Triumph Over Adversity – Tresco Abbey Garden

When, in 1834, the handsome Augustus Smith secured the lease for the Isles of Scilly, I wonder if he was aware of the legacy he was to leave behind? The son of a wealthy Hertfordshire family he had the resources and energy required of the newly styled Lord Proprietor. He set about improving employment and education […]

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Growing Vertical in Victoria

Victoria, once a grey and unexciting slice of central London sandwiched between Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey, has been undergoing something of a transformation.  For those of us that work the area it’s been painful.  The redevelopment of the creaking underground station seems already to have taken a lifetime, with completion another 5 years away. […]

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Wallington Hall, Cambo, Northumberland

Northumberland is a wonderful, wild, unspoilt county in the north of England, once the frontier between rampaging Celts and civilised Romans. The region is noted for its landscape of high moorland and forests, and is mostly protected as a National Park. Northumberland is also the most sparsely populated county in England, with only 62 people […]

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Summer Serendipity

The English language is full of wonderful words, if only one can find the opportunity to use them. Thought to be one of the hardest words to translate into other tongues is ‘serendipity’, meaning ‘the accident of finding something good or useful while not specifically searching for it’. And so it was, by taking a […]

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Plant Portraits: Digitalis sceptrum

For the most part, the experience of gardening is a succession of small triumphs and minor failures, all of which make us stronger people and better gardeners.  Of course our patience is sometimes tried by storm and pestilence, then just occasionally we get to enjoy a major achievement. It may not be a big deal […]

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Windy Ridge, St Margaret’s at Cliffe

The National Gardens Scheme is an absolutely wonderful charity, allowing gardeners and garden lovers access to thousands of private gardens across the country every year. Participating gardens come in all shapes and sizes, offering everything from high horticulture to naturalistic and ecological styles. What all the gardens offer is a rare glimpse into a nation’s […]

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Having A Moment

All gardens have special moments when they look their best. For many it happens in May or early June when new growth is still fresh and green, and before anything has started to flop, yellow or require dead-heading. Our seaside garden is having a moment right now, alive with the bright pink flowers of Geranium […]

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Mottisfont – The Meeting Place by the Fountain

‘It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important’. Antoine de Saint-Exupéry In Saxon times, just a few yards from the River Test lay a natural, spring-fed pool, or ‘font’, over three metres deep. The font provided the focus for village meetings, or ‘moots’, and so it is […]

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Chelsea 2013: The Arthritis Research UK Garden

As the clock ticked around to 8pm on Wednesday evening, we finally reached the Arthritis Research UK Garden, winner of a gold medal and the People’s Choice award for best garden. After a cold and drizzly day, the sun finally emerged from behind the clouds, accentuating the many contrasts in this inspiring garden. Designed by […]

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Geranium palmatum versus Geranium maderense

Three years ago when I started The Frustrated Gardener this was my first ‘proper’ post. For some reason it has gone on to be one of the most popular articles I have ever written, so I have taken the liberty of updating and reissuing it. I continue to grow both species alongside one another, sometimes losing […]

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