Category Archives: spring flowers

Back in the driving seat



A year ago I put in an offer on a new place to live. I won the bid and bought myself a wreck of a home that has taken this long to make  habitable.  It has taken a whole year out of my gardening life and blog to move and put down roots in a new home..Finally I feel like I have arrived.

I have continued to garden during the year but my heart has been elsewhere. Naturally, I have focused on interiors rather than exteriors. When you don’t have a bathroom or kitchen your priorities change..    Gardening,  however, has kept me grounded during this transient period of my life, such a therapeutic profession.

My heart lies with both Architecture and Horticulture and  marrying of the two. The first most often inspired by the second.  I have moved into a Georgian property where the proportions and details within are so carefully considered they can only have been inspired by the Golden Ratio (The golden ratio appears in some patterns in nature, including the spiral arrangement of leaves and other plant parts.)

So I return at the best time of year for any British Gardener – Spring! Heralded by the flowering of my favourite Lily.. Zantedeshia

They grow well in damp conditions.  In fact they can grow in shallow water as a marginal plant..

So, hello again to all my fellow gardeners.. here’s to another fabulous year in the garden 🙂

Another piece of heaven…

I wish I could share my senses with you this week. The scent as I walk from one area to another is just bucolic. The vistas and the detail are both charming and delightful and the new foliage, fresh and soft to the touch.

The plants contributing to that fresh odorous air are:


Hawthorn (Cretagus)


In one garden there are 3 different Wisterias, each with their own charms…


IMG_3418 IMG_3425


This one on the pergola is so gorgeous to walk through.  Long ghostly racemes of white, highly perfumed flowers. Perhaps my favourite?

Then there is this lilac -coloured one,  with the same delicate but slightly shorter racemes,  against the front wall of the house:





And then there is the bruiser with its much larger flowers and blousie appearance where the leaves just won’t let the flowers steal the show



but it makes a fabulous hedge.

Here is the Hawthorn, hiding in another hedge



and the other- out and proud (and pruned this year so looks even better)



both also contributing to the perfumed air.

Sometimes I wish I didn’t have to work – just waft around instead….

Are your Bluebells delicate English or Spanish thugs?



The Spanish bluebells are often found growing in our gardens and the English  variety, the native bluebell, on common land, verges and mainly in

English bluebells

English bluebells


There are very noticeable differences.

1. The colour and size of the bells. The English flowers are generally a darker hue, smaller and more refined, with curlier tips.

2. The stems of the English bluebell are thinner allowing the top few bells to gently arch over.

3. The strap like leaves are much narrower and less numerous on the  English variety.

4. The white fleshy bulbs of the Spanish bluebells can be perfect balls the size of a large pickled onion or oddly shaped like a spring onion or a mini  butternut squash. The Enlish bluebell bulbs are more the size of silverskin onions.

5. Finally the beautiful and distinctive scent of the English bluebell.

The Spanish ones don’t smell.

(You may well come across hybrids that are just there to confuse you!)

Of course we all know which one we like best!

Of course we all know which one we like best!