Origins

As this week has been our children’s half-term holiday, we travelled Up North to spend time with family in Yorkshire. On the way, we stopped off in The Peak District. I have been exposed to hiking since I was little, but never particularly valued it until I was a student at University in Leeds. Every…

Brushing past at Great Dixter

It’s a while since I posted A Perfect Day at Great Dixter, and therefore I felt completely justified in returning again today.  I took along a willing victim, my younger daughter. I may have said before that cake is important when taking young people garden visiting.  So on our arrival, we briefly brushed past the poppies,…

Generous Geraniums

I am enjoying a stable and long-term relationship with hardy geraniums.  They are steadfast and true.  They never panic or give in to drought or deluge.  They are not rocked by storms.  They resist the onslaught of predators.  They adapt to a myriad of situations.  They compliment and enhance the natural beauty of those around…

Lupin-otropolis

Before I get carried away with the peonies, I think I should just pause to appreciate the lupins. This is ‘Thunderclouds’, grown from seed last year, and now flowering prodigiously.  I’ve never noticed before the wispy calyx that nestles the newly-opened flowers.  It is like a fur stole, soon to be carelessly dropped as the…

Bridging the Gap with Biennials

I have extended my cutting patch this year, adding two new raised beds.  I got a little bit overexcited by my new space and went on a spending spree with the marvellous Chiltern Seeds. You might have thought that two varieties each of Cosmos, Zinnia, Scabious, Nicotiana and Nigella might be enough to sate my appetite…

Contentment vs. happiness

My daughters are at an age when there are lots of comparisons.  Clothes, make-up, phones, grades, ‘likes’… Acquiring such things can bring happiness.  But does it bring contentment? Happiness is a short burst, and generally comes from something external.  Someone praises your work.  You get 300 followers on social media.  You click ‘buy’ on your…

Lilacs and Cuckoos

The garden is starting to flaunt it.  So before I get carried away with early summer floriferation (yes, I may have made that word up), I thought I would just write a little post about lilac.  And cuckoos. We inherited four lilacs (Syringa vulgaris) in our garden, so I have had to guess at the varieties. By…