Sunday, 27 July 2008

NGS Meltdown

What an absolutely fantastic weekend it has been for the weather. This is how summer should be and I have had a wonderful weekend visiting two gardens open for the National Garden Scheme. The first one we visited was in Wimborne, Dorset called The Secret Garden at Serles House on Saturday evening The house is a small Victorian semi which looks quite small from the front. The front garden is immaculately kept and you just get the feeling looking at it from the road that the house hides a real gem behind. To enter the garden you go through the house which is completely amazing, with all its original features and into a wooden conservatory (past a man playing the piano) and into this wonderful garden full of follies and wonderful artifacts which have been collected and placed around the garden.
This time instead of tea and cake, we were treated to wine and nibbles - very sophisticated!

Whenever we visit a garden, I always joke with my boyfriend that we will probably be the youngest there, which doesn't happen very often now that we are in our early forties (does almost being 44 still count as early forties?) but low and behold there were two people there younger than us. Maybe the promise of alcohol lured them out but they seemed interested in the garden, so perhaps the younger generation will catch onto the wonders of gardening. Perhaps gardening will become the new rock n roll? Oh dear perhaps that's not such a good idea. We will all be dressing in beige next!
The second garden we visited was Hilltop at Stour Provst in Dorset.
I always make sure I visit this garden once a year, as it's my favourite. This garden is the perfect cottage garden in every way. No photograph could do it justice and certainly not today and the sun was too bright for photography. I took a few snaps as a memento; it's just simply gorgeous and worth a visit if you live in Dorset.
Of course we had the obligatory tea and cake and it was so cool sitting under the great oak tree as it was scorching in this south facing garden. The best of all is that Brian sells the plants he grows and as cottage garden plants are my favourite, I always come away with one or three especially as the garden has 600 dahlias which are my favourite plant.

We've dug up all the potatoes this week and they are delicious. They really are worth growing as home grown potatoes have a flavour which can't be matched from those in the supermarket.
We are munching on the cut and come again lettuce, so I think I will sow some more in the space left by the potatoes.
One of the butternut squashes have a baby squash growing on it, which is so cute. There are lots of flower buds forming on the other squashes, so I hope the slugs don't get them before they start to turn into the fruit, although the cat found a toad on the lawn which we put amongst the vegetables, so I hope he likes slugs because they're on the menu.

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