Once a year, on the second Saturday of June, my garden is open as part of our local summer festival. I used to open it under the ‘Yellow Book’ scheme as well, but this isn’t really a garden visiting part of the world, and the extra numbers weren’t really worth the effort. Besides, I like people to enjoy the garden without having to pay.
The forecast for Saturday is bad, as usual, but it isn’t raining today, so I thought I would run a virtual tour…
We start at the herbaceous border: It’s a late year, so it’s not at its best yet, with the big oriental poppies only just starting, and the black iris chrysographes yet to make an impact. But the plants have grown enough to hide my beech framework – so that’s one good thing. At the end of the path, the euphorbia ‘Wallenberg’s glorie’ is not quite as yellow as it will be, while the iris siberica ‘Perry’s Blue’ , which should be a spectacular endstop, appears to have only one flower this year. The slugs must have got the rest…
Turning right, we reach the steps down to the lawn. I see the gardener has left the tractor out again. I apologise. I shall dock his wages.
Half way down, we shall pause to admire geranium ‘Mayflower’ – blooming in June. …
Looking back up from the bottom, you can see my peat walls to the right, with gentians and primulas, and a lurid orange broom, which is supposed to hide the tangle of the lonicera syringantha behind it.
As we walk down the lawn towards the ruin, there is a patch of lupins flowering on the bank. They grow more or less wild in Scotland, but don’t spread here, because they are too busy battling the mice.
Here’s the ruined sawmill and my scree bed, looking quite colourful, though I say so myself. (If at a slightly odd angle)
Just beyond, to the left, there’s a patch of mossy grass where you can stand and inhale the scent of the yellow azaleas – inimitable and intoxicating.
Round the corner we find the Pictish stone, and what should be a flourishing bed of blue poppies set against the floating white blossoms of the rubus tridel behind. The poppies have not had a good year, and the rubus was so frosted that it refused to start leafing up until May -so no flowers. Not a pretty sight. Better turn to your right.
Here at least there’s a bit of colour, although the primula pulvurentula need to get their flowers bulked up a bit. I don’t think the buds enjoyed being covered in mud when they were submerged in the flood.
Up the steps from the pond, we come to what I am informed is my ‘creek’. It’s much changed from its bare Februrary appearance, with all the primulas that grow in its margins just coming into flower. If you will excuse me, we’ll just pop back in time a little so you can see what I mean…
Sorry about that. To continue, before going up the hill, glance to the right….
And so we emerge from behind the ruin, past a rather stunted rhododendron decorum, and return towards the house. That brings us to the end of the tour. Exhausting things, virtual tours, especially hanging around waiting for the pictures to upload. Still, there are cakes and teas for sale at the community hall… See you next year.