Ornamental Grasses / Graminées Ornamentales

19 & 20 Sept. 2015: 10h – 18h

Our next event in Caunes-Minervois: Planting with Ornamental Grasses

Notre prochain événement à Caunes-Minervois: Comment employer les graminées dans le jardin

See you there! A bientot! 
t10tEH 1plUFm

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Hanbury Botanical Gardens Part II: Citrus and Acacia Trees (and an Albizia)

We love living among the trees here at Hanbury Botanical Gardens. Here are some photos of some of the many Citrus and Acacias, plus an Albizia. We’ve been eating the Citrus, not all of them taste sweet…, and helping the seed laboratory here to collect and clean the Acacia seeds. Happy Days!

Botanical walks in the Citrus Groves. Beware the mosquitoes, the large cobwebs and the sticky white fluff which are pests called Metcalfa pruinosa (Citrus Flatid Planthopper!).
Botanical walks in the Citrus Groves. Beware the mosquitoes, the large cobwebs and the sticky white fluff which are pests called Metcalfa pruinosa (Citrus Flatid Planthopper!).

 

My favourite Citrus trees are in this collage: the horn-shaped Bitter Orange and the heady scented Kaffir Lime.
My favourite Citrus trees are in this collage: the horn-shaped Bitter Orange and the heady scented Kaffir Lime.

 

I've heard that some of the labels on the Citrus trees are wrong. Let me know if you know!
I’ve heard that some of the labels on the Citrus trees are wrong. Let me know if you know!

 

The velvety Acacia x hanburyana (Sir Thomas Hanbury's Mimosa) and Acacia podalyriifolia (Queensland Silver Wattle), with the gorgeous white puff ball flowers of Albizia amara.
The velvety Acacia x hanburyana (Sir Thomas Hanbury’s Mimosa) and Acacia podalyriifolia (Queensland Silver Wattle), with the gorgeous white puff ball flowers of Albizia amara.

 

The 2 huge trees of the yellow-flowered Acacia karroo, formerly known as A. horrida, with the long and curly seedpods of A. julifera and the box of beautiful A. cyclops (Coastal Wattle) seeds on display in the Hanbury Botanical Gardens' seed laboratory.
The 2 huge trees of the yellow-flowered Acacia karroo, formerly known as A. horrida, with the long and curly seedpods of A. julifera and the box of beautiful A. cyclops (Coastal Wattle) seeds on display in the Hanbury Botanical Gardens’ seed laboratory.

 

La Mortola – Living and working at the Hanbury Botanical Gardens

This our first blog from our 3 month stay at the Hanbury Gardens on the French/Italian Coastal border

The long hot route to Italy!
The long hot route from Norfolk to Italy!

Now a little walk down through the garden to see some of the wonders of Hanbury and some of the work we have done so far..

Above the entrance to Hanbury the Chinese symbol for 'Happiness'
Above the entrance to Hanbury is the Chinese symbol for ‘Happiness’
View down through the garden to the Palazzo
View down through the garden to the Palazzo

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Cactus and Palm section
The Succulent and Palm section
Scented plant walkway leading up to the Palazzo Terrace
Scented plant walkway leading up to the Palazzo Terrace
A very spiky job on a very hot day! Renovating an old cactus bed on the Palazzo Terrace
A very spiky job on a very hot day! Renovating an old succulent bed on the Palazzo Terrace
The cactus don't mind being baked in the sun, waiting to be replanted
The plants don’t mind being baked in the sun whilst waiting to be replanted
A window onto the romantic wilderness of the large summer roses
A window onto the romantic wilderness of the large summer roses
Echiums looking stunning in May
Echiums looking stunning in May

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Sunbathing residents of the garden
Sunbathing residents of the garden

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Fabulous garden for creature watching. Cricket laying eggs in one of the historic walls
Fabulous garden for creature watching. Cricket laying eggs in one of the historic walls
Erigeron karvinskianus (Mexican Fleabane)
Erigeron karvinskianus (Mexican Fleabane)
Romneya coulteri (Californian Tree Poppy)
Romneya coulteri (Californian Tree Poppy)
Acacia x hanburyana
Acacia x hanburyana

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View back up the garden from The Meadow
View back up through the garden from The Meadow
Accra sellowiana (Pineapple Guava or Feijoada) These striking flowers should turn into delicious little fruits later in the year although the buds are proving popular with the Blackbirds
Acca sellowiana (Pineapple Guava or Feijoada)
These striking flowers should turn into delicious little fruits later in the year although the buds are proving popular with the Blackbirds
Hibiscus 'Fireball' (Swamp Mallow)
Hibiscus ‘Fireball’ (Swamp Mallow)
At the bottom of the garden this building houses an old olive press from the original garden
At the bottom of the garden this building houses an old olive press from the original garden

 

The biggest job for us so far is to renovate the Salvia borders at the bottom of the garden. They form a well established collection of Salvias from around the world grown on the terraces of the former kitchen garden
The biggest job for us so far is to renovate the Salvia borders at the bottom of the garden. They form a
well established collection of Salvias from around the world grown on the terraces of the former kitchen garden
Kate drawing out a plan of the beds
Kate drawing out a plan of the beds
Imogen adding compost to help the new Salvias, the soil is the hardest we've worked with so far, it has to be chiseled away with a small mattock!
Imogen adding compost to help the new Salvias, the soil is one of the hardest we’ve worked with so far, it has to be chiseled away with a small mattock!
Salvia lanceolata.
Salvia lanceolata.
Salvia viscosa
Salvia viscosa
Salvia pomifera
Salvia pomifera
Salvia leucantha
Salvia leucophylla
Salvia semiatrata
Salvia semiatrata
Salvia canariensis
Salvia canariensis
Salvia scabra
Salvia scabra
Salvia chamaedryoides
Salvia chamaedryoides

From the Salvia terraces down to the sea, unfortunately not accessible from the gardens but gives you an idea of the setting.

View from the beach at the bottom of the garden towards Menton (France)
View from the beach at the bottom of the garden towards Menton (France)
Some of the local sea creatures, so far spotted Hermit Crabs, Anemones, red Starfish and an Octopus!
Some of the local sea creatures. So far we have spotted Hermit Crabs, Anemones, red Starfish and an Octopus!

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Well that’s the first six weeks of our stay, it’s probably going to get a lot hotter and the flowers even brighter for the next six.

 

Fonts, Shops and Door knockers from our year in the south of France!

This is a short post from Kate that has nothing to do with gardening, except that gardening has taken us along the south of France for 12 months, and I took these photos of old shops, fonts and door knockers along the way!

I particularly like the round caravan on the sign for the Les Ormes campsite
I particularly like the round caravan on the sign for the Les Ormes campsite
Stone fonts
Stone fonts

From left to right. I’ve taken many photos of outdoor laundry pools, ‘lavoirs’, and communal bathhouses, the latter being one of my favourite things about life in Japan.The only bathhouse we’ve seen that is still in use is for the homeless, next to the Montpellier botanical garden. The cinema in the above collage is now used for tai ji. The Pont du Gard is engraved by craftsmen who used it to advertise their name and tools. The tall stone is a road sign indicating the way to St. Hippolyte du Fort. The bridge is in here in memory of Suzanne Robinson, and the brick, like many old bricks and roof tiles, is engraved with the details of the company that manufactured it.

Coiffures and Mongay Boutique for chaps
Coiffures and Mongay Boutique for chaps

Hairdressers have all the best fonts…

Shop fonts
Shop fonts

Most of these lovely shops are still trading although we’ve seen quite a few converted into houses with the signs restored.

Door knockers of France
Door knockers of France

And possibly my favourite thing to photograph, door knockers of animals, women’s hands and lovely shapes. The town of Auch had the best ones by far.

And to sign off, some terrible showing off with my name in font!

Kate's name on the panels at Brackenhurst, Nottingham Trent University
Kate’s name on the panels at Brackenhurst, Nottingham Trent University

Terrarius Project in the Cevennes

We are building a garden for an eco-house in a hamlet in the Cevennes. The Cevennes is an area of rolling hills covered in Holm oak (Quercus ilex), White oak (Quercus alba) and Stone pine (Pinus pinea); one-way bridges; vineyards; and a population of wild boar that greatly outnumbers the orange-jacketed hunters and their howling dogs.

Autumn colours in the Cevennes
Autumn colours in the Cevennes
New Year's Dawn 2014
New Year’s Dawn 2014

Continue reading “Terrarius Project in the Cevennes”