The photos I took last year are quite different to the photos I took on our most recent visit, they show the spectacular views from the garden, you can see last years photographs here.
Last year I went on my own, Hugo was busy, but this year we went together, en famille, with the doggies. I was so looking forward to this return visit, and sharing it with Hugo. Not all gardens welcome visitors taking their dogs, but surprisingly, quite a few do. We're always very careful to check on the Open Garden website, to see if dogs are allowed. If they aren't, it isn't a big deal, we just leave them at home, or with their Auntie Anne. This garden had nothing about dogs not being allowed, and Hugo double checked. So it was with some dismay that on walking up the drive to this house, the man who owned the house marched up to us, and I really mean MARCHED, and informed us in quite an aggressive tone that dogs are not allowed in his garden. Well, we did say that we'd checked the website, and there was nothing to say dogs are not allowed, whereupon he insisted that there was. We remonstrated that honestly, if there had been, we would have left the dogs at home. So he strode, or marched, over to his desk, leafed through the Open gardens booklet, and then let out an "OH!" And admitted that nothing was there to say dogs aren't allowed. At this point, his Mother-in-Law stepped in and tried to smooth things over. She would take the dogs no trouble at all, they couldn't be left in our car because it was a hot day, and she asked Mr. Officious if she could walk them across the yard, to which he did not look pleased, infact seemed very unwilling. We ended up tying them to the desk, paying our entrance fee, and heading straight for a cup of tea, and cake.
Whilst we were sitting eating the delicious cake (and this was the best we've ever had at an open garden, the food was better than delicious!), the wife of Mr. Officious came over to us and apologised profusely, said we could have the dogs in the garden, and generally made us feel much better. Infact she was really very lovely, and was worried that they had neglected to state there was no disabled access, as well as no dogs, in the info on their garden.
But you know what? It was difficult to enjoy the garden after that initial little encounter. We felt very ill at ease. These Open gardens are meant to be relaxing and enjoyable and happy occasions. We left the dogs tied up at the desk, and could hear Douglas crying to be with us, which was a bit embarrassing. Hugo ended up carrying him around in his bag, whilst leaving Ellie tied up. It was all a bit ridiculous really. I did manage to have a quick wander round the garden, feeling uncomfortable, but enjoying the beauty of the garden, and it really is fabulous, I love it.
Let's have a closer look shall we..............
Although this Rose is more puple in colour it's called "Rhapsody in Blue", from David Austin, you can find it here. I've had a Rose die on me in one of my pots, so this could be a contender as its replacement.
So there we go, a beautiful garden don't you think? I hope you enjoyed your little saunter through the garden....................... Have a lovely weekend! Love Vanessa xxx