Sunday, May 27, 2012

Out and about

Yesterday on my way back from climbing at Bowles Rocks I went to see an NGS garden in West Hoathly called Duckyls Holt. I enjoyed it very much. I won't post pictures of the garden because it doesn't seem right (since I didn't ask). The site stretched along a busy narrow road and it was interesting to see how they'd managed this. The garden was above the road and ascended a little in a terrace. It seemed very well-established - big flowering shrubs and very solid topiary. I went in through a little wooden gate in a wall, to a courtyard area. There was a small conservatory and patio, and beyond that a formal area of box and perennials (some loveley poppies) with wisteria trained over the centre. Beyond that was a lawn, with statues. Continuing past some sad ruined greenhouses and cold-frames I came to a rose-garden, not quite in bloom yet and with little other planting. Nice structure though. I turned back and went to the upper terrace. This consisted mainly of a covered swimming pool and a very posh greenhouse. There was a series of big mature shrubs in flower - very beautiful - and a small enclosed area with a water-feature of a terracotta sphere. On the other side of the house is a further area of lawn, perennials, and some ferns. The garden had a settled and accomplished feel about it. A lot of work had clearly been put into it over many years. I loved the feeling of someone growing to love and understand their spot. I felt a bit sad about the ruined greenhouses - perhaps there's a story behind that - and I wondered whether the road had been quieter when the owners had moved there. I had the feeling they'd been there many years. The thee ladies I spoke to were all very friendly and the eldest exceptionally so, despite being very tired from doing a lot of work in the heat. I hope the little euphorbias she gave me take, as a lasting souvenir of their garden.

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