National Garden Scheme Snowdrop Festival 2019

Galanthophiles rejoice, snowdrop season is upon us once again. In recent years snowdrop appreciation has become a mainstream activity with hundreds of gardens throwing wide their gates outside of normal opening times to welcome eager visitors. Thus we are not only permitted to gaze upon spangled carpets of white blossom, but also to enjoy familiar […]

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Open for the National Garden Scheme: Denne Manor Farm

  I’m taking a short break from my Chelsea reporting to bring you news of a superb new garden opening for the National Garden Scheme here in Kent this weekend. I visited Denne Manor Farm back in late April on what can politely be described as an unseasonably cold and dreary Sunday. Being partially urbanised […]

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Garden Appreciation: Sweetbriar, Ash, Kent

  When a new garden opens for the National Garden Scheme it's always exciting, but when that garden has been created by two professional gardeners with a passion for rare and exotic plants it's certain to thrill. As soon as Steve Edney and his partner Louise Dowle begin to talk, their infectious enthusiasm spreads to […]

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So Far, So Good!

  Day two of our garden opening is always a more relaxed affair and I am thoroughly looking forward to it. On day one the rain absented itself, but the wind did not. At times yesterday it gusted so hard that I got lost in a blizzard of white begonia flowers cascading from the shelves […]

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Waiting and Anticipating

  When preparing for our garden opening, I find I end up doing anything but gardening. Over the last two days I have been painting the front gate, unearthing chairs from the cellar, jet-washing the terrace, scrubbing garden furniture, making beds, stapling leaflets and dashing to the shops for this and that instead of tending […]

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The Final Countdown 

  Twelve days to go and preparation for this year’s garden opening feels like one of those bad dreams where, try as one may, one never reach the finishing line. I can usually let go of the reins a little during August, but with the opening happening at the end of the month I have to […]

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The Watch House NGS Open Weekend 2015

I must have done something very good in a previous life (heaven knows I am struggling to be good in this one) to deserve the weather we enjoyed this weekend. I would describe it as nigh-on perfect: temperatures in the early twenties, a pleasant breeze and just a few wisps of cloud high in the sky. […]

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Sun Worshippers

Opening our seaside garden for the second time we were not sure what to expect, but the sun shone and the visitors came, and came, and came. In the space of four hours we welcomed over 120 lovely people, from as near as the next street and as far as Newark in Nottinghamshire. Our new […]

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Que Sera Sera ….

… Whatever will be will be, as the song goes. I have reached a point now where all I can do is clean and tidy in preparation for our house guests. The garden is in good shape, although we could have done with warmer weather to coax some of the flowers into bloom. The forecast for […]

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National Garden Scheme Opening Dates

It’s official, our garden at The Watch House will be open as part of the National Gardens Scheme on Saturday August 2nd and Sunday August 3rd 2014.  If the weather is kind we’ll be displaying awesome agapanthus, exciting echiums and cavorting cautleyas, all in a sheltered, sunny, subtropical courtyard setting. We’re breaking with the tradition […]

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