Valley or head down to the estuary which are all within a half-day walking distance of the Grove.

What local experiences would you recommend to green-fingered guests?

I would recommend a leisurely stroll around Picton Castle’s Arboretum – the beautifully kept garden is a botanical hidden gem and only 20 minutes from the Grove.

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Grove seen past trees and grass

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