Open Gardens

Jo’s Monday walk : Coverham Abbey

Coverham Abbey lies on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales in a serene and beautiful spot.  This 13th century former monastery was home to the Norbertines, but was badly damaged in an attack by the Scots in 1331.  Despite this monks remained in residence until 1536, when the abbey was dissolved and converted to a private residence.   In the 18oos Coverham Abbey House was constructed, incorporating some of the monastic features.  The original gatehouse partially survives, along with church ruins around which the garden has been sympathetically designed.

The drive swerves around to a grand entrance, and there you are, looking through the ruins of the church.

The charming knot garden was designed in 2003, but based on a  simple knot drawing in a locally discovered book dating back to 1484.

Not sure what more to expect, you round the corner to be confronted with a pair of carved stone effigies.  The knights are thought to be likenesses of the sons of Helewisia, the foundress of the abbey.

Beyond these, a sequence of delightful garden rooms, with a backdrop of sheep and fields.  A ‘faux’ wall divides opinion.  I quite like it, but my designer husband shakes his head in disapproval.

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Guarding the front of the house, two slender, alert hounds, nose deep in a thrilling concoction of cosmos and tobacco plants.

And around the corner, dining ‘al fresco’, with a colourful touch, and the most perfect of views.

Did you spot the old gatehouse, over the fence, or were you too bedazzled by the sunflowers? They were the most spectacular shades!

I’m going to finish with a flourish, because I like to.  Beyond that ‘faux’ wall lies a vegetable garden with an old conservatory.  Remember my dahlias from Six word Saturday?  I found a few more!

Not too much walking involved this week because it’s a garden visit, but there are ample opportunities in the surrounding hills and vales.  My visit was through the Open Gardens scheme, and there you’ll find all the details you need.

I don’t know if you’ve been counting squares lately?  I needed another 9 to take me to the end of September, and I believe I’ve exceeded that.  Go and have fun with Becky!  She’s loving Square in September.

Just got time to thank you all for your wonderful contributions and support.  Please do find time to read these if you can!  You may make some new friends.  I’m going to pop the kettle on now.  Join me next week?  Details are on my Jo’s Monday walk page.

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First this week, I’d like to introduce you to a lady called Candy.  Please do say hello :

A circular walk around Le Quillio

You know I love a marina!  Come and join Violet for a lovely little stroll :

Following the PE&NS RR!

Big, beautiful Wyoming skies from Janet!  How’s this for a sunset?

End of day

Liesbet continues to explore the neighbourhood.  This week it’s down New Mexico way :

Day Trips around Santa Fe, NM – Los Alamos

Jackie’s always ‘full of beans’, it seems :

Cowboy beans

Poor Ann Christine!  Loaded with cold and now the computer crashes.  She needs a soft landing place :

Can I please come in for a crash landing…

Kathrin takes us 2,000ft up to look down on sunny California :

Mission Peak Hike

Have you met the Rambling Wombat?

Bangalley Head Walk

Denzil’s spoiling us this week.  Choice of ten!

10 Woodland Walks

Here’s a lady you all know and love- it’s Jude, of course!

Yorkshire Sculpture Park : Part One

A favourite lady in a favourite city- Becky with some superb views :

Discovering Porto’s panoramic views

And let’s not forget one of my favourite gents.  I’m pretty sure Drake is not a vertigo sufferer :

High line

Surf’s up over at Woolly’s and he’s captured some great shots :

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I’ve always had a soft spot for the Italian Lakes.  Find a little peace and sanctuary there with Mari :

Lake Orta’s Walk of Silence & Meditation

Just made it this week!  So many flowers!  Hope you enjoyed it, and have a great week everybody.

 

Six word Saturday

Seven on Saturday, or just six?

The last one’s a bit of a tease but I know you like cake!  I glean my flower shots from all sorts of places- our own garden, the odd bouquet, and often from Open Gardens on a Sunday afternoon. One Sunday there was a raffle for the cake above.  I didn’t win, but I got the shot.

The current extravaganza of flowers is Becky’s fault.  She started me off with Square in September, I responded with 7 , and now I can’t seem to stop!  Join in, if you like, but don’t forget to share six words with Debbie.  And have a great weekend!

Six word Saturday

I need to make some changes

Since my very first blog post it has been a point of honour with me to return all visits to my blog.  If people are kind enough to come to mine, then I feel I ought to reciprocate.  It’s common good manners, and by doing so I have met some wonderful people.  Unfortunately it has reached a level where the blog has a tendency to run my life instead of the reverse.

I’m not ready to relinquish the good friends that I’ve made, but I need a bit more leeway.  If you leave a comment, I will always respond, and I will always return the visit.  If you simply ‘like’ a post I can no longer guarantee to call on you.  I realise that this means that I may miss out on some great newcomers.  I can only hope they will stop to chat.

You might notice that I have adjusted my Comments box too.  No need to scroll down and down to leave your comment, but if you want to read the previous ones just click on ‘older comments’.

I know I’m far in excess of my six words this week, but I just had to get this off my chest.  The flowers are from an Open Garden event I attended in the Yorkshire village of Stanghow last weekend.  Off you go now to visit Debbie.  And have a great weekend!

A sequence for Sue

I don’t generally do requests, but when a lovely lady asks it would be churlish to refuse.  Our capricious English weather has produced wonderful gardens this year, as you might have seen in my Open Gardens walk this week.  There’s currently a bee fest going on in my own garden, where the foxgloves are rampant.  An oriental poppy, planted last year, has just decided to swirl its skirts and join the party.

A fan of faded glory and all things derelict, when I mentioned it Sue surprised me by saying ‘I love pink oriental poppies.  Take a photo for me!’  So here we are.  I’m easing off the brake pedal a bit this week.  There won’t be a Six Word Saturday from me as I’ll be in Nottingham, enjoying my daughter’s company.  Before I go I’ll schedule a walk for next Monday, and catch up with you as soon as I can.  Enjoy the sunshine!

Jo’s Monday walk : Little Ouseburn Open Gardens

During the Summer months I like to visit an Open Garden or two, if I get the chance.  The promise of a whole village in an area I know not at all was simply too good to miss.  Situated just 5 miles from Boroughbridge in Yorkshire, Little Ouseburn was ripe for exploring.

It wasn’t an especially nice day, weatherwise, but at least it was dry.  A field had been set aside for parking and a minibus was available to transport you through the village- helpful for the less mobile as it proved to be an extremely long village, but an easy walk for the fit.  A £5 donation to the village charity bought you a map and details of participating gardens.  Time to head for the bridge!

Beneath the bridge flowed a little stream.  A connection to the River Ouse, I wondered?  But before I could speculate more I came upon the Holy Trinity Church and its mausoleum.  A Grade 1 listed building, I was charmed by the interior.  Maps and newspaper articles were laid out, detailing the history of the village.  An exhibition of lace making was taking place, and the ladies were more than happy to chat about their accomplishments.

In an alcove, steps mounted precariously to the bell ringers hideaway.  It brought to mind Bath Abbey and my ascent of the tower.  It was quite hard to tear myself away from the church, but there were 9 gardens to visit.  Over a field and a right turn brought you onto the main street of the village. Ever wanted a cottage with roses around the door?

Opposite the village hall, where you could partake of everything from a pot of tea to a three course Sunday lunch, delightful Plantation Cottage.

A tumble of clematis were the star of the show, while stately lilies looked on.  The lady of the house relaxed on the patio with her toddler, keeping a wary eye on the clouds.  Back on the street there were floral distractions aplenty.

Broadlands Bungalow delivered a stunning iris or three, an array of coleums and a confusion of wisteria, poppies and a sparkling rhododendron.

At Broadlands Farm a tea party was in full swing on the back lawn.  I couldn’t possibly be a party pooper but I can’t show you the evidence.  It was a little tricky balancing the tray and eating the cake.  In fact, apart from the chirpy robin at the beginning of the post, I took very few photos there.

I looked wistfully toward the book stall in the doorway of The Old Chapel, but time was pressing on. Orchard House next, for a lovely old stone wall with alliums, more, sumptuous irises and beautifully burgeoning peonies.

The village green had a plant stall, BBQ, icecream and cupcakes.  Nobody was going home hungry!  At the very far end of the village, Hazel House had a modern garden, with a sunken circular dining area.

Broomfield Cottage had bags of personality and a very friendly owner.  A tree surgeon by trade, he sat feeding his log burner, happy to chat about his collection of rare trees and his vegetable garden.

Paddock Cottage had a rather Zen feel and a number of metal sculptures, the aspect to the rear of lawn tennis courts and open countryside.

Just two to go, at Hill Top Cottage the lawn is sheltered by a scintillation of colourful shrubs, some of my favourites.

Lastly, the ‘big’ house, The Old Granary.  Approached by an imposing drive, it had the feel of a grande dame.  An ultra modern extension had been added and a hedge of pleached horn beams. Not really my cup of tea, but then, I wasn’t invited in.

Value for money and a good afternoon out?  I think so.  I almost forgot to tell you that the name Little Ouseburn does have associations with the River Ouse.  The original source of the Ouse is marked by a stone in the neighbouring village of Great Ouseburn.

Visit Little Ouseburn Open Gardens for details of how to get there.  The homeward jouney I found intriguing because we crossed the toll bridge at Aldwark, at a cost of 40p!  I didn’t even know it existed till then, but there’s a neat little story about the ticket collector here.

Dashing around trying to fit all the walks in this morning!  There are heaps and some wonderful ones, so please try to visit as many as you can. Many thanks to you all!  Details of how to join me are over on my Jo’s Monday walk page.   Definitely time for a cuppa now!

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We all need a weekly smile, don’t we?  74!  That’s more than a year of smiling.  Thanks, Lady Lee!

Weekly Smile 74 

Miriam can always find words of encouragement, even in troubled times :

Music in the Air

I remember having mottoes on the wall, in the ‘good old days’.  So does Jackie!

Toronto Textile Museum

Drake has both feet on the ground this week, but there’s magic in the air :

Completely down on earth

Please go and meet Sheri, and learn a little more about Vancouver :

A Walking Tour of Vancouver’s Hidden Past

Dawn has been lingering by some lovely windows this month.  Don’t forget her challenge!

A Lingering Look at Windows- June Bonus Week

Amanda takes us back in time, in Norway :

Roros – A Walk back in ‘Mine’

Join Jolandi in the Spanish mountains- it looks blissful!

Walking in The Alpujarras

Or how about the little known Jura area of France, with Food is Travel?

The trail of the perched cat in Dole, France

Wonderful memories of a city I love, brought back to life for me by Becky :

Porto – a walking city

While Carol solves a mystery or two in the Lake District :

What the Devil’s Going On?

Beautiful blooms from Susan, in New York City :

Central Park’s Conservatory Garden in the Spring

And a fabulous seven-arched bridge in the company of Eunice :

Roaming round Rivington

Ending on an absolute high with a garden post that puts mine to shame.  Stunning work, Jude!

Garden Portrait :  Dartington Hall

Phew!  Just about made it this week!  Thanks again everybody.  Take good care and I’ll see you soon.

Scampston Walled Garden

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2016 marks the 300th anniversary of landscape artist Lancelot “Capability” Brown, whose designs changed the face of of 18th century England. Born in Northumberland in 1716, he learnt the skills of horticulture and husbandry from the age of 16, as an apprentice on the Wallington estate.  His vision was extraordinary and over the course of 40 years he moved gardens away from formal design to a style that is unmistakably his.

Brown persuaded the rich and famous to invest in landscapes which were beautiful, productive, and would take a century to mature. He designed on an immense scale, moving hills and making flowing lakes that resembled artificial rivers.  His work frequently produced an Arcadian idyll.  Sadly I have never visited Stowe in Buckinghamshire, his best known work, but he was involved in the design of over 250 sites throughout the UK.

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Scampston Hall in North Yorkshire sits beside the busy A64 road.  Wandering serenely across the estate you might never know.  A lazy sheep or two blink, and turn their backs.  The grounds at Scampston were redesigned by Capability in the 1770’s.  They bear all the hallmarks of his work.  A ‘ha ha’, or sunken fence, to confuse the eye, carefully planted trees and an expansive lake that resembles a river running off into infinity.

Oddly enough, I didn’t come to Scampston in search of the Palladian Bridge, but I think that Paula might like it for her Traces of the past.  The lure of the Walled Garden is the ‘new European garden style’, designed in 1999 by Piet Oudolf.  1999 no longer feels new but I did find enchantment in the drifts of Molinia grass.  Here is a small sample of what you might find.

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There’s much more, of course.  You can do some hedge trimming, or even have a cream tea.

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But you can’t beat Capability and a few Marsh Marigolds, can you?

I’m not sure if Scampston Walled Garden fits with Jude’s Garden Challenge, but I know she’ll like it.  That’s reason enough, isn’t it?

Jo’s Monday walk : Burton Agnes

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I promised you a gentle stroll this week, far from the bustle of the city.  Burton Agnes, in East Yorkshire, will deliver in spades.  I can find you a bench or two to loiter on, and maybe a game of chess or snakes and ladders.  Too taxing?  You can do what I did, and simply stand and smile.

There’s much to smile about at this Elizabethan stately home.  The elegant facade looks over a sweeping expanse of the Yorkshire wolds, but the owners have retained a sense of playfulness in the gardens.  They are a joy to behold.

When I was there they were setting up a grand marquee for the July jazz event.  The weather was steamy, as it rarely is in England, and the ice cream vendor was in full flow.  Or should I say scoop?

You’ll know by now that I have a thing for water lilies and reflective surfaces.  I could have played all day.

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Gryphons, lions, statuary, all come as standard in these formal gardens.

But come on!  We’ve mosaics and a rose garden yet to explore.

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Can you see what lies beyond the rose arbour?  Anyone for chess?  Or draughts?  Maybe the ladies would be better at snakes and ladders.

The rooms lead one to another, with tantalising glimpses of distraction.  The reflections soon entrance me all over again.

The roses smell wonderful and I bury my nose deep into their luscious beauty.

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‘I’ve found an elephant’, says the other half.  Really? And a very endearing creature he is too.

It’s such a delightful garden, with so many aspects.  Do you remember the wire mesh gardener tending his veg?  He’s here too.

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I believe there’s an Open Day for charity, so I can join Jude’s Garden Challenge this month.  I expect she’ll be disappointed there’s no cake, but I have a good reason.  This was the second garden we visited that day and we’d already eaten.  It was quite a long way from home, but well worth the journey.  I’ll show you the other garden soon.  That was a water lily bonanza!

A closer look at these gardens and instructions on how to get there are on the website.   I’m off to put the kettle on for breakfast.

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Many thanks to all of you for being such loyal supporters.  Every week I’m delighted by the contributions you make to my walks.  If you’d like to join me and haven’t done so it’s easy enough.  The details are on my Jo’s Monday walk page.  Just click on the logo above.  If I spot a good walk when I’m reading posts, I’ll simply ask if I can include it.  We have some great ones again this week.

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Starting with some beautiful gardens from Lady Lee :

Packwood Gardens

Cathy takes us to a stately home in the US, as well as it’s lovely garden :

Winterthur Museum, garden & library : a Delaware country estate

I’m discovering that Jackie is rather fond of history!

A history lesson

A hot, prickly walk from Ana.  And keep an eye out for rattlers!  Heavens!

The trail to Gorman Falls at Colorado Bend State Park

Liesbet uses camping as a means to an end- ‘roaming about’, of course :

The Art of Being Flexible (and Realistic)

I always like something a bit different in my walks.  How about this one?  Thanks, Shazza!

Llama Trekking in the Lakes

A great one for the bird watchers from Denzil this week (paying attention Becky?) :

Het Zwin Nature Park on the Belgian Coast

This is a country I’ve always wanted to visit, and a very beautiful post from Maris Travels :

Walking in the Japanese Alps

The Pyrenees are equally beautiful, especially if you’re with my good friend Drake :

A bit higher level of walking

Warsaw street life and a fantasy of umbrellas – it’s Meg, of course!

Vignettes from a morning walk-6

Meet newcomer to my walks, Stephanie and the crew of S.V. Cambria, with a bit of a mystery :

A Walk on the Wild Side/Downtown Ocean Falls

Yvette embraces summer with her usual enthusiasm, and beautiful Crepe Myrtle :

Street Shots (#summer2016 a to z Letter S) summer walk with Jo

Come and be nosy with Susan (and me) while we look over a few fences :

Walking Cherbourg, France

Some people keep on dangling serious temptation my way.  You know who you are, Carol!

A Morning in Port Douglas

Becky and birds are synonymous, aren’t they?  Even in Lymington, it seems :

Didn’t get very far because of the birdies

That’s it for another week.  I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I did.  Now, where can I take you next week?  Take care till then.