Kelmarsh - its been a while

"Where do you want to go today?" is always a good question, sometimes I have no idea but on this day I had sudden whim to go to Kelmarsh Hall.  It's around 30 mins from home and whilst I had been before, it felt like it was quite a while ago so it must be time to visit again.

When I looked back I found it had indeed been 'quite a while', it was 2016 when I last visited.  The day in question looked like it would not rain, which seems rare at the moment, so with the promise of cake at the cafe there off we set.
One of my favourite elements at Kelmarsh is the topiary and the pleached hedges.  I had spent the weekend previously pruning my pleached hedge, which was heavily influenced by Kelmarsh, and I did smile that for once I was ahead on the trimming game. (their gardeners might (do) have far more to look after than I do so this is not a criticism at all).
A lot of the topiary is what I would call 'lumpy-bumpy', which is an affectionate term meanings 'its been there a long time and the shapes have evolved and softened'.  This is one of my favourite topiary moments at Kelmarsh, it is delightfully lumpy-bumpy and beautifully planted around it.
and I loved these rocking chairs beautifully placed in the shade.
Look at this magnificent shrub, that I was told the name of and promptly forgot.  I think it might be Itea ilicifolia, but it may well not be.  Whoever it is, it is still magnificent.
We paused to admire the Fan Garden (allegedly marked out by Nancy Lancaster waving her parasol in a curve).  This garden hosts lots of old roses so most are single flowering and now in their rest period.  I like elements of gardens that have their moment and then rest.  Not everything has to be full razzle-dazzle all the time, that would be exhausting.
The long border was absolutely stunning.  It is quite sheltered here so had not got blown around like many of our gardens have been and the rain and sun was helping it grow well.
The Walled Garden was beckoning to us so in we went.
I enjoy a good walled garden and this is a very good walled garden.
I paused by one of the arches to admire the Cobea scandens.  I fail to grow this plant well with alarming regularity.  This year I thought I had cracked it, this year I thought I would get some flowers and then the recent winds snapped the stems - damn.
The sky started to look grey, but we persevered.  We sat in the vegetable area to eat our lunch and we were asked a question by a passer by about cooking beetroot.  This did feel a bit random - I wondered if she thought we were gardeners having a rest or if we looked like we cooked beetroot; as someone who gardens and who has cooked beetroot either felt a reasonable assumption.
Regular readers will know I do love a pet graveyard.  Though I did wonder how you would grow things near this as it was a bit mid-border.  I wouldn't want to dig.....
Then we went into the glasshouses,
and had that glasshouse envy that I always get when wandering around big gardens. 
I stopped to admire this passionflower.  I fail to grow these usually too, though maybe this year I am having better success.  I love these complex flowers.
Then it was back out in to the garden to admire the planting and particularly dahlias.  They grow a lot of dahlias.
We spent too long in front of this very fine dahlia trying to decide how you would describe this shade of red.  Is it madder red, it is a pinky red, it is not scarlet.  Is is a carmine red?  I don't know - answers on a postcard (or in the comments...)
Then we went for a walk around the lake.  We saw signs saying 'Fairy Walk' and we wondered what they meant.  

Then we found out.  What fun.

We had a lovely afternoon.  Of course we had cake (a very nice lemon drizzle) and coffee and then it was time for home.  I need to visit again soon.

Take care and be kind

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  1. Beautiful destination. I wish it was closer, because I would definitely make a visit. Love the Passionflower and the fairies and the garden structure and architecture. Thanks for sharing!

  2. It sounds to me that you had a really delightful time in the gardens. I enjoyed going around the areas with you. Nice tour if I may say so myself! beautiful place!


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