Friday, 15 June 2012

Hidcote Garden


Several friends from our days when we lived in Hertfordshire were holidaying in the Cotswolds this week, and they very kindly invited us to join them for dinner at their hotel one evening.
We decided to have a whole day out and renew our acquaintance with Hidcote Gardens, somewhere we have not visited for many years.
The garden was created by American horticulturalist, Lawrence Johnston during the early 1900s, and is described as one of England's great 'Arts and Crafts' gardens. Johnston was born in Paris (1871) into a wealthy American family, and was educated at home and then in 1893 at Trinity College, Cambridge University. 
The garden is in a series of outdoor 'rooms' of various characters and themes achieved by the creative use of box hedges, hornbeam, yew and stonewalls, all linked together by imaginative vistas.
Cornflower meadow
 
The Giant Lily or Cardiocrinum giganteum - I would really love one of these which I first saw about 6 years ago. They come from the Himalyas and grow to about 12 feet tall.
At the close of day, dinner with our friends at Dumbleton Hall. 

52 comments:

  1. Hello Rosemary:
    Hidcote remains for us one of our all time favourite gardens, not least for the execution of its superb design. To stand on the Cedar Lawn and look through over the small rondel, along the Red Borders, beyond the Pleached Hornbeam Allée, threough those wonderful gates to the escarpment beyond is, we feel, as near perfect as it gets in any garden. And for that, much as we love Sissinghurst, we feel Hidcote does, possibly, have an edge.

    This, as always, beautifully presented post gives a very real flavour of what this magnificent garden is like and what it is about.

    Was you dinner good?

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  2. Hello Jane & Lance - the view you describe is exceptional. Unfortunately I have not shown it in its entirety - I could not get it without someone popping into my screen, and I do like my garden views to be minus humans!!! You are correct about the escarpment being such an important feature of the garden and the gentle slopes which have been carefully but almost unnoticeably tiered leading the eye down and along.
    The dinner and the company were excellent, we had a late night journey back across the Cotswolds.

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  3. Dear Rosemary,

    what a gorgeous place to visit! I love your bright clear photographs.
    They make it somehow much closer and more real to us who haven't visit the gardens.
    ( Well, maybe in the future?...)

    Glad you enjoyed dinner with good friends : )

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    1. Dear Demie - it was a 'grand day out' in the middle of this week. A lovely garden followed by dinner with lots of old friends.
      I am pleased that you liked the photos - I have been experimenting a bit at presentation♥

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  4. Hi, Rosemary! The bright mosaic gave great impact on me and made me hurry to scroll down. And what I saw next was perfectly lovely landscape filled with beautiful green and flowers! All your photos are fascinating and I’m particular about reflection photos. The reflection of blue sky with clouds, green plants, and fountain statue is equally as compelling as the real thing. Thank you for taking us along with you to Hidcote Gardens.

    Yoko

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    1. Hello Yoko - so pleased you enjoyed Hidcote and the reflections in the pool. The day I visited there were quite a few Japanese tourists visiting too. I think it is a garden that is very popular with people from your country to visit.

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  5. Dear Rosemary,
    Your photos of the flowers in the collage are so amazing..very bright and clear.
    The gardens at Hidcote look so inviting. what a lovely day out before joining your old friends for dinner. A lovely week you have had. Its always so great to be with friends that you can relax with.
    thank you for your lovely comments.. happy weekend. val

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    1. Dear Val - yes, it was a really good day out, the sun shone, and the flowers were wonderful. It was nice to be with old friends, some of whom had not been told we were arriving, the friend who invited us didn't tell the others until 30 mins before we were due to arrive.

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  6. I don't think I could ever visit there. If I did, I'd never leave. Seriously, that place is gorgeous and amazing. I love the sculpted hedges as well as the water and architectural elements. Great photos!

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    1. Dear Marie - it is difficult for photos to do a place justice, but it is a gem of a garden. On the day we visited it was full of bird song, I think that they were happy too.

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  7. What beautiful colors and I loved the tour of the garden. What a lovely day!

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    1. Dear Lisa - glad you enjoyed touring the garden. The garden is pretty extensive and it was not possible to include all of the wonderful vistas.

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  8. Hi, Rosemary - I've read about Lawrence Johnson; I understand that he was the master of garden vistas. It would be interesting to know how many years the Hidcote Gardens were in the making. (And your collages are super!)

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    1. Mark, his mother bought Hidcote in 1907 and Lawrence Johnson then spent the next 40 years creating the garden. The garden is particularly amenable to vistas as it sits on the top of a slopping Cotswold escarpment giving very fine views over the countryside.
      The collages are mainly as a result of the helpful advice that you gave to me, so I am happy you like them.

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  9. What an exicting post. Firstly I must commend you on a spectacular job of the last photograph. The beautiful sky, the Cedars breaking up the view of the property, the sheep in the foreground, stunning, very English.
    Your first photgraph is like a sweetie shop. I don't grow but love lupins for their wonka-like qualities.
    Cardiocrinum look gorgeous. I have always been tempted although you don't often see them for sale.
    Your 'tondos' (I googled it, I knew there had to be a fancy name:)) are magnificent. I predict a trend in tondo usage in blogs from now on.
    Paul

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    1. Dear Paul - you really are very generous with your comments - thank you very much. I like your sweetie shop comment, some of the lupins had the most delightful mix of colours.
      I have never seen the Cardiocrinums for sale. Did you know that they take 7 years before they flower and then they die. Fortunately the mother bulb leaves behind a generous supply of baby bulbs.
      I am glad that you liked my 'tondos' but I think that you are the only person to notice them. I have been messing about trying to work out how I could make them and eventually got there.
      I was driving along in the car the other day, and thought that I would love to make some roundels (another renaissance word) of the photos, but did not know whether it was possible.
      Incidentally, when you mentioned about the Nigella and wondered where the Damascena part of the name derived from, I discovered that the plant was actually discovered in Damascus.

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  10. Dear Rosemary,

    The photographs you took at Hidcote look beautiful. We will be visiting at the beginning of August. Can't wait to see it! The say the garden on the other side of the road (Pashley?) is very pretty as well. Have you been there too?

    Have a lovely weekend!

    Madelief x

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    1. Dear Madelief - yes, I have been to the other garden as well. It too is very beautiful in a different kind of way. The garden is literally 4 mins walk away from Hidcote, but you have the name wrong it is called Kiftsgate. It sits on the very edge of the Cotswold escarpment and has dramatic views from the top of the garden. It is very famous for its named rose - the Kiftsgate rose. Another wonderful place to visit which is 3 miles away from these two gardens and well worth a visit is Snowshill gardens and Manor.

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  11. Hidcote was one of the very first gardens I visited in England, and it is, to this day, one of my favorites. I can spend a whole day there. Gorgeous photos, as usual! I really love your first grouping of close-ups. Rosemary, do you use a Mac to create the vignettes? Have a wonderful weekend, Loi

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    1. I am so pleased to learn that you have visited Hidcote, and do hope that these photos brought back some memories for you.
      I am not sure whether you can do the collages on a Mac, but I expect you probably can. I use the Mac to reduce my pixels, and I do the collages on PicMonkey which is free and very easy to use. However, I think when you mess around with the photos, as I have done, they do loose some of their detailed quality.
      You can get PicMonkey here:-
      http://www.picmonkey.com/

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    2. Thank you, R! I actually do not have a MAC....still using a PC. But I do want a Mac for my home office. Loi

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    3. Dear Loi - everyone I know who has MAC loves them.

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  12. What a wonderful day out - thanks for sharing. I was going to ask about the collages - thanks

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    1. Dear Susan - it was a great day out. Hope you have some fun with the collages.

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  13. Fantastic collages and thanks for taking us with you on your visit to this beautiful garden.
    Have a lovely weekend Rosemary

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    1. I am so pleased that you enjoyed seeing this garden Marijke. It is certainly somewhere rather special.

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  14. So much beauty, I think I could roam alone there for days, soaking it all in.

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    1. It is a place that can be visited many times during the seasons when it changes. It also looks wonderful in the snow.

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  15. Dear Rosemary,
    What a wonderful post. Great photos from a beautiful place.
    I would love to visit that garden and like Marie I guess I'd never leave too.
    Thanks for sharing.
    I'd no idea of the name of the beautiful lily.
    Wish you a wonderful weekend, hopefully with warm and sunny weather.
    Here it's raining and feels more like autumn.
    Mette

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    1. Dear Mette - It is definitely a place that you can return to again and again, especially during the different growing seasons. I am so pleased that you enjoyed seeing it.
      The lily is magnificent, as I mentioned I have only seen them once before, they are very rare. Sadly we have the same weather here too. June seems to be a wash out♥

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  16. Dear Rosemary
    My hands up !!!! Wonderful collage and great pictures! I am glad you had the opportunity to enjoy this day with your friends. Thanks for sharing with us. You make me my weekend and my mind .!!
    Olympia

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    1. Dear Olympia - that is so kind of you. Glad you enjoyed the collages, it was a lovely day out ending in the evening with our friends.

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  17. Hi Rosemary
    What a beautiful place! I really like the way you have portrayed the gardens, and the collage of flowers is spectacular :-)

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    1. Thanks Nat, it is a garden well worth a visit if you have not been. The flowers were so wonderful that to create a collage was the only way to do them justice.

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  18. What a glorious pageant, Rosemary :-) Just beautiful. Off to share it with everyone I can think of.

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    1. Gosh Kate - thank you so much - glad you thought the garden beautiful, which of course it is. Do visit if you haven't already.

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  19. Rosemary, what a magnificent garden. I love your circles. How did you do that? Smart phone? I am planning on getting an Iphone this month for this recent birthday. We are techie idiots just about you know. Thanks so much for your sweet comments. ALL my U. K. friends give the most well written and sweetest comments. hugs, olive

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    1. Dear Olive - I do not believe that you are a technie idiot, if it had not been for your help I would not have known what to do with the pixels.
      I did the circles with a lot of trial and error and experimenting on PicMonkey. If you would like me to try and describe how I did it - send me an email♥

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  20. Wow, this garden is incredible!!! It is so green and lush too… I love it!!!

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    1. Dear Marica - I am so pleased that you enjoyed seeing the garden. It is, as you say incredible, and took 40 years to create.

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  21. what a mazing treat for the eyes your pics! thak you for this relaxing and beautiful tour, happy weekend from tulipland:-)

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    1. Dear Jana - and thank you in return for your very kind comment, happy that you enjoyed the tour.

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  22. What a very beautiful place this is! Amazing really.
    Thanks for sharing with us. I really hope I ever get the chance to visit Great-Britain and all of its beautiful gardens. This place is on my list.
    Bye,
    Marian

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    1. Dear Marian - I do hope you can manage a visit to Hidcote sometime. There is another very beautiful garden nearby - a short walk down the country road, and several more within a few miles of each other.

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  23. What a beautiful garden and flower collage. I haven't been commenting a lot in the last few weeks because I was on holiday. I will be back soon.

    Greetings,
    Filip

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    1. The garden is very beautiful - glad you have enjoyed a great trip and that you posted some great photographic memories of it.

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  24. Hello Rosemary,
    very beautiful flowers and pictures!
    A hug

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  25. Greetings Rosemary! So sorry to have missed you, I was away at college that week, but so glad you enjoyed your visit. Your images are absolutely magnificent!

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    1. Nice to hear from you again Bertie - I asked after you at Hidcote, but was told you were away at college.
      Glad that the images have past your approval, and hope you feel I did the garden full justice.
      We were lucky as it was a sunny and pleasant day.

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  26. oh, this is lovely. it must be where hidcote lavender took it's name from. i have a great collection of it. it's such a hearty little plant. your photos are stunning!!!

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    1. Your assumption is correct about the Hidcote Lavender, and how lovely to think that you have a bit of this beautiful garden growing with you. I have it growing in my garden too, and I agree it is a hearty little plant with a lovely dark purple/blue flower.
      Glad you enjoyed the photos and thanks for visiting.

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