The shady garden in summer and autumn… beginning an A-Z

  I had been preparing for a workshop covering the possibilities for gardening in a little - or a lot - of shade and put together the gallery last year to illustrate some of the contenders that anyone tackling such a proposition might entertain. A perennial question, this, what to plant, planting combination and health…

Arabella Lennox Boyd – invention and boundless imagination in the gardens at Gresgarth Hall

A garden, though visited in 2015, that has a hold on me still, with vivid memories of superb planting, striking vistas, artistry and sheer passion for the gardens and countryside around. The season 'up north' will be naturally a little later than here, 'down south' so while I visited at the beginning of July, climate…

Waterperry Gardens

    Another unapologetic walk down memory lane, this day in 2018, to the remarkable Waterperry Gardens. A joy on so many levels. I was at the HTA National Plant Show at Stoneleigh Park near Coventry yesterday, a tedious journey up and down the M40, especially back but I did make a grateful stop at…

Postcards from Sussex – the extraordinary Arundel Castle and Gardens

  To prevent a general revolt over a daily onslaught of postcards from June 2017, you'll be glad yo note I've left out at least four more galleries from David Austin Roses in Shropshire, the delightful Chastleton House and a mooch around Woodstock and Blenheim Palace. For the not so feint-hearted, please search for stories…

Mottisfont Rose Gardens, June 2018

June 2018 visiting Mottisfont with a fellow rose-lover. A day of laughter and fun. Overblown, blowsy, beautiful, fragrant, lush, a little ragged, absolutely in need of some serious dead-heading - but equally glamorous and hopelessly romantic, there are no rose gardens quite like Mottisfont. Soulful, they inhabit the walled gardens of this ancient priory, clambering…

A return to Penshurst Place and Gardens, Kent – and this time (well, pretty much exactly this time last year) we definitely have peonies ….

A return, after a years' absence, to the walled gardens at Penshurst Place in Kent. Well, a trip down memory lane but one definitely worth travelling down again. This time around, the famed 100m long peony border was looking fine, colourful and fragrant, growing lush and up through the wire grid, and with a long…

A few scribblings on creating a White Garden

  Creating a White Garden Straight out of the block, I'm talking about green. And grey, silver, and variegation. We'll get to white but a few thoughts first. ‘Green is the backdrop to the garden but in its range of shades and textures, green has much more to offer as any foreground interest. Grey dims,…

Dale Chihuly – Glass at Kew Gardens – May 2019

                            A look back to last year when the gardens and glasshouses were once again a home to the glass works by Dale Chihuly. Gone now of course even if the gardens were open, so please don't visit, when we can, expecting…

Kew Gardens – Early One Morning

Rolling back the years, almost exactly four years ago in 2016, to an early morning wander through Kew Gardens. As I was working that Sunday I really must have put on some speed to cover so much from the early 8am opening, heading out by 9.30am to head back down the river to Richmond and…