Friday, 24 October 2014

The Royal Kew: Duke's Garden and Treetop Walkway

               After visiting Dave's Alpine garden I went to a walled garden that formerly was the private garden for Cambridge Cottage. The Duke's Garden is one of the lesser-known corners of Kew, overlooked by many visitors to the Royal Botanic Gardens. 

I saw the Cambridge Cottage in a beautiful English garden, where an inhabitant was the first Duke of Cambridge after whom the garden takes its name. The Cambridge Cottage and a garden was added to the Kew Gardens in 1904. Now there is the Kew Gardens Gallery that shows exhibitions of botanical art by past and contemporary artists.

I've read that Cambridge Cottage is licensed to host civil wedding ceremonies and receptions. But at the moment when I've been there were not ceremonies. 

Large lawns and seasonal beds, which were looking very colorful at this time of the year. The beds framed manicured lawns. 

I liked the composition of autumn flowers as Aruncus dioicus, Сosmos sulphureus, Astilbe, Rudbeckia, Sedum, Bergenia and herbs and a variety of violet lavender species and cultivars.

I've seen the ‘exotic bed’ that was made for seeing just how hardy some tender plants are, such as tree ferns, ornamental bananas, cannas and gingers  that thrive in warm conditions.

Near the Temperate House (which was closed for renovation) an Arboretum is. It includes a 59 foot high (20 m) Treetop Walkway known as the Xstrata Walkway. I wanted to climb up there! They said that Treetop Walkway offers spectacular views of the treetops and the gardens below. 

  The Walkway itself is quite wide with very substantial rails. Look at the picture to see people on the walkway it's gives you a guide to scale.


From the height of the Treetop Walkway the crowns are clearly visible especially I liked the branches of chestnut trees with fruits. The most wonderful views in Arboretum are the Mediterranean Garden, the Rhododendrons (they did not bloom in autumn), and the bamboo collection.

I imagined what the birds can see from such a height. I loved to walk of the Treetop Walkway!


Would you like to climb up this Walkway and to see the tree crowns as the birds see them?

To be continued...

Thursday, 16 October 2014

GBBD in October

         It's Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day now. As usually October is colder than September. On October, 2  the temps suddenly dropped from +19 C to +8 C. Although the night temps are not very low, we had the first frost. What plants are hardy or aren't? The most of tender plants as dahlia, begonia, lily, hymenocallis were moved in my greenhouse at the end of September but this did not save them and frost killed their flowers. On the other hand some plants outside were more hardy and still grow and bloom! 
Take a look at them: it's 'Swany' (polyanthus rose), 'Folklore' (climbing rose), the last flower of phlox and sedum.

I've written about my experience in clematis growing and said that some of them did not bloom at all. I was wrong! The blue one decided to bloom and feels well in cold October.

What a treat to look at the apple tree! Full of juice apples ripen and fall, and I have to pick them up for storage.

The Potentilla bush is colorful with its yellow flowers, Parthenocissus is dark red and loses leaves. I've also found two flowers of Cosmos that I had not seen in summer, they are so pretty!

Novi-belgii 'Mont Blanc' asters grew all summer and are in bloom in October, I think they need a bit of cold to flower. Ligularia was moved this spring and it started to bloom very late so has flowers till now. Helenium blooms late this year as well. Aronia is full of ripened black sour berries, perhaps birds will eat all of them next month. Poor little autumn crocus! They unexpectedly sprouted and were so nice within high grass in a dark corner, but... frost killed them.

I enjoy looking at parsley, is green and fresh and I hope will be able to harvest it till snowfall.

I've made apple jam and on the terrace we had tea from mugs that are Helene's gift: they have pictures of her beautiful garden and the words:

 Please, have tea, apples, some jam, help yourself!

Does summer continue in your place? What plants are still in bloom? How do you prepare them to cold weather?