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…

Two Cotswolds Gardens. 2: Hidcote

Of course, Hidcote was the main reason we had come to the Cotswolds, but our off-the-cuff visit to Snowshill on the previous day had furnished us with an interesting contrast. Hidcote and Snowshill seemed to be worlds apart, in atmosphere if not in geography: Where Snowshill was compact, homely, light-hearted and delightfully ferny at the…

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…

“Time Rolls His Ceaseless Course”: Abbotsford House and Gardens

If you are a fan of historical and romantic novels, you may be familiar with the works of Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832), one of Scotland's most famous and prolific authors. His classics, Ivanhoe, Rob Roy, Waverley, and many others, brought him a good deal of fame and fortune, and with his riches he bought a…