Could this be the most photogenic flower ever?

Like with so many spring bulbs, you spend hours watching over them, singing to them, telling them little stories, begging them to open. Then just as your back is turned (you have put the kettle on to boil, or just nipped to the loo), TA DA! The most magnificent flower has sprung open!

Salvia Salvation

Sissinghurst in October is a gentle place. There is space for quiet contemplation and restoration of the spirits.

The Walk to the Boulangerie

We have just returned from a holiday in France.  I got into a habit whilst we were there of walking to the Boulangerie for bread and croissants each morning.  Before anyone else was awake. I woke up at about seven, pulled on my clothes oh-so-quietly, made a cup of tea oh-so-quietly, and crept across the…

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…

Vintage Silk

As you may have noticed, I have a thing for bright and deeply saturated colour.  But I have other weaknesses too.  Back in autumn I was seduced by a certain supplier of tulip bulbs and gave into temptation.  I decided to try some sun-faded tones: vintage silk alongside my usual velvet and satin. I selected…

A Profusion of Pots at Perch Hill

I went for total indulgence in the hot spell last week.  I reasoned that it was too hot for serious gardening, so I may as well visit other gardens and bask in the tulip displays.  So on Friday it was Great Dixter and on Saturday I took the family to Sarah Raven’s Open Garden at Perch Hill….

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…