Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Tuesday 29th April 2014.

On Sunday Barnsley House welcomed the Gloucestershire Gardens Trust led by Sophie Piebenga, the weather held and I had the pleasure of showing about thirty 'garden mad' guests around the garden. A little trepidation had seeped into my mind; but my fear of thirty 'experts' soon dissipated when they voiced their enthusiasm towards the tea and cake to be served later, proper gardeners! In fact I found the whole group very interesting and informative; so much so that I may have solved, with their help, one conundrum and found an interesting element to add to the planting when we restore Bed 3.

Spring exuberance....a mass of periwinkle and Arch Angel with towering purple Honesty.

The whole garden is exhibiting the verdant look studded with the poster paint colours of Tulips, the gold section of the Broad Border a perfect example down near to the Frog Fountain. Tulips 'Alabaster', 'West Point' and new to the garden 'Evergreen' float around the foliage of grassy Day Lilies, Astrantias, Bowles Golden Grass and stunning in bloom Paeoni 'Molly the Witch'. I'd forgotten about 'Evergreen' until it's muscular stems thrust substantial soft parrot green buds through neighbouring plants, a quick note referral reminding me of it's name.

T. 'Evergreen'
T. 'Alabaster'

T. 'West Point'

'Molly the Witch' with Tulip 'Alabaster' a self seeded Angelica and then a sea of acid Smyrnium perfoliatum. Layered Cornus controversa 'Variegata' frames the window of 'The Close', suite 8 to be exact and in my top three suites. A shower of rain has polished the garden.
At the other end of the garden, next to the Temple and pool is Bed 4, again more spring exuberance with Tulips 'Black Parrot' and 'Spring Green' within a sea of various textured herbaceous foliage such as Delphiniums and Geraniums phaeum and psilostemon.

T. 'Black Parrot'
The shrub with clusters of white flowers is Bladder Nut (Staphylea colchica), there was a very large specimen of this lovely bush in what was then the 'secret garden'; now known as the Spa and this particular plant was an axed off sucker from said plant just before the bulldozer moved in, needs must when the devil rides!

Staphylea colchica or Bladder Nut!

Along the railings some willow hoops have been strapped to add more support and height to a couple of Clematis.....the self clinging and large flowered 'The President' and the softer green and non clinging indigo blue 'Durandii'. Further around again looking from the lawn a willow 'yurt' has been put up for the Sweet Pea 'Beaujolais' and small plugs of Ruby Chard scattered in front and in any gaps. This Chard and Sweet Pea will add to, hopefully, the late season theme of rich colours in this spot. The Staphylea too has great rich autumn tones. Looking at the flat topped and raggy fringed Juniper with it's Allium triquetrum/Honesty 'petticoat' and on to the blossom of the weeping Crab Apples is a wonderful soft scene linking Bed 4 to another area of the garden, beautiful! Through the gates and on to the Potager...


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