A June visit to Hauser & Wirth Garden in Bruton. We visited the garden soon after it was formed about 8 years ago, re-visiting did not disappoint. We were shown around the garden by our guide and then we wandered at our leisure chatting to the gardener and enjoying a coffee in the lovely surrounds. This garden was created by Piet Oudolf, from the Netherlands, and has designed the landscaping scheme for the entire site, including Oudolf Field – a large perennial meadow situated behind the gallery buildings. Carefully shaped and planted, the garden echoes the tradition of classical gardens, but the variety of species and combination of plants creates a looseness, softening the formality of its appearance. Known for his use of plants with spectacular seed heads, the garden has all year-round interest.
Our July meeting although in the Parish Hall, we were transported virtually. Helena Crouch gave an insight into the botanical treasures of the Mendip Hills from the coast at Brean Down and then eastwards through Cheddar and beyond to Frome. Helena has been recording rare plant activity for over 25 years, being county recorder for North Somerset and organises weekly walks. The slides were beautiful, and it was difficult to think the plants being shown were quite tiny.
A July to Cadenham Manor. This garden is open under the National Garden Scheme The four-acre garden was laid out in the 1950s as a formal garden around a 17th Century Wiltshire Manor house and dovecote in the French style. We explored its many rooms, divided by yew hedges and moats, looking out across ancient grasslands. The White Garden, and the Phlox walk are interspersed by rooms full of vegetables, fruit trees and cut flowers – all to be found off a spectacular avenue leading to a temple-like folly. In the bed of an old canal (Wilts and Berks) is a water garden.The garden was designed by Victoria’s grandmother, Elizabeth Blackwell between 1945 and 2000. She transformed the house, the farm and especially the garden, introducing 70 varieties of old roses. Although the roses were over it would be nice to revisit another time when they are in full bloom. The tea and cake afterwards were very welcome!