Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Weekend Catch Up

Hello my lovelies.

Yes I know it's Tuesday and the weekend is no'but a distant memory but it's the first chance I've had to sit and upload some photos that I know you'll all enjoy seeing.  This will be a picture heavy post but I make no apology for that - I do hope you enjoy them.   :)

We spent a really lovely hour or so on Saturday afternoon with my brother and sister-in-law visiting Stone House Cottage Nursery and Gardens, near Kidderminster.

Stone Cottage Garden, is one of those places that could be described as a 'hidden gem'.  Indeed one could be forgiven for simply driving past the entrance to it, completely unawares, as although it is now sign-posted as an RHS recommendation,  it is reached by a little 'off road' track from the main road. 

Now I don't know too much about the history of the place so I'm going to link to THIS FEATURE when the garden was featured in the 'GARDEN' magazine in September 2010.  It's also been featured in Country Living magazine and in other glossy garden mags apparently, as the clippings were on show at the garden entrance. 

I have a thing about 'secret' gardens and this beautiful little place fulfilled my passion for a) being nosey(!), b) my romantic notions of fanciful images of fairies (no there weren't any but it's certainly the type of place where I KNOW they exist!!!) and c) my love of plants, gardens, trees, flowers, nature, romanticism, etc etc.   I quite liked the place - does it show?!!

Jo and I are very much kindred spirits in our adoration of anything like this. We were in our element gazing and sighing wistfully at the romantic follies and prettyfullness. (What do you mean that's not a word?!). 

Anyway - time for me to shut up rambling and show you some pics!  Enjoy!

Wisteria scrambling up the clocktower on the car parking area.

The entrance to the walled garden.

Hmm... which way shall we go?

Definitely this way!

Cow Parsley - such a delicate, frothy wild flower

Aliums.... I must plant some more of these stunning flowers for next Spring

Follies a-go-go!

Hidey places to sit and watch the fairies go by!

Jo and I weren't too impressed by Charlie's observation that it looked like a scene from The Shining!

Ah look - one of the Border Collies keeping an eye out for miscreants!

Jo and Charlie - "What's in there then?"

Is someone locked in the tower?

Jo must have gone in to investigate! She doesn't 'do' heights so probably got up to the third step!!

Don't be silly brother dear - you don't have enough hair to be playing Rapunzel!

Gasp!!  A secret door!!

I love the mysticism of forests - tut - I could have cropped the wire fencing out !!

I think this was a summer house - It's a little down at heel now but in it's day I do hope that there were some amazing parties thrown in here - well I know I would have done,  were it mine!!!

A mural of the walled garden.... Actually I'm not altogether sure that we should have been in here!  Oops!!

A view up to towards the house

An absolutely beautiful rambling rose - almost like a dog rose but such a gorgeous deep red colour it was almost burgundy.  Stunning!

Another wisteria covered folly to hide in...

and sit under wisteria confetti as the petals drifted around

We couldn't find a label identifying this tree blossom but it's scent was absolutely divine.  The seed heads give me an inkling that it's related to a magnolia

Sigh.  Just something so lovely about this!!

Thank you for posing so nicely Mr Bee!

So there you have it.  If you are in the area it's so worth £3 to get in - and probably reductions for RHS members.  It's such a quirky little place.  There are ducks and chickens and guinea fowl. Sadly the folly where the chickens live was subject to a mindless arson attack a couple of weeks ago so it isn't looking it's best right now but I do hope that it will be sorted out because it would be a shame to let it go to ruin.  We also saw a little railway track there so although I saw no evidence of the train - perhaps in the Summer months the train runs around the perimeter of the land for children to enjoy. 

See you soon!


  1. I love seeekrit gardens, makes me think of the book, which I loved as a child. Must upload my pics of Helmingham Hall

  2. Such gorgeous pics, Kim. You were right, it's a real gem and at £3 to get in - fabulous value for money.

    I do love a secret garden. There was a garden near where we used to live that Mr J and P used to peep at through its fence. It was small but perfectly formed, mature with gorgeous tiles in the walls. Lovely.....

  3. Thanks ladies - Loo I think it's that element of not quite knowing what you'll see when you peer through the fences isn't it? This garden has only been in existence really from when the owners purchased it in 1974 so it's quite an achievement really that it looks like it's been there forever.

    Poohtle - I'm dying to see your pics hun... and the Fayre ones too!! :D No pressure like!! ;)

  4. Fabulous; exactly my type of gaff. But just imagine if it had all been built in Elizabethan times!!! Some of the dodgy brick-work lets it down a tad.

  5. Oooh Kim! What a fabulous gardens :o) Thank you for taking us along with you.

  6. Fabulous gardens and what a great job with the photography. Beautiful.

  7. OMG! That was amazing and thank you, thank you for sharing it! I think you would have had to drag me out! Just beautiful and your photos are gorgeous-even with the fence.
    Just LOVED it!

  8. Hi Kim
    Thanks for popping by, its always great to meet new readers. Love your post, just my cup of tea. Must check out how far that is from me, it certainly deserves a visit. Your photos really do it proud.
    Jenny x

  9. Oh how darling, so mysterious and bursting with life!

  10. Lots of ideas for making my windswept weed patch into a drewm garden :-D

  11. A grand day out - super pictures - the murals looked real views !

  12. Thank you so much for your comments. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip around the garden :)