Grottos and seafood

An exploration of the very different colours and textures of the Gironde. Chalky whites and greys are the background to bright splashes of colour from Oleander and Hibiscus, with the wonderful blue shutters popping up in the background.

Many Faces

A couple of days ago I posted about our visit to The Salutation garden, in Mischief Managed. I took so many photos that there were far too many for one post.  I have saved the dahlias for today. The Salutation is the best garden I know for dahlias.  That is not to say there aren’t others…

Mischief Managed

We just had a lovely day out.  I can persuade our daughters to enjoy a garden visit if there is a) cake or b) the beach at the end of it.  Today it was b). We visited The Salutation in Sandwich, and ended up in Broadstairs, much as we did in A Grand Day Out a couple…

Into the Jungle

My mum and I went on an expedition to the jungle. We didn’t fly there.  We drove there in a little red mini. We went unprepared, without a mosquito net or insect repellent.  But we were wearing plenty of sun-cream. We’d set out for Great Dixter.  The expedition leader (me) failed to check whether it…

Time Travel

Warning: there is a certain amount of ‘twee’ in this post. I am not one who harks back to a perfect past, but I do have a fondness for pretty little towns.  Tenterden is a pretty little town.  This is the Town Hall, with the twelfth century St Mildred’s Church tower behind. Tenterden was once…

A Grand Day Out

The UK is experiencing a glorious heatwave that has so far lasted for two weeks and looks set to continue.  When the temperature rises to over 30°C, it is time to head to the coast.  This is what we did last Sunday. We started out in Sandwich, at the Salutation gardens.  We visited here two years…

Highlights of Hampton Court

As I said in Worthy Causes at Hampton Court, my favourite three gardens were not show gardens. The ‘RHS Grow Your Own’ was my out-and-out favourite garden.  Whilst it was largely about food production, there was delectable companion planting. I suspect this rather stunning living wall might need daily watering in summer… This garden had…

Up to the highest heights

On Sunday we took Stevie for a hang-gliding lesson.  Stevie had made the mistake about a year ago of casually saying it looked fun.  I made a mental note and proudly presented him with a gift voucher for his birthday.  For some reason it has taken some months for him to book it. We all…

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.  And 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…

A Perfect Day at Great Dixter

I’ve always felt that in any one year, there is one perfect ice-cream.  Usually near the start of summer, or even late spring, often the first really warm day.  You find the ice-cream van at just the right time, and its Mr Whippy is just the right consistency, and the 99 flake is just the…

Peeling back the layers at Great Dixter

On Saturday it was the Great Dixter plant sale.  I have never visited Dixter so early in the season, generally visiting for the tulips in late spring, and again in the summer, for the dahlias and annuals. Great Dixter (in East Sussex but near the border with Kent) was the home of the late Christopher…

Sissinghurst at the start of the season

  I live about ten minutes’ drive away from Sissinghurst Castle.  In the last 8 years, there has probably never been more than a three-week period when I have not visited.  You might think I would get bored, but no.  There is always lots to see; constant change and flux.  Since Troy Scott-Smith took over…