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Simply Beautiful -10

Sometimes two plants flower side by  side and enhance each other so much. The whole is far greater than the sum of the parts.

Complementary colours blue and yellow present great partnerships. A blue Anemone blanda teamed up with a native Primrose stops me in my tracks every day as I wander along the grass path by the Spring Garden, they are simply perfect together.

They mingle happily with old garden tool bits we dug out of the ground when we first developed our garden.

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A Walk in the Park – Attingham Park March – The Walled Garden

I shall post two reports for our March visit to Attingham Park, the first about the Walled Garden followed by one about the walk we followed, the Woodland Walk.

We walked our usual track beneath tall mature deciduous trees to take us to the walled garden. We had a detour to look at the nut walk, lined with coppiced Hazel trees and to have a look at Attingham Park’s famous old bee “building”, the Georgian Bee House. It is a very decorative wooden construction painted white and featuring fancy trellis-work.


On route we discovered naturalised Daffodils and native Celandines glowing bright golden-yellow beneath magnificent mature trees. The lawns and borders of the gardener’s cottage looked neatly prepared to celebrate Spring. A Clematis alpina displayed deep purple buds fit to burst. Species Tulips were already in flower among emerging growth of herbaceous perennials.


Approaching the gateway into the walled garden we noticed colour on the trained fruit trees, the white and pinks of blossom.


Once we were within the walls we could appreciate the extra warmth and protection afforded by the tall red-bricked walls. Leaf buds were opening on fruit bushes and canes and perennial plants were emerging strongly now the soil had some warmth to it. Bulbs were already flowering and sharing perfume.


We were sure that the gardeners, who like to garden organically, were delighted at the sight of emerging Ladybirds.

We were so pleased to find the glasshouse doors open to allow us to wander inside to study their structure and mechanisms as well as allowing us to check what the gardeners were up to.


The informal decorative and cut flower borders surrounding the glasshouses were most colourful, with Primulas and bulbs taking full advantage of the extra degree or two of warmth afforded by the walls.


A quick look into the gardeners’ bothy showed us that lots of seed potatoes were chitting nicely and we noticed that the volunteer gardeners had plenty of jobs to challenge them.

When we return next month we look forward to seeing big changes in the productive borders.

When we left the bothy we continued to walk beneath tall trees along the way marked track taking us towards the start of the Woodland Walk. This walk will be the subject of the next March Attingham Park post.






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Primroses – more unsung heroes of the spring garden

Following on from my posts about celandines and pulmonarias I am now urging us all to take more notice of primroses and all their spring-flowering cousins with which we can grace our spring borders.

The most beautiful of all are our natives, the Wild Primrose, the Oxlip and the Cowslip. Plant these in your garden and if they like you they will gently spread and wherever they ends up they will never look out-of-place. The primrose will flower earliest of the pair but the cowslips and oxlips will not be far behind. We have clumps of our natives throughout our garden and look forward with great expectations each spring.

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There are so many cultivated relatives of these natives and relatives of plants from around the world that you can have so many different forms and colours. If you are lucky you will find that some cross with the natives and produce new colour strains.

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On a recent visit to the RHS garden up in Yorkshire, Harlow Car, we found many different ones and were amazed in particular by the miniature jewels in the alpine house and in the alpine features around it. My next post will feature these.