Sunday, 26 July 2015

Winchester Cathedral Flower Festival

No gardens in this post, but still on a flowery theme, a few weeks ago saw Winchester Cathedral transformed with dozens of stunning displays.  There were seemingly thousands of visitors the day I visited, so it was tricky to take pictures without loads of heads in the way, but I've picked out a few.  

I hope that added a bit of cheer to this grey day.  I'm sure it's raining sideways out there!

Monday, 20 July 2015

Furzey Gardens

 On the way home from Bournemouth I stopped at Furzey Gardens in the New Forest, a mainly informal woodland garden with lovely views to the Isle of Wight.  The highlight at this time of year has to be the cottage garden, packed with vegetables, fruit and flowers which perfectly complements  the 16th century cottage.

The cottage used to house a family with 13 children and feels like a little dolls house inside. I'm sure the garden wasn't as pretty back then.  It's run as a charity with volunteers and students with learning disabilities and is just gorgeous.  

Thank you for sticking with me while I catch up on my garden visits. Not too many more to go!

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Christchurch and Graduation

 The visit to Mottisfont a couple of weeks ago was en route to a stay in Bournemouth for youngest daughter's graduation.  It was a lovely couple of days by the sea and exploring the New Forest and as usual I found some gardens to visit.
This is the Red House Museum garden in Christchurch. Tucked away near the Priory and the Quay, it's a peaceful, pretty place, packed with roses and cottage flowers.

I loved the walled herb garden with it's sunken lawn and pond.

I then had a wander round the beautiful Priory and admired the stained glass windows.

And here is youngest daughter after the ceremony.  She actually finished last year, but for various reasons had to wait for this year's graduation.  We're incredibly proud that she made it in the end.

We rounded off the day with a trip to the beach near Hengistbury Head for a cooling paddle.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Holland Park, London

On a recent trip to London to visit my daughter, we decided to meet in Holland Park.  Divided into several areas including woodland and sports pitches, the remains of the old Holland House provide the backdrop for various different gardens and spaces that feel a world away from the busy high streets nearby.

At the centre is the Kyoto Garden, with it's pond full of koi carp. Donated by the Kyoto Chamber of Commerce it's a peaceful place with some beautiful, restrained planting, and peacocks wandering around.

The Dutch Garden is very different but very pretty. Formal beds filled with seasonal planting, I loved the mix of bright annuals and cabbages, chard and lettuces going to seed. 

Under a covered walkway are 11 murals depicting a garden party in the grounds in the 1870s. Painted by Mao Wenbiao in 1995, with many of the faces being real people who commissioned the murals. What a lovely idea.

One of the loveliest parks in London. Worth a visit if you're in the area.

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Mottisfont Abbey Rose Garden

As promised, I've picked out some of my favourite shots of Mottisfont rose garden. It was a slightly drizzly day and the roses were just beginning to go past their peak, but that seemed to give it an even more blowsy, romantic feel.  Words can't really convey how wonderful this place is. The perfume, the colour, the quiet hum of insects going about their business. Heaven!  I managed to avoid the crowds too as it was a midweek morning.
There's plenty more to see at Mottisfont.  The house and grounds are lovely and there's the usual National Trust tea rooms, plant sales etc but it's the old roses that are the star of the show around midsummer.  I'm so glad I made it at the right time this year.