Whatever the Weather

Since the end of August the garden has taken one battering after another. In Broadstairs we have experienced gales from every point on the compass, heavy rain and unusually chilly nights. By the end of September both the Jungle Garden and the Gin & Tonic Garden looked more like they usually do in early November. […]

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Homeward Bound

Before I left England for my trip to India and China I took the bold decision not to attempt blogging whilst I was away. It’s been the longest gap between two posts in six years, but it was the right decision for me and my sanity. Blogging whilst on buying trips is tough, not only […]

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Trebah Gardens, Cornwall

On the steep sides of the Helford River in Cornwall lie two famous gardens, as similar in style as the two halves of a 1920’s semi. The likeness is not so surprising when you discover that both were influenced by the same family at a crucial point in their development. The Foxes, a large, wealthy quaker dynasty, created […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Zantedeschia ‘Picasso’

I have always rather shunned the colourful, smaller cousins of the Ethiopian lily, Zantedeschia aethiopica, mainly because of their artificial looks and regular, cellophane-wrapped appearances in florists’ shops. But, as with most plants, I eventually succumbed and decided to give them a try this year. The beauty of bulbs and rhizomes is that they can […]

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Plants in Detail – Gunnera manicata AGM

You may have picked up on my recent fascination with large, jungly-looking plants. I don’t really have room for such colossi in either garden, but I can still admire them when visiting others’. My first encounter with giant rhubarb, Gunnera manicata, was as a child at Glendurgan in Cornwall, where one can still walk beneath the roughly corrugated, spiny […]

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A Sweet, Secluded Spot – RHS Harlow Carr

Somehow the delights of Harrogate, an elegant spa town in the north of England, have consistently eluded me. So on my first visit in July it was a surprise to discover just how similar it is in many ways to my home town of Bath. The two famous spas differ in that Bath enjoys hot […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Primula japonica ‘Postford White’ AGM

I’m continuing the water garden theme this week with one of my ‘plants of the moment’, candelabra primulas. I’ve been photographing them in various gardens for the last six weeks, and they never fail to show their best side. Happiest planted in continuously moist ground and in large swathes, they really come into their own […]

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Daily Flower Candy: Rheum palmatum ‘Red Herald’

Proving that not all rhubarbs are best stewed and smothered in crumble and custard, Rheum palmatum ‘Red Herald’ put on a tremendous show at the Sir Harold Hillier Gardens last week. Stunning but space-hungry architectural plants, rheums have many great qualities for the larger garden including fine, often colourful foliage, bold flower heads and good […]

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Happy Hostas, Rambling Roses

We are lucky enough to have a small garden at our London home, as well as by the seaside in Kent. On rare weekends when we stay put in the capital, the garden gets some much needed attention. The plot is shady, with woefully heavy, wet soil and poor drainage. This is in marked contrast […]

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