Gardener goes on a busmans holiday!
One thing common to all gardeners is they love to talk about their favorite subject, even if they're on another topic they always end up talking about plants and gardening!
I've just had a few days away with a fellow garden designer visiting gardens! We try and look at gardens in a different area at least once a year, it serves as a source of inspiration but it also makes me realise how lucky I am. We had two nights in Gloucester and Stroud and managed to cram in seven gardens. We visited Stone House Cottage Garden, Hanbury Hall, Spetchley Park Garden, Painswick Rococco Garden, Rousham House, Abbots House Garden and Iford Manor. Unfortunately, as the weather has been so cold this year, it was too early to visit gardens and see them at their best. Stone House Cottage Garden was lovely, it had alot of unusual plants and a nursery so you could buy anything you liked. Lots of unexpected nooks and follies. A real treat for garden lovers. Spetchley Park Garden was spoiled by the smothering of ground elder. It looked like it was once a lovely garden that had been let go and is now being reclaimed. Rousham was good but we were too early in the season. Iford Manor, a Harold Peto garden, was beautifully set with amazing views of the surrounding countryside, it didn't matter where you were in the garden there was a pleasant smell of the many wisteria. The hightlight of the break was most definately Abbey House Garden at Malmesbury. I would put this garden in my top 5! There was no one thing that stood out, everything stood out! The large circular pergola surrounding the herb garden, the laburnum arch in flower, the topiary that greets you as you enter the garden, the woodland garden along the River Avon, with a mound of Aquiliegia, the list is endless. Finally as we left there was a crowd of women all sporting cameras, a little unusual until we noticed a man's tanned buttocks, no not a sculpture, this is the home of "The Naked Gardeners".