Gallivanting Round Up

wp-image-816878959jpg.jpgWe do like to cram as much as we can into any jaunts that we make, fitting visits to other places around a central purpose, in this case visiting fellow blogger Kate of Barn House Garden. We were made to feel very welcome by Kate and Hitesh and their friend Jackie from down the lane who opened her garden for the first time for the NGS in conjunction with Kate’s opening. It is always strange seeing a garden in real life that you have only seen photos of and I was completely disorientated as Kate showed us round and I now need to refer to the map of her garden to remind myself where I have been! What good friends we have all been making through blogging and meeting them in person is even better – thank you Kate for your hospitality and for all the plant related goodies!

The day before we met up we travelled to Ralph Court Gardens near Bromyard in Herefordshire, very much a ‘fun’ garden for adults and children alike, as Brian of  Our Garden @19 confirmed, having taken his grandchildren there. As well as the water features I showed in the earlier post there were several other fantasy and culture sculpture gardens to keep visitors amused or entertained.

Places2016IMG_7606The private gardens at Hereford Cathedral, offered as a guided tour two afternoons a week during the summer, provided an oasis of calm amidst the hustle and bustle of a busy Cathedral city. Our elderly guide provided fascinating information about the cathedral as well as the gardens, which covered courtyard, cloisters, Vicar’s Choral, Dean’s and Bishop’s gardens, including a well-stocked bed of Bishop dahlias.

Sunday morning took us to Kate’s and then a whirlwind afternoon taking in the Wyndcliffe Court Sculpture Garden, Veddw House Garden and an NGS garden where we narrowly missed meeting up with Brian from @19 who tells us he was there on the same day!

Wyndcliffe Court Sculpture Garden surrounds an Arts and Craft listed house now owned by two artists and a range of sculptures from local artists are displayed around the formal gardens, all for sale and with prices ranging from an affordable £20 or so to £12,000. Although able to walk past plants for sale with barely a second glance, I did consider some of the artwork but instead left with more ideas of artefacts I could make myself…

sculpturesIt was interesting to read the philosophy behind the gardens at Veddw House, as Anne and Charles confess to be passionate about gardens but not about gardening, there being more to life than gardening, and they describe their garden as being about ‘patterns, shapes, colours, drama, sculptural hedges and views’ and that certainly comes across, the Pool Garden (enhanced with black ink) being a case in point:

wp-image-1080707299jpg.jpgIMG_7631 IMG_7635 IMG_7632

I realised there was a problem with my camera part way through the day, with the settings inadvertently having been changed, and subsequently am missing some of the photos I thought had been taken, including most of the NGS garden and several taken at Kate’s too.

All sorted by Monday, where the first stop was Brobury House Gardens, with delightfully varied terraced gardens leading down to the River Wye, available for hire as a wedding venue and a brilliant location for memorable wedding photos. I really liked the planting here – it was honest, varied and unpretentious, and all impeccably labelled. I failed to find a gardener to whom I could express my pleasure but will email as I really felt they deserved praise for what they are achieving there.

Places20161On from here to Hergest Croft, very much between seasons and a little disappointing until we found the herbaceous borders within the kitchen garden which were a pleasure to inspect:

IMG_7665Missing out the nearby Westonbury Mill Water Gardens (where we would be following the coach party who were just leaving Hergest Croft!) we then moved onto Bryan’s Ground, where the ‘intimate garden rooms’ are enhanced by follies and and a range of what you might describe as ‘shabby chic’ planting. A recent article in ‘The Garden’ explains the slight shabbiness as a deliberate part of the design and for me it works, but I don’t think everyone would agree.

IMG_7670 IMG_7668 IMG_7680 IMG_7681 IMG_7682Final stop of the day was of course to my favourite garden, back home in our own after a very enjoyable few days away 🙂 There is such a lot to learn and enjoy from visiting other gardens and lots of ideas to take away, with different elements appealing to different people. I suppose it would a rare occurrence to happen on a garden that to us is perfect in every way – so perhaps the best we can aim for is to be content with our own…



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22 Responses to Gallivanting Round Up

  1. What fun! Some inspiring shots here. So happy you shared this trip.

  2. Great tour…thanks for sharing news and photos. I saw Veddw about a month ago and loved it, especially the Pool Garden. Anne and Charles are super.

    • Cathy says:

      You are welcome – we met Charles on our visit and he was indeed lovely. Did you get to see any hawthorn in thd UK or were you too late?

  3. Brian Skeys says:

    You certainly packed some gardens in on this trip Cathy. Two I will have to put on my list to do, I also like the style of Bryan’s Ground. If you revisit the area I would recommend you do go to Westonbury Mill and Stocktonbury.

    • Cathy says:

      There certainly wasn’t time to visit any more on this trip but thanks for confirming that Westonbury is definitely worth adding to an itinerary

  4. We’re fortunate to have so many good gardens on our doorstep, The Veddw is great, it’s my favourite. I haven’t heard of Brobury House Gardens … I shall add it to the list. Thanks for the link, Cathy.

  5. joanna says:

    Your head will be full of new ideas and perspectives. Thank you for sharing these with us.
    That curly water feature in one of your last photos takes my fancy – a bit unlikely that Himself could construct something like that – so we will have to make do with rain 🙂

  6. Pauline says:

    What a fun packed few days you had, so much inspiration to take home with you! Thank you for sharing your trip with us.

  7. Anna says:

    Brian has taken the words out of my lips. I wonder what artefacts could be in the making 🙂 I’ve added a couple to my list for visits when we are next in that part of the country. Thanks Cathy.

    • Cathy says:

      Who knows?! Most of the gardens were GW 2 for 1 and it was quite a job 6juggling days and opening times and routes but the planning is part of the fun

  8. Annette says:

    I find it so hard to tear myself away from my garden at this time of year (but still had to quite a bit!) so I’m delighted to be able to join you, Cathy. I would love to see Kate’s garden, bet it’s a dream. How can you love gardens without the gardening bit? Are you a true gardener then?

    • Cathy says:

      Interesting distinction, but I know what they mean – it all merges into one for me and perhaps it is the creating that combines the garden with the gardening? Ohm and I am sorry you have had to drag yourself away from yours a lot this year

  9. Gallivanting? More like galloping! You saw so much. Amazing. I love that you plan to make your own sculptures. I think looking at other gardens, big or small, is an important part of our own gardens, there is always at least one idea or plant that we can add to our own space

  10. Heyjude says:

    I think I got here via a convoluted route starting from a comment on my blog by Annette (My Aberdeen Garden) and instead of doing what I set out to do (write a post or two) I have spent the morning trawling through garden blogs! Who knew there were so many? Not I, and I have been looking for them! Your garden is a beauty, and I also love visiting other gardens to steal ideas so thank you for the tour. Having lived in the west Midlands (Shropshire) for 5 years I have visited some of the above, but never managed to get to Bryan’s Ground which I believe is best in May when the irises are in bloom. Westonbury is different and another one in the region is Stockton-bury which is a true delight. I have links to both on my site. As I have recently moved to Cornwall and finally got a garden after 10 years without, I am looking forward to getting advice and tips from your blog.
    Jude xx

    • Cathy says:

      Hi Jude – thanks for your long comment and positive thoughts on my garden. I, and no doubt many others, came to learn about other blogs in exactly the same way way as you did 🙂 Thanks for the info on other gardens too – we had to be selective this time round as I don’t think we could have packed any more in, but we (I, really!) try and fit in gardens on our way to other places too, so they are they are for the future. You must be thrilled to have had a garden after 10 years without!

      • Heyjude says:

        Hi Cathy. I too like to look up other gardens en route to somewhere else. I think I must drive my non-gardening OH crazy! I am mostly happy with my garden, but everything grows so quickly in this warm, moist climate, I spend most of my time cutting things back!

        • Cathy says:

          The Golfer is very tolerant of these visits – and we have detours to golf courses for him as he collects golf score cards so it works both ways. Will pop over to your blog in due course

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