Monday, 20 December 2010

Love those "L" gardens - lush, luxuriant and luring!

A long way from London lie a number of wonderful "L" gardens that are really worth making the effort to go and see. Start with Lamorran (above), a glorious hillside garden on the Roseland Peninsula in Cornwall. This garden is quite different to others you will find in the area, because it's Italianate in style, has wonderful views over the water and is filled with interesting sculpture and statuary features. But sadly, not for the feint-hearted or anyone with a walking disability because it is on quite a steep hill and some of the paths are very narrow.
Move onto Lytes Cary, which I visited for the first time because I had seen a picture of the entrance to the house (above) and couldn't resist the temptation to go and see it for myself. This is a glorious six-acre Arts and Crafts garden with immaculate topiary and near enough to many other gardens to make it worth while making a special trip to the area so you can enjoy them all (these "other" gardens include Barrington Court, Cothay Manor, East Lambrook Manor, Hestercombe and Tintinhull).
Larmer Tree was a new discovery for me in 2011 and I'm really glad I found it! An extraordinary and beautiful garden which was created for the people to enjoy - a genuine pleasure garden - and one of the most unusual I've seen in my travels so far! It retains the stages and theatre sets that were used in its heyday to provide entertainment. A real gem, with a wonderful water garden (above). By the end of the 19th century it was attracting 44,000 visitors a year - that's higher numbers than some gardens today!
Another watery wonderland that had been on my Wish List since I started this blog a couple of years back was Longstock Park in Wiltshire (above) - the John Lewis garden that opens twice a month for different charities during the summer months, but is actually a pleasure garden for partners of the firm, who can visit whenever they like. Well worth finding out when open days are because it's a feast for the eyes, and quite different from anything else you'll see.
Leonardslee was one of the most spectacular gardens I saw this year (above) - a magical garden filled with azaleas that give a show like no other in Britain when they come into bloom in May, but sadly sold this year to a mystery buyer. Nobody knows whether the new owner will re-open to the public in 2011, but it's going to be a great loss for garden lovers if they stay closed, because this spring spectacle is truly remarkable, so fingers crossed for all of us who like to gawp at other people's gardens!

This concludes my alphabet series until the new year as I'm nearly half way through, but if the "Big Freeze" carries on and I'm stuck at home much longer, I may start on the Marvellous "M" gardens early!

  Season's Greetings to all my readers and I hope you have a warmer holiday 
than us here in the UK!

19 comments:

  1. L means we've nearly reached the halfway mark ... I've been enjoying this series immensely. I'm not all that pleased that the end is in sight. It's been terrific.

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  2. My first visit. My word! You have an awesome post. The gardens are breath taking. I stopped breathing at the calla lillys.
    Merry Christmas and happy New Year.
    yvonne
    My best friend is a Charlotte too

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  3. Leonardslee does indeed look spectacular, I do hope the new owner reopens. As I may have said before, your journeys do make me think that its time I got out and about a little more. Best wishes for the Christmas season Charlotte.

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  4. Dear Charlotte,

    it has been such a pleasure to follow your blog this year. I am so glad that I found you. Blogs like yours, really do make a difference in a gardenfreak`s life. I love your photos.

    Wishing you and all your loved ones a very merry Christmas and a happy 2011 filled with flowers, good photo-oppotunities and wonderful travel- and gardenadventures:o)

    Lots of warm greetings from cold cold Denmark,
    covered in a thick carpet of snow and ice....
    AUNTIE GREEN

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  5. Season's greetings to you Charlotte and happy garden visiting in 2011 ~ look forward to reading more about your travels :)

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  6. Charlotte,

    Some wonderful new places for me to visit when next in the area. I am especially enchanted by Larmer Tree and haven't heard of it before. I'll do my homework.

    Thanks so much for the information.

    Sharon Lovejoy Writes from Sunflower House and a Little Green Island

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  7. Thank you once again for a much needed tour!

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  8. Wow, spectacular gardens! Such Luscious green!!! My neighbor had to cancel her trip through London because of your bad weather. I hope you're staying warm :-)

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  9. You have been giving us the insights to some of the most beautifully breathtaking gardens in the world!Thank you for sharing your experience and travels..Happy holidays, Merry Xmas and Happy New Year!

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  10. Thank you all for your lovely comments and wishes. I'll be visiting many more gardens in 2011 and hope you'll enjoy the ride with me!

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  11. Dear Charlotte,

    I will really ENJOY your gardenvisits in the year new. It would be just wonderful if your gardentravels would take you to Denmark one day:o)

    AUNTIE GREEN

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  12. I promise my travels will bring me to Denmark - I love it and have friends there, so hope to visit in 2011. Happy Holidays!

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  13. Dear Charlotte, I've seen so many lush and beautiful gardens as I've toured along with you! I'm so thankful for finding your blog. Stay warm my friend and Merry Christmas. Btw, your snow shots are just magical...I have a particular fondness for gates too ;-)

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  14. I am really loving the 'L' gardens. I would love to be taking the image at Longstock Park. That looks like heaven.

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  15. You've seen some fantastic gardens! Thanks so much for sharing them. I wish you a very Happy Holiday season!

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  16. Charlotte, I'm just getting a chance to visit your blog for the first time in weeks (I just turned in my final grades for the semester yesterday), and I love your new (?) blog design. Reading all these posts sequentially has made me long to visit the UK again (it's been ten year since my last visit), and to make it a trip designed around garden visits. Perhaps I'll get to catch up with you in the US before that happens. 2010 ended up being a crazy year for me, with my mother's final illness defining the first 7 months and a particularly difficult teaching schedule defining the last few months. Next semester promises to be easier, and I have plans for visiting mid-Atlantic gardens in April and May. Let me know if that would work into your plans at all.

    Wishing you all the best for happy holidays and a fabulous new year. -Jean

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  17. I love this tour through the alphabet you are doing. I wish I could visit all these places, but your photos and descriptions will have to do for the time being. ;) Thanks for some wonderful posts here!

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  18. Yes, I love your winter design, especially the header. It's been fun reading about your alphabetical gardens. Merry Christmas!

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