Two Topiary Gardens

On my return journey to Scotland from our trip to the Cotswolds in September (see my write-ups on Snowshill and Hidcote), I stopped off at Levens Hall in Cumbria on the recommendation of my mother. Levens Hall has the oldest and most extensive topiary garden in the world, and since topiary is my spirit garden…

The Living And The Dead

November is a funny time of year. Certain plants remain in flower across the garden — mainly salvias and roses but also Acanthus mollis, pelargoniums and Cerinthe major — and their bright blooms look quite out of place beside those that are dying back. In July I harvested all the spent allium seedheads, and plonked them in a…

Two Cotswolds Gardens. 1: Snowshill Manor

When it comes to patience, servitude and kindness, coupled with a tendency to forget to do nice things for herself, my mother gives the holy saints of Heaven a decent run for their money. Therefore, to celebrate the occasion of her 70th birthday, my sister and I came up with the idea of taking my…