Tulips at Keukenhof

May is rushing by and I haven’t yet shared with you some of the tulips from Keukenhof.  If you are like tulips at all, do visit; I’ve been wanting to visit for several years and I wasn’t disappointed.  We stayed in Amsterdam from 25th to 29th April.  I’d never visited Amsterdam before and found it a lovely city.  The museums were spectacular.  Everything was incredibly well organised, even though it was the peak week for visiting Keukenhof we walked straight into the park, just showing our pre-bought ticket at the entrance. Continue reading

The Peony Farm 2017 – Centro Botanico Moutan

This week has been hectic, trying to catch up from our week away at this vital time in the garden.  I haven’t manages to comment on as many posts as I would have liked, nor caught up with reading many from last week – sometimes life just gets in the way of blogging!!!!

As promised earlier in the week here are some images of the Peony farm which is about 20 minutes drive from where we live. Continue reading

The Italian Iris Society Garden in Florence

Last week I showed you some of the Bearded Irises (Iris germanica) that I have in my garden; they are a plant that grows particularly well in my sun-baked, free draining soil without needing any irrigation. I like the foliage too during their non-flowering season so when I read in the Italian Gardening magazine that I subscribe to that the Iris garden in Florence was open for a short period and that there were 2,000 irises on display I couldn’t wait to go!

The garden is situated just to the right of Piazzale Michelangelo where you can enjoy one of the best views of the city of Florence, so worth coming just for that.

The View from Piazzale Michelangelo over the Arno

The View from Piazzale Michelangelo over the Arno

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The yearly visit to the Peony farm

I don’t have any peonies in my garden, not because I don’t like them but because their beauty is so fleeting plus they flower at a time of year when there are likely to be many rain storms and wet bedraggled peonies just look sad.

But I do like them and love the perfume of the tree peonies so every year I visit a peony farm not far from us where I can enjoy seeing them without the worry of having them in the garden. This post is for Julie at Peonies and Poses, from the name I’m sure she loves peonies; maybe one year you could visit Julie and see this amazing place for yourself. Continue reading

Visiting an Iconic Vegetable Garden

I grow a lot of vegetables; we are almost self-sufficient for most of the year which I have to admit actually gives me almost more pleasure than the rest of the garden.  The first time I made Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables using ALL my own produce (including the olive oil) I had such a deep sensation of contentment it is hard to describe.  Now it is something I make on almost a weekly basis from the end of July onwards; I still have enough of everything to make it one last time this year, but the courgettes are like marrows so I may use butternut squash instead this time.

I love cooking as much as I do working in the garden so I was thrilled with my birthday present from my husband (last mention of the birthday I promise); dinner and a night at Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons.

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Piet Oudolf’s Millennium Garden at Pensthorpe

Described on the website as “One of the most inspirational gardens in Norfolk, the Millennium Garden offers an acre of floral delights, creating a lush tapestry of colour and texture.  A stunning cascade of mixed perennials and grasses, designed by the renowned plantsman Piet Oudolf, the bold, colourful drifts and the naturalistic planting style make the Millennium Garden a particularly popular display with both garden and wildlife enthusiasts.

Flourishing with colourful butterflies and insects during the Spring and Summer months, and providing essential nesting materials and seeds for birds throughout the Winter, this fine Norfolk garden is worth a visit even after its mid-August peak, with the Autumnal colours of the perennial foliage providing a rich spectacle well into the Autumn.” Continue reading

A visit to Hyde Hall

This is the first of several posts showing some of the gardens I visited when in England to celebrate my birthday.  We arrived on 31st August; collecting the hire car was a bit of a nightmare as the one they wanted to give us didn’t have a large enough boot. In the end they gave us a larger car 4 wheel drive and comfortable so all was well; the time spent arguing plus lots of traffic on the way to the Dartford tunnel meant we almost didn’t get to Hyde Hall in time. The woman at the entrance said “we’re open until six but last entry is 5.00, it was 5.02! luckily she was kind and let us in, phew! Continue reading