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garden arches garden design garden photography gardening gardens gardens open to the public grasses ornamental grasses ornamental trees and shrubs outdoor sculpture RHS

Returning from Cornwall – Part 1 – RHS Rosemore

We like to enjoy a few extra visits on our way back from any holiday we go on to extend our enjoyment, so we tend to book hotels partway back. On our way back from our Cornwall holiday we stopped off at a hotel in Devon so that we could visit RHS Garden Rosemore.

We try to visit all the RHS gardens every year if we can, so we know them well and tend to enjoy them at different times of the year. An early autumn visit to Rosemore was going to be a real treat. It is a garden of two halves, the newer section developed from scratch by the RHS and the older original garden donated to them.

The beauty of this garden is its overall design which can be discovered by exploring its series of differently themed rooms joined with walks across grass areas, through woodland and even under a road via a tunnel.

My photos show some of our favourite plant combinations.

      

Trees feature in several favourite plant communities which really appealed to us. They add strength, texture and structure to any border. We use trees in many of our borders at home in our Avocet patch.

  

Dahlias and roses were particularly colourful when we visited

    

Sometimes added interest can be achieved by including cameos and views, pieces of sculpture, arches, pergolas, garden buildings of all sorts or other features.

       

The involvement of ornamental grasses in garden borders can add so much if carefully matched to their partners. Light catches their seed heads, they wave about with just the slighest of winds and softness of their textures adds touch to the mix of border interest.

            

I shall finish with a set of three photos that illustrate the quality of planting and gardening work at RHS Rosemore, a truly great garden full of interest and ideas for us all to take home with us.

  

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garden buildings garden design garden furniture garden photography garden seating gardening gardens open to the public

Are you sitting comfortably? Part 9 of a very occasional series.

So here we are back in Devon to share more garden seats with you. In this collection of seats found and tested on our travels we will share with you those we discovered at the RHS garden at Rosemoor.

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When at Rosemoor this February we were delighted that our day coincided with an exhibition of outdoor sculpture. At times it was hard to tell if a garden seat was a piece of sculpture or if a piece of sculpture was a seat.

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This seat with its carved ends all made from wood from the same tree was a great place for its two owls to settle. It lived beneath an iron framed arch which would be clothed in climbing plants a few months hence. Close up the carved creatures were so full of character.

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We were both amused and amazed when we spotted this comfy looking armchair from a across a wide garden border. Closer to we realised it had been created from handmade bricks, joined together by silicone.

The wooden seat in the photo alongside the armchair was home to a Buddah carved from a single piece of wood joined to a bench of the same species of tree. It gave out a deep feeling of piece.

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Sometimes a seat can be a perch for a photographer. In this case our friend Pip was getting close to a spout of water pouring from the stone wall. Look closely at the picture alongside and you will see that a scarecrow is sitting comfortably with his picnic by his side and his crop of pumpkins piled close by.

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Often garden seats have protection around them to protect the resting gardeners or visitors from the wind and rain. In the photos below wooden posts provide the protection.

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Sometimes the simplest designs work best. These two seats are beautifully designed and crafted and are so simple in their design and construction.

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Other seats sit beautifully within their surrounds looking comfortable and full of belonging.

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Seats can be works of art in themselves and then they really do become pieces of sculpture.

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This is a very ordinary garden bench which is very common in our gardens, but the placement of an old green lawn roller gives it character and invites visitors to sit down and enjoy the beauty of this garden artifact.

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The best of seats on wet days are those under cover, in this case the seat is enveloped beneath a thatched cottage-style arbour overlooking the herb garden. Here you can appreciate the sights and scents in front of you.

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Seats can be made special because they have special purposes, to tell stories from or to enjoy a good swing on.

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Where Part 10 of this very occasional series will send us we must wait and see!

 

 

 

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flowering bulbs garden design garden photography gardening gardens gardens open to the public ornamental trees and shrubs spring bulbs trees Winter Gardening winter gardens woodland woodlands

A Garden in Winter – RHS Rosemoor – Part 2

We continued our tour of the RHS Rosemoor Garden as we passed under the underpass which led us to the original gardens now called Lady Anne’s Garden. As we left the tunnel and regained daylight, albeit rather dull, we heard the sound of water falling. A narrow ribbon of white water was falling down a huge rock face created from large stones. A white stemmed birch close to it matched it perfectly. Bamboos enjoyed the damp atmosphere here and appeared very much at home.

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The damp atmosphere also meant that any trees growing here were home to algae and mosses giving their trunks and stems unusual textures and colours.

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As we followed gravel paths towards Lady Anne’s house we were interested to see many areas of new planting, with young plants growing in much improved soil.

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Within these new areas of planting we were attracted to a small shrub with tiny delicate flowers. We didn’t recognise it but we were lucky as it had a label to help us. It was a Correa “Ivory Bells”. We grow a Correa at our garden in Shropshire but we never get them to flower. After seeing these little beauties we certainly wished we could!

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The path we were following took us slowly uphill where we followed a path half way up the slope on the edge of a the garden within the woodland. The damp atmosphere here with its dappled shade gave a home to some special plants. This rich blue flowered Primula was so delicate that its stems looked too fragile to hold up the flowers. We didn’t recognise it but once again there was a label to come to our rescue – it informed us that its name was Primula “John Fielding”.

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The habitat here encouraged mosses and ferns to grow profusely. Some plants even manage to get a foothold on a flight of stone steps.

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Perewinkles or Vincas are very common plants and often too invasive for smaller gardens, but this one attracted us and encouraged us to take a closer look at its delicate white flowers.

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Small flowering bulbs brughtened up the dull semi-shade along the woodland edge.

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We found another plant that presented another mystery. We recognised the beautiful mahogany coloured buds of this Salix so looked close up and studied its label when we discovered it to be Salix fargessii. A few steps further another young shrub looked very similar but close up we noticed subtle differences. This we discovered, once again by reading the label, was Salix moupinensis, a willow we had never heard of. We must now do some research to see which is most worthwhile to add to our garden. A good gardener never stops learning!

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I shall finish with a lovely winter shrub, Sarcoccoca which displays its black berries and its white flowers at the same time and in addition it has a rich deep scent.

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So RHS Rosemoor Garden in winter proved itself to be as good as at any other season, the sign of a very good garden. We discovered new plants and enjoyed the scents and sights of so many good plantings. The Winter Garden and the Foliage Garden were the stars of the show just as we expected. As I often say after visiting a garden, we will be back!

 

 

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garden photography gardening ornamental trees and shrubs photography RHS shrubs trees

Who needs flowers when foliage will do?

You will be glad to know this is a rhetorical question. If asked to find an answer it would be a simple response – we all do! But, on a recent visit to the Royal Horticultural Society’s garden in Devon, the wonderful Rosemoor, I took this collection of photographs featuring foliage with occasional interesting bark. Not a flower in sight.