Garden Portrait: Spring at Hinton Ampner

This Georgian house stands on a ridge of chalk above well-treed farmland in Bramdean, Hampshire. It was inherited by Ralph Dutton, the 8th and last Lord Sherborne, in 1935 and he devoted the next fifty years to improving it. Author of ‘The English Garden’ he produced a very elegant house, landscaped gardens and parkland. On…

Plant Focus

My final tulip offering is ‘Prinses / Princess Irene which is the exotic colour of a sunset. Electric orange and stripes of violet and rust make this one of the most exciting tulips I grew this year. It is long-lasting and contrasts beautifully with a very dark tulip such as ‘Paul Scherer’ or ‘Havran’. They…

Plant Focus

One of the last tulips to show is this lovely slightly scented ‘Bruine Wimpel’ or ‘Malaika’ described as brandy-snap or caramel brown and lilac-pink. Not a brown tulip as such, but like a delicate tea stained silk, the colours are unusual and quite beautiful. And long-lasting too. I’m  not sure if mine were true to…

Plant Focus

Although I prefer the bronze, copper and almost black tulips the most, I did plant a few pink ones. This is a late flowering one (supposed to be May) called ‘Greenland‘ – an orchid rose-pink with green stripes. With all the sunshine we have been having, it opened this week!    

Tulipmania #3

This collection is from Sarah Raven and called the Scented Copper Tulip Collection  – includes tulips ‘Ballerina’ (very highly scented), ‘Bruine Wimpel’ (lightly scented), ‘Sarah Raven’ (unscented) and Tulip whittallii (highly scented). I’m not sure about the scent, I shall have to get a bit closer to them, but the colours are fabulous and in the…

Tulipmania #2

My favourite combination is this collection at the back of the garden, some are in pots and others were randomly planted in the raised bed where the forget-me-nots do their thing, rampantly marching through the garden and self-seeding everywhere. I pulled out loads of seedlings in the autumn, but they still manage to dominate the…

Tulipmania #1

These pots of white/pink striped tulips with the green/purple ones and lipstick red are located at the front of my house which is in a north-facing courtyard where the sun never actually reaches the steps on which the pots stand. It can get a bit blustery in the courtyard, but so far these lovely flowers…

Plant Focus

I love tulips, they are my favourite flower even though they are quite short-lived. Having not planted any for the past two years I went a bit mad in the autumn and bought bags of bulbs in copper, orange, dark purple, pale pink and deep red. I finally got them planted in December filling every…

Five Minutes with Narcissus

DesleyJane – a lovely arty scientist now living in Melbourne – is also a wonderful photographer and a huge macro fan. She has a new weekly challenge called “regularrandom“ for anyone to join in with which involves spending 5 minutes with the subject matter. Choose a scene or an object and keep fixed on that…

Garden Portrait: Bourton House

Bourton House Garden is one of the best kept secrets of the Cotswolds. The most famous garden in this region is Hidcote which attracts coach loads of visitors from London so can often be a little overcrowded. No problems here. This 3 acre garden surrounding an 18C Manor House is much quieter. Located only a…

Cornish Beauties

Visiting St Ives on Saturday I wasn’t expecting to see daffodils for sale on the harbour-side. Buckets full of golden beauties and these double white spicy scented Narcissus Acropolis variety. The two bunches I came away with both have deep orange-red centres and are absolutely beautiful. This collage is for my friend who enjoys photographing flowers in…

Flower Portrait: Magnolia

The first magnolia of the year, for me, seen in Knightshayes Court, (North Devon) woodland garden last Sunday, 13 March.