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arboreta autumn autumn colours colours garden design garden photography gardening gardens gardens open to the public ornamental trees and shrubs outdoor sculpture sculpture trees

Autumn in an Arboretum and Afternoon Tea

We were lucky to receive a voucher for an afternoon tea from our son Jamie and daughter-in-law Sam, and of course little Arabella and decided to redeem it at a hotel down in the Cotswolds, near the village of Moreton-in-the-Marsh.

We drove down early and spent time wandering Batsford Arboretum, enjoying the colours of autumn leaves before the winds blew them from the branches. It was a dull day but the foliage glowed through the gloom. Most colour came from Acers and Liquidamber of many varieties of each. The wind had already whipped many leaves from their branches.

  

Of course autumn isn’t complete without the red, pinks, oranges and reds of berries, provided by Sorbus, Malus and here at Batsford by the unusual tree called Zanthoxylum planispinum (photo below left).

  

One area of the arboretum was strongly influenced by Japanese garden styles, complete with red painted wooden bridges.

  

While looking at this statue of Buddha we had to suddenly take refuge  in the Japanese tea house nearby from a quick but heavy shower in.

 

We only just allowed ourselves enough time to reach Charingworth Manor for our afternnon tea booked for three in the afternoon. On the journey there it began to rain slightly and the temperature dropped so we were glad to get inside this beautiful Cotswold manor house to the warm and dry. We sat to enjoy our tea close to a huge log fireplace of golden Cotswold stone.

What a great day we had with autumn foliage, an amble around an arboretum finished off in style with afternoon tea.

 

 

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architecture colours garden buildings garden design garden photography garden pools gardens gardens open to the public hardy perennials National Garden Scheme NGS ornamental trees and shrubs outdoor sculpture roses shrubs trees water in the garden Yellow Book Gardens

Miserden Park, a Gloucestershire Garden

We were journeying south towards Hampshire and searched for a place to break our journey. We were pleased to discover Miserden Park was close to the road we travelled. We expected it to be easy to find as we knew which village it was on the outskirts of but poor signage directing us firstly to the village and then to the garden itself made it difficult.

When we saw the house at Miserden we were impressed with the way the gardens around it helped it sit so comfortably in the landscape. The pale blue planting looked so good with the pale limestone of the building.

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We soon realised that this was one of those gardens which impressed with the tiny details of individual plants and colour combinations but also with the bigger pictures it presented.

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Metalwork impressed us from the imposing gates to the intimate seats.

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We loved the contrast between the formal gardens and the wilder “Robinsonian” areas. Paths mown through the long grass in these wilder areas led us to surprise plants to appreciate such as this Aesculus.

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On the paved area which surrounded the house containers planted up with gently coloured plants enhanced the colour of the stonework.

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An unusual rill garden had been created to celebrate the Millenium and a nearby conveniently positioned summer house gives visitors a good chance to rest awhile and admire it.

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A shrub border full of deep purple leaves provided a rest for the eyes after studying brighter coloured plantings.

 

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The grey stone walls of local limestone were a perfect foil for gentle coloured roses.

 

 

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One area had been developed much more recently and afforded impressive contrasts of style.

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We couldn’t really work out what this strange stonework integrated into the base of an ancient tree was all about.

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We finished our tour of the gardens at Miserden with a long slow walk along the double herbaceous borders.

 

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It is always a bonus to visit a good garden when taking a break in a journey further afield. Miserden was well worth stopping to explore.