Thursday, 29 May 2014

The last days of spring in the garden

Spring turns to summer in the Ednovean Farm garden here in Cornwall

Take a walk with me now through the garden as spring rolls forward into summer. These days, to keep abreast of developments I've renewed my love affair with power tools for the garden,setting about the ivy that covers the front of the house with a hedge trimmer and finally decided that I could strim the last of the daffodil leaves that were still reluctant to take their long summer siesta. The Italian garden has looked rebellious up until now with burgeoning hedges flopping outwards, giving it a slightly gothic horror show sort of look. Luckily this week a nice young man with a very powerful pole hedge trimmer instilled some strict discipline into them..........just a few days hard raking and it should look 'ansome!

So lets start near the kitchen door where he palms try to knit themselves to the house

Palms leaning towards the kitchen steps

Geraniums have overwintered here on top of the steps
quite happily

The self clinging climbing Hydrangea is in full bloom
now framing the doorway

Gunnera enjoys the run off from the barn roofs beside the car park

and into the courtyard gardens where plants wait to be put into my terracotta posts (slapped wrists for slow work!) This year I've bought some scented Geraniums to put by each seating area after spending a few happy hours at Lower Kennegy Nursery sniffing the many plants on offer and finally deciding on Prince of Orange for its lovely citrus scent............but I could be tempted to return for a few more!

I didn't actually go to buy an Agave but.......!

Our Trachycarpus Fortunei are in full bloom now too

and finally to the main event this May the Echiums

A pretty blue Echium in the courtyard garden

Our Echiums are dramatic this spring ringing the lawn with impossible large flower spikes that are alive with the buzzing of happy bees. they've cross pollinated from our original Echium panina and perennial plants to produce tall multi spiked plants.

Pure luck where the echiums have decided to grow of course

Evening light and I love them

Looking down over the garden from the lane yesterday

And so good niht I hope you enjoyed my impressions of the garden Read more about our home here

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Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Five suggestions for rainy days in West Cornwall

Every morning I lean on the kitchen island after breakfast ready to offer
advice about our guests day out in #Cornwall

Over the years I've built up quite a bank of suggestions about days out in Cornwall with little tidbits of info brought back daily by our guests to top up the "library"! So if you should see a mornings rain in the forecast try one these until the clouds roll away as surely they will, or as a local Cornish bard that used to say "Penwith moors in the rain - Marvelous!!" and stay with your plan!

Penlee House Museum

Set at the top of Marrab road in an elegant building previously Victorian home built in 1865 it is the only Gallery devoted to works of the Penzance and Newlyn school artist of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The ever changing exhibitions normally showcase the The work of Elizabeth and Stanhope Forbes, Walter Langley, Howard Harvey, Lamorna Birch and Dame laura Knight with ever changing exhibitions.


Penzance 400: A Celebration of the History of Penzance

The Terminus, 1925 by Stanhope Forbes

Visit daily between 10.00am and 5.00pm with free entry on Saturdays. More more  information about Penlee House visit:-

Eat lunch in the lovely airy conservatory set in a lush garden or explore Penzance.  The Turk's Head, the oldest Inn in Penzance, set in Chapel street which as the former main street is packed full of atmosphere and character.

The Tate Gallery St Ives

Set in a fabulous position overlooking St Ives bay it is worth a visit for the architecture alone but do anticipate crowds on rainy days! With an ever changing exhibition in the outer airy galleries and the  main spine of St Ives artist topped by a cafe with stunning views.

Current Exhibition

International Exchanges: Modern Art and St Ives 1915–1965
Tate St Ives: Exhibition
17 May – 28 September 2014

Patrick Heron Long Table with Fruit 1949

Visit daily 10.00am - 5.20pm

For further information The Tate St Ives

Lunch in the gallery or try The Sloop Inn on the harbour for an atmospheric pub

I also enjoyed the Barbara hepworth Museum set in her intimate townhouse garden watching the rain drops trickling along the edge of her huge organic sculptures and watching the marvelous St Ives light  reflecting in the moving droplets.

Geevor Tin Mine and Museum

Geevor, the Cornish tin mine that just wouldn't die is a great place to start  the full story of mining in Cornwall. Kept alive by the miners who held on to this important piece of Cornish history and it has now achieved Cornish Mining World Heritage site inclusion.  The site is packed full of information, set  in a stunning location beside the North Atlantic seas. Underground tours of the 250 year old Wheal Mexico workings, talks from ex miners themselves and a fascinating little museum.

Visit 9.00am - 5pm Sunday to Friday (last admission 4.00pm)  Summer
For Further information:- Geevor Tin Mine

For lunch there is an on site cafe or meander along the scenic coastal road to The Gurnards Head  for great food

Porthcurno Telegraph Museum

Almost a birthplace for modern communications  Porthcurno valley, in the far west of Cornwall, was the hub of international cable communications from 1870-1970 and a training college for the communications industry until 1993.

In WWII secret tunnels were dug by Cornish miners to house an underground building and the entire telegraph operations. These bomb proof/gas proof tunnels provided 14 secure cables out of the UK to its allies and are rumoured to be haunted still
The museum proper is reopening in June after extensive reorganisation and the addition of a Sculpture Garden is a nice extra for the day  
Visit from June 14th for the stunning newly refurbished exhibitions  Opening times:-10.00am - 17.00 daily (Last admission 16.00) For further info check here:- Porthcurno Telegraph Museum 
Try lunch at the atmospheric, unspoilt,  Logan Rock Inn - sorry no web site for this little individual pub but it's as you'd expect a cornish pub to be - spotlessly clean, full of character and unadorned.

Wayside Museum Zennor

Wayside Museum & Trewey Mill, Zennor

The16th-century working watermill and cottage holds a fascinating group of artifacts celebrating a very local occupation of this part of Cornwall. The collection extending to over 5000 artifacts benning with bronze age that still lends field boundaries to the local landscape.  The pretty village of Zennor backed by rugged moors with tiny pastures sweeping down to the sea, was described by one of my american visitors as "exactly what i expected a Cornish village to look like" The pretty village church hold a very special carved bench end and an ancient story of a local man seduced to sea by a mermaid.

Visit 1030am - 5.30pm May until September For further details and winter opening times:- Wayside Museum

Try lunch at the Tinner's Arms a true cornish pub dating from 1271 and once frequented by D.H. Lawrence. Here  the cows still queue to be milked in the lane outside and hungry coastal footpath walkers refuel for the next stretch of the path with one of the "nations favorite drives waiting for you just outside on the road between St Ives and Land's End.

Enjoy Cornwall and remember the rain never usually last for very long!

We live at Ednovean Farm a glorious 17-cuntury grante home set in over an acre of sub tropical gardens within the sight of the sea at Perranuthnoe Find us at

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Supper in a #Cornish pub!

Well sorry Spud CAt but you can't come!

Still the evening was beautiful and the lawn mower needed to go to a workshop in Treen for repairs after its usual late spring rebellion and so we set off following the winding road beyond Penzance out towards lands End and the very edge of Cornwall.

Treen is such a pretty village of traditional cottages one with a tongue in cheek ign on the gate "I don't know where the beach is" framed by the sea. We often used to walk with blaise across the fields to Logans Rock and it was there that Charles took the spectacular picture of the heart in sands, that was on our web site for years

Looking towards Porthcurno beach from Logan Rock - Charles took
this one about Christmas time one year

Ripples in the sand

Last night though we were hungry and made our way along to the Logan Rock Inn a traditional cornish pub full of atmosphere and history, the simple white washed walls covered with nostalgic  photos. We squeezed into a table in an intimate little dining room, for a simple pub super - I chose the Beef in Ale pie and yummy chips (well we had been busy yesterday after all! Charles went for the locally caught fish in a pie, topped by acres of melted cheese. Just right - simple and easy and we drove home contentedly, under the clearest skies turning pink with the sunset.

And the pesky lawn mower - well we are expecting a phone call about Friday at about the same time that the camera should come back form its days in "camera hospital! of those weeks!

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Monday, 12 May 2014

A walk around the garden here in #Cornwall

A newly mown lawn at Ednovean Farm

Well spring is creeping on, with hedgerows filled now with the vibrants spires of bluebells and froths of cow parsley and Danni keeps as strict eye on the swaying vegetation. He's always ready to seize the opportunity if we brush close to the hedgerows to craftily pick a choice bloom - he particularly favours the lime green ones but the dainty cow parley will do for a quick snack as they brush past at muzzle height. As all of West Cornwall turns into one verdant garden we have to work harder to guide our plot along an abstemious route with lawns that grow so vigorously the rabbits sit around looking bloated and just hop into the next part of the Italian Garden to avoid the mower. I thought it would be nice to share the gardens progress with you at the beginning of the month as it shapes up for Summer!

The main lawn fringed by sheltering Cordyline Australis 

looking along the length of the garden towards the Italian Garden

So far the lawn mower is holding up but it usually plans a rebellion at about this time of year and so we are keeping our fingers crossed!

I've softened the lines of the terrace that i lined with formal box balls with South African Daisies that sit near to the bank through the winter gales and brighten the early days of sitting out in the garden

I've grouped a line of box balls along the edge of the terrace

South African Daisies

The seps at the end of the Sundial garden lead around to my new route that looks down over the garden - I think planning journeys around the garden is quite important - particularly for a B&B when guest need to unwind and relax and get back in touch with just discovering what is around the next corner
Steps into the shelter belt pause on a tiny circular lawn

before winding back towards the main lawn

I'm hoping to add a few more Mediterranean style plants to this walk

Back through the lush vegetation to the echiums spires below

A granite cobbled path leads back to the courtyard

Spud guarding the courtyard from his vantage point
outside of the

And into the courtyards again

Early morning sunshine touching the courtyard gardens

Blue seas beyond in the bay

Gateway to the gardens

The sheltering garden walls

Boats laying off in the bay

There is apple blossom in our little orchard now but that is a walk for another day!!

Hope you have a great week back soon with more news of the garden and do look us up at :-

Thursday, 8 May 2014

We renovated a barn

Jessica in the old stable yard approaching what is
now the front door

Chatting to a friend the other day she said "why haven't you written anything about your renovation" and thinking about it you know, I haven't! So after sorting through some now vintage photos i shall begin!

I came to Ednovean as a teenager when it was badly overgrown with nettles and brambles with an old rusting car in the farmyard and boat engines stored in the old cow house. The back wall of the two story building had fallen in and the back wall had fallen out and we only discovered the big underground water tanks when my nephew bouncing on an old tyre as children do, started to sink into the ground. The debris was removed by the scrap men, the rubble from the roof was shovelled out through the hole in the wall and the range of buildings  were turned into loose boxes, a tack room and a feed house. And so it spent the next twenty years as a home to my horses and families of cats, giving lesson, breeding a few horses, taking liveries and eventually meeting my future husband Charles

Maizie brown, Jessica and Mumma Cat outside of  Shahra's stable that
has now become the Pink rooms bathroom

Sprocket the Rocket out of a home bred mare with
my future husband Charles In front of what is now
french doors into the guest sitting room

It was only when Charles proposed, that the idea of converting the barn into the home we have now, started to take shape and we started a long year of renovations on the main two story building in 1990 finally finishing in 1991 before getting married in the village church with a reception at the local Restaurant formerly known as "Bertie Woosters"

My favorite wedding snap - not the posh photographers one but
my Fathers, with two dear Aunts sadly no longer with us
In 1991 the barn become our home

We were very proud when we had windows!

The horses retreated to the top yard now the car park - how I loved
that sereis 2 Landrover

The cavernous interior

Charles spent many hours hacking out the
old pointing

Drains! a big day

The dumper truck became a permanent fixture for a year

As we settled down to life at Ednovean we put a little B&B sign on the end of the lane and waited for our first guests. We spent the next ten years getting as far a the Blue room working our way down through a second range of buildings before finally landscaping the gardens. It doesn't seem possible that we have been running our B&B at Ednovean Farm now for twenty three years and we've met some fascinating people over the years. We've hosted honeymoons and anniversary celebrations; birthdays and funeral guests: short breaks and long holidays and throughout it all Ednovean has purred like a happy animal in her new role as a house and home.