This Week

Florence Fox

Florence Fox

We have had a visit from Florence Fox, rock star photographer of quirky events, who will be making a short film of the goings on at the Flower Garden in the summer.  She took some great shots of our lazy picnicking Thursday lunchtime, some of which we show here.  To see more of her work, go to www.florencefox.com The weather has turned ...

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Sunday visitors

Sunday visitors

Lots of lovely people came to visit us at the flower garden on Sunday as part of the Stokesay Court open gardens for the Shropshire Historic Churches Trust.  It was great to meet so many nice people and to sell them our surplus annual plants!  The special snapdragons went down particularly well, especially 'Madam Butterfly', which has tall strong stems of gorgeous frilly flowers in...

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rain to make the garden grow

rain to make the garden grow

After lots of glorious sunshine, two days of rain to make everything grow.  The pink clematis montana is in full flower now and sends wafts of perfume from the warm south facing wall to which it clings.  Barney is cursing because there are so many plants he has to make stakes for, all rushing up with a sudden whoosh of enthusiastic growth.  The duck hatched two  ducklings,...

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bees buzz

bees buzz

Today has been wonderfully warm and sunny and with a gentle breeze, just perfect.  It seems as though all the plants have grown overnight, and the alstromeria seems to have doubled in size over the last two months - watch out, neighbouring plants!  We had a visit from a very promising and capable horticulture student, Sophie Lewis, who brought us delicious cakes - which we decorated...

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dainty buttonholes

dainty buttonholes

We've been very lucky this week to have had the help of the very excellent Alex Law, who has been  busily battling weeds, constructing sweet pea supports and conducting many other tasks with great competence, as well as being jolly good company and making us both feel that the work will be done, hooray!  What a difference an extra pair of hands makes.  New beds have been prepared...

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tulips!

tulips!

Tulip season is well underway now and it is a great big thrill to be harvesting such lovely, exotic, unreal-seeming blooms.  However, since we haven't planted any new bulbs for a few years now, our stocks are dwindling, and I am spending many happy hours pouring over bulb catalogues selecting the varieties we will plant in the autumn for picking next year.  There are some so beautiful...

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Walcot Hall wedding fair

Walcot Hall wedding fair

It was a huge treat for us to spend the day at beautiful Walcot Hall, with its elegant turquoise ball room, kooky quirky decoration and magical gardens, to display our flowers to couples who were planning their weddings.  We loved talking about flowers of course, but it was also lots of fun to meet so many creative and imaginative people on the other stands.  We will look forward to...

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elegant photoshoot

elegant photoshoot

This week we arranged garden flowers to decorate a beautiful big house for a magazine photoshoot. Ferney Hall has been deliciously decorated by its owner, Henri Fitzwilliam Lay, and it was a huge treat to find creative things to do with our flowers to set off the elegant, sometimes quirky interiors.  We used masses of hydrangeas, dahlias, jars of sweets and tumbled bowls...

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harvest time

harvest time

All around us farmers have been busy harvesting, and the fields are striped and neat.  Wasps, bees and flies swamp the blackberries on our east-facing wall.  Seed heads become interesting; grasses mature, hydrangeas burnish and leaves turn.  We pick lots of airy cosmos and mix it with gypsophila, snapdragons, zinnias and michaelmas daisies.  We harvest yellow-stemmed alder...

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dahlias and fog

dahlias and fog

This morning we woke up to find a thick, heavy blanket of fog muffling the valley, and halting the noise of the combine harvesters.  Eerie stillness.  The fog has lasted for the whole day, and it has felt as though all the world is staying indoors until it lifts.  Autumn is definitely here now, and the dahlias blaze triumphantly through it, softened in our arrangements with...

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