I've been expecting you

I know I am quite predictable, so to those who know me the subject of this post will be no surprise.  In previous posts I have mentioned that one thing that guarantees a plant a place in my garden is if it has some sort of association for me.  This association might be because it reminds me of someone, or of a time or a place.
I have blogged before about Portmeirion, my favourite place on earth, and plants that remind me of there are obviously very welcome.  I still mourn that the nursery that used to be based at Portmeirion has not re-opened.  Buying plants from there was my regular end of holiday treat.  Recently David Austin launched the Susan Williams Ellis rose.  Susan Williams Ellis (1918 - 2007) was the daughter of Clough Williams Ellis the creator of Portmeirion and general all round brilliant architect.  Her mother was the author Amabel Strachey and her god father was Rudyard Kipling.
Susan is most remembered for her pottery, she created and owned Portmeirion Pottery.  Susan was however a brilliant artist and particularly interested in sea life.  Originally Portmeirion Pottery made souvenir goods for Portmeirion but it quickly became a brand in her own right.  Probably the most famous design is Botanic Garden, but there is so much more to Portmeirion pottery than that.  In particular I collect the 1960s patterns such as Dolphin and Pantomime, which I find really attractive.  (The Prisoner fans amongst you will know that Pantomime is one of the patterns that features in his kitchen).
I bought the Susan Williams Ellis rose not knowing really what it would look like, but I have not been disappointed.  I bought three, one for the back garden, one for the new side border in the front and one for to be the centre of my knot garden (or more accurately: my knot-quite garden).  It is beautiful.  Small, delicate and a great perfume.  A really good addition to my garden, thank you David Austin!


  1. Love the colour, that tinge of cafe au lait to centre. Of course David Austin Roses are always good - we swear by them. Completely agree re association.

  2. Lovely rose - and, like you, I miss the Portmeirion nursery... I do wish roses did well with me, and examples like that one make me wish it even more. Plus good associations...

  3. Hi Alison,

    I also have Susan; I bought her last year and she is wonderful! I also got 'Harlow Carr' at the same time and I'm smitten!


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