Wednesday 4 August 2010

Garden visit: Wollarton Old Hall Garden

The second garden visit of our Shropshire holiday was to Wollerton Old Hall Garden in North Shropshire. Unlike the Dower House Garden, Wollerton is more like a pleasure garden. For me, the difference is that Dower House Garden includes food production, where Wollerton does not. However, as much as I prefer gardens that include fruit and vegetables, it does not follow that I do not enjoy pleasure gardens; I do! And Wollerton gave plenty of pleasure.

 Vista from the Lanhydrock Garden back through the Sundial Garden, towards the house.

There has probably been a garden at Wollerton for 500 years, but the current design began in the 1980's. This is a garden of vistas and garden rooms. Vistas such as the one above, which dissolve into rooms as you move forward into, as depicted in the photograph of the Lanhydrock Garden and Rill Garden's below.

 Lanhydrock garden, detail

 Rill Garden

Although I do not have the inclination, time, or money for designing and maintaining large borders myself, I do admire those who do. Wollerton's main perennial border was lovely.

Wollerton is also a plant persons garden, and for me, it's collection of Salvia's gave great delight. Blue and blue-purple Salvia's are figure amongst my favourite flowers.
 Salvia patens (Cambridge Blue?)

 Salvia nemorosa variety

mauve Salvia patens variety

Other plants I also feel I must obtain for my garden include:
Dahlia 'Bishop of Auckland', enjoyed by hover flies too

Dahlia 'Ragged Robin'

Clematis 'Black Prince'

Echinacea 'White Swan'
Kevin and I found ourselves wandering around, stopping for a cup of tea and scones, then wandering around again only to discover something we missed the first time around. I suspect if I went back the next day, there would have been further plants and glimpses to discover.

I do feel Wollerton could have done with a lovely vegetable garden, I'm sure they would do it quite beautifully! But that's just my personal preference for gardens to also be productive. Wollerton is definitely a pleasurable garden to visit and I would return again.