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The line of green clearly marks where you are meant to walk. But now that all the grass is cut, it is easy to walk anywhere.

Fall projects for Gangly Teens

Coming home after a tour of gardens in the UK is always a shock. English gardens are so lush, so flowery, so impressive in predictable and unpredictable ways. In comparison, my garden in mid-September is a let-down. In fact, it makes me think of a gangly 13-year old. The teen may have good bones and a sense of…

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Thankfully the hayfield had been cut, allowing us to cross the field without damaging the crop.

The Devil’s Arrows

  For the last ten days I’ve been touring gardens in Scotland and the north of England.  A few days ago the group I’m hosting stopped to investigate two prehistoric standing stones. Their setting could not be more prosaic — a hayfield close to a busy highway, not far from the city of York — but the…

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Who wouldn

The Second Time Around

  Yesterday I arrived in Edinburgh and tomorrow I begin a tour of gardens in southern Scotland and northern England. This tour is similar to one I hosted last September, which means I’ll be taking this year’s group to many of the same places I visited then. On the 2015 tour I was seeing some gardens for…

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The sculpture in the distance is in the same place, as are the railings on the drive. The trees have grown -- but not as much as the grass.

The Big Meadow in August

  This summer I’ve been watching what used to be a manicured lawn turn into a meadow.  Seeing the changes month to month has shown that what pleased me in June …     became even better in July.     I was thrilled. Was the transformation from lawn to meadow going to be as…

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A door in a brick wall at The Grove, the garden of the late David Hicks, frames the view of a stone construction beyond.

Framing the View

“No matter how panoramic its scope, a view of surrounding countryside becomes a genuine garden picture only when it has been framed.” – Penelope Hobhouse Recently I came across this statement from the English garden writer and designer Penelope Hobhouse. I read it quickly, nodded in agreement, then paused and read it again. Did I agree? Does…

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