Sunday, 19 January 2014

Summer dreams today in the January couryard

The path that welcomes our guests to the sheltered
courtyard gardens

This winter we've been glad of the sheltered courtyard gardens around the house formed in the year 2000 by garden designer Ian Lowe and maturing now with the years.  Even on a dull day (as above) i always find something to look at in the formal layout created from the old farmyard, the formal layout comes into its own stripped down by winter, dissected by the formal pattern and strictly geometric box hedges and topiary softened by the burgeoning Date palms

Each time we excavated anything at the farm I always hoped to find old flagstones or cobbles and each time I find the deep sticky clay suggested to have originally traveled in front of ancient glaciers and forming an infill between the two granite headland either side of Perranuthnoe. i was a little bit luckier with the granite sets that form this path though - after years of scanning free newspaper adds for just such an item, the day before the path was due to be laid there they were "For sale granite sets!" They form a wonderful welcoming entrance leading to our Parterre d courtyard in front of the house don't you think and the old worn stones catch the light at certain times even on dull days giving the garden a feeling of permanence.

In the summer time the courtyard glow basking in the warmth and light and giving secluded breakfast areas and tranquil memories to dream of yet  when a rare winter frost comes, the structural planting gains new life.

A summer day and the courtyard shines

The geometric patterns of the box

Strictly formal

or wildly romantic?

basking at the end of  a Summer day the heat held in the old granite walls

Looking down on the fountain

Winter frost is rare in West Cornwall

Back to yesterday from my trip along memory lane though - here's  where benches sit under old stone walls waiting to catch the suns rays and host a basking cat and plants wait for warmer days but i hope the little look back at Summer has cheered the day along for you all. We need it sometimes don't you think!

We have lots of separate side rooms (and I didn't notice
the piece of polythene blown in by the storm until now!)

I'm not sure my Agaves are enjoying the worse winter for twenty years!

The Date Palms have enjoyed the mostly mild weather

I'll leave you with one of my favorite plants gleaming in the sunshine
yesterday, after one of those recent vicious showers