Winter gardens …

18/02/2018 § 1 Comment

Spurred on by my visit to Welford House earlier in the week, today I sauntered off to visit two local gardens, opened under the National Garden Scheme.

I had no idea this movement began in 1927 inviting garden owners to open their exceptional gardens to the public for good causes, giving people unique access to some of Britain’s most beautiful, memorable gardens.  They’ve raised over £50 million to help charities.  The bright yellow notices have sprung up this weekend, rather like early daffodils and today’s gardens were a treat.

First, it was Brandy Mount House in Alresford …


Described as ‘an informal plantsman’s garden’ I loved the beautiful Spring bulbs and lovingly planted borders and alpine gardens.  Whilst enjoying a sit down with a cuppa and a slice of excellent homemade cake (as you do), the scent of daphnes wafted through the air.


aaahhhhh – a hint of sunshine, pretty bulbs, stepping stone paths, alpine sink gardens and cake – a perfect start to a Sunday afternoon!  I came away with a Magnolia Donna – I’ve never had a magnolia but I felt like a treat and back at home, having found some internet photos, I’m really looking forward to some beautiful flowers in a couple of months’ time.

Next it was off to Bramdean House.  I’ve visited before, for the summer fete and it’s been fun to look back to that post and compare the photos, especially the borders that today were brown, with just a few valliant perennials sprouting up.

The 18th century Bramdean House and its 5 acre garden are beautiful.  It has a somewhat faded glory and I can only imagine carriages drawing up to the front entrance, through the grand gateways that are now closed as the busy traffic rushes past.  The house is protected from the road by billowing yew hedges, many yards wide.


Walking up from the old stable yard, the lawns with their mirror image borders, lead you through the immaculate walled vegetable garden to the orchard where there are beehives and an intriguing clock tower where nowadays time stands still!


Then I wandered along the grassy orchard paths and around every turn there were gateways, shelters, meandering paths, ancient brick walls and crocuses, growing, almost by accident beneath trees and shrubs, they looked as though they’ve bloomed here for hundreds of years.


I came away with 2 hellebore plants, as my afternoon visits have definitely inspired me to get going in the garden! Here’s hoping for some gentle sunshine and ssshhhhhh … do I hear a whisper that Spring might be just around the corner?

Enjoy your week


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