Showing posts from May, 2016

Peterhof - A "Great" Russian Garden created by Tzars

Peterhof (Petrodvorets) - former summer palace of Peter the Great - is one of the most popular day-trip destinations for St Petersburg visitors. Although what you see today is mostly a reconstruction, since both palace and grounds were major casualties of WWII, firstly at the hands of the German army stationed here, who did considerable damage to the palace, but additionally and ironically by Stalin, who was determined Hitler wouldn't celebrate New Year's Eve there in 1941 and repeatedly bombed the site to prevent this happening.
Today the reconstructed Peterhof is one of the most impressive gardens in Russia with its memorable collection of fountains and fine views over the Baltic Sea. The estate is actually a series of palaces and gardens, often described as the 'Russian Versailles'. The gardens are Baroque in style and were designed by a pupil of Le Notre - Jean-Baptiste Le Blond - for Peter the Great, who not only admired Versailles, but who, as creator of the Russi…

Wordless Wednesday - Gardens and green spaces in Russia

I've spent the last week in Russia, looking at gardens and green spaces and will be featuring some of them in the coming weeks. For the Summer Garden in St Petersburg, click here.

A walk in the park in St Petersburg, Russia

May is the perfect month to meander though the Summer Garden in St Petersburg, strolling first through the verdant park and ending up at the magnificent Cathedral of the Saviour of Spilled Blood.


RHS Chelsea has long been considered the jewel in the crown of flower shows worldwide and attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year. Over the years I have enjoyed some sunny sojourns while photographing the gardens and more recently braved both wind and rain to cover the stars of the show and always told the story in pictures for my worldwide readership, before the medal winners are announced. But this year I have been turned down for press accreditation on the very day that enables me to give readers a sneak preview of what's on offer, so it is with regret that I inform readers that I shall now bow out of any further coverage of RHS Chelsea, any other RHS shows here in the UK, and reviews of their gardens. But I will be covering other major garden events, both here in the UK and abroad and will be visiting some of the other venues that promote both interesting show gardens and novel ideas to the horticultural world - Chaumont, in France, is one of my favourites and I shall…