Winter Border Workshop at Petersham Nurseries

I have a workshop this week where we will delve into turning our gardens, in the chill months ahead, into winter borders filled with interesting plants, colours and textures. Anchor plants with attractive foliage, the tracery and silhouettes of seedheads and dried stems and flower heads, and ornamental fruit, evergreen shrubs with scented flowers for…

Kew Gardens – a taste of Autumn in late October

A beautiful cycle ride along the towpath from Teddington Lock, past Petersham Meadows, Richmond and on towards Kew, with Syon House on the opposite bank. 12km enjoying the start of autumn. Clocks back this weekend, and the coldest October day in 10 years, so hats, gloves and scarves were the order of the day. Isleworth,…

Blue

OK, so there is a touch of rose-making-the-blue-purple going on here too though I have weeded out the more obvious not-blues, but the theme, from palest to the boldest, with some blue-grey foliage too, is a cool blue palette. Fruit, leaf and flower all contribute and I refer you once again to Gertrude Jekyll. In…

Yellow

  From the palest blush, soft cool primrose, sulphurous, acid, gaudy, bright, golden, and adorning the garden right the way through the year - this is a richly diverse palette and can be used to many an effect. I've been reading Gertrude Jekyll's book on colour schemes in the flower garden and she is extraordinarily…

Petersham House Gardens – formal gardens, generous borders and a vibrant Cutting Garden

After a cycle ride along the towpath and the Thames sparkling in the sunshine, and nearly being late for taking so many photographs, a look in the Kitchen Garden first, which was the vegetable garden but has been co-opted into an additional Cutting Garden, as well as having the peony beds, Hellebores, many old roses…

On Home Ground – a little peak at Petersham Nurseries

The Garden Shop at Petersham Nurseries is filled with houseplants, whose homes hail from all over the world, together with seeds and tools, pots and gardening equipment and in the blessed rain yesterday, was my home for the day. In the rare moments between torrents, I had a wander through the rest of the nursery…

Kew Gardens, Part One (there will be more tomorrow now I’ve actually booked for the Great Pagoda)

A first look at the newly restored and be-dragoned Great Pagoda. Of course I didn't think to book, so shall be returning tomorrow at 10.30am for that pleasure. I have ascended the Pagoda before, pre-restoration about what, five years ago? But the Dragons are new, 1.8m long on the lower level carved in wood, greatly…

Exbury Gardens, Hampshire

A trip down to Southampton this morning, to drop family off at the airport and then a convenient drive into the New Forest, ponies galore, and the gardens at Exbury. I've never been though know of their reputation for Rhododendrons, Camellias and Azaleas, and for a fine autumn showing of mature Acers. Obviously we are…

My own private oasis – lots of green, a little pink summery loveliness, bamboo, bananas, charity shop finds and lots that love the shade ….

This is a small private garden, no more than 24' wide and a little longer, well possible maybe twice as long, with a mature Horse Chestnut tree, from a neighbouring garden, that shades at least half of it. It was the reason we bought this house, such a beautiful sight in full flower and broke up…