Throwing some light on shade

  The Shade Garden in Spring and Early Summer Right Plant / Right Place Here are my cobbled-together notes from a recent workshop on shade gardening, highlighting the planting possibilities for those folk who are lucky enough to have a shady spot in their garden. There is a wide, wide - wide - range of…

Nymans, pure Romance …

  After dropping my Sister- and Mother- in law off at Gatwick Airport, a short drive down the M23 to Nymans, a National Trust Property of great charm. Romantic ruins, beautiful gardens, far reaching views across woodland and downs, formal gardens and naturalistic, some tragedy, some infamy, quite a lot of beauty. Sadly too early…

Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, Hampshire – summer, this time around

The Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, run extraordinarily well by Hampshire County Council, is an exceptionally varied, beautiful, diverse, botanically curated landscape with so much to recommend, at pretty much any time of year (their winter garden is a beauty and possibly the best in the UK). An extended stay at Mottisfont and then the charms…

Taking a peek inside the Alpine House at RHS Wisley – and a scented meander down through the Rock Garden into Seven Acre Wood ….

A little peak inside the Alpine House which sits atop the Rock Garden in the RHS gardens at Wisley (the rose garden is behind, an allée of Bonsai trees to one side and the vegetable garden too, if you need to get your bearings. This is a traditional glasshouse where the plants are mostly displayed…

Kew Gardens – Desert, Tropics, Mountains and Forest….

Through the gates on a bright, chill afternoon a couple of days ago and herewith a tour of the Princess of Wales Conservatory and Davies Alpine House by way of the Rock Garden and Woodland beneath the Temple of Aeolus. First stop, the Princess of Wales Conservatory and the Arid/Desert environments - There was a…

Great Comp Garden Autumn Extravaganza

Great Comp Garden Autumn Extravaganza A trip out to Kent today, to these RHS Partner Gardens near Sevenoaks. Their Autumn Extravaganza hosted a collection of plant nurseries and other artisan purveyors, on their immaculate lawns and in a Marquee right outside their back door. Well, that was the reason to visit today though these gardens…

An Afternoon at RHS Wisley – the Double Herbaceous Borders, Cottage and Jubilee Rose Gardens, a touch of woodland and more …

The spectacle of the Double Herbaceous Borders at RHS Wisley at the height of summer! I definitely have Border Envy though I appreciate how much work goes into this long-lasting display. Such healthy happy plants too. The Country Garden, pictured below is no less of an extravaganza but the effect in many parts is of…

A rainy day at Wisley – but read on – there’s Cherry, Camellia, Rhododendron, Magnolia & more…

An exceptionally damp day, last Friday, at RHS Wisley in Surrey but undeterred was I, with my Driza-bone coat, wide-brimmed hat, umbrella and camera - it was business as usual ... Much opportunity for photography with ornamental cherries and Magnolias in blossom and looking fine; Camellias dotted throughout Battleston Hill and Seven-acre Wood; likewise some…

Q… K for Kew – an hour through the woodland, family beds and rock garden…

Aconitum Bicolor (below)   From here, we leave the Family Beds borders and step into the Rock Garden (bypassing the superb Salvia Borders are there is still a long way to go before they look at their best - October at least) First, this extravagant show of seedheads which at first I took for Pulsatilla...…