OK, so January isn’t a month normally associated with visiting gardens, but Swallow Hayes is different. It’s main feature is a huge collection of Witch Hazels, more than 70 types. The day of our visit was cold – teetering on freezing point all day – and a thin mist hung low over the land made cold by the heavy overnight frost. We wrapped up warm, wandered around this garden of winter, our fingers with just enough feeling left in them to take photos.
The garden here covers just two acres but they are two packed acres. There is so much to see here in January, leaf colour and variegation, blooms with scent to delight and patterns of tree bark for the eye to capture and the fingers to explore.
Tree bark adds interest in winter gardens and here at Swallow Hayes Birch and Prunus add colour and texture.