Sunday, December 29, 2013

In the Rear View Mirror--Idyll Haven

 It's my habit to look back on gardens visited at the end of the year; and at the same time I start to look forward to what the next year holds. 2013 was particularly fine and I have high hopes for 2014. Any year that I have the opportunity to visit my friends in New England is a good one for me .

 What accident of fate made me a California girl ? A beautiful , diverse state--4 hours to the dessert, 3 hours to the Sierra Nevada, 1 hour to our spectacular coast. 5 hours I'm in Oregon, 7 I'm in San Diego.Walk out my door, I'm in wine country. None of this is taken for granted. And even so, when I venture away from here , I can clearly see the attributes of places that are not California. My friend Sue is a New Englander, born and raised. She does battle with bugs that don't hang around at my house -thank god. She lives with that humid thing -but the tropicals love it.It actually rains in summer  and you can't buy that kind of water.  In July I have to put on long sleeves to go outside after the sun goes down. I could leave the long sleeves at home when I go to New England in July if it weren't  for freezing cold airplane a/c and having to wait for an airport shuttle bus outside in San Francisco.

 I visited Idyll Haven in June where we gathered to kick-off our annual Idyllunion garden touring long weekend. Is this New England or what ?

One of my favorite areas of Sues property is the garden that runs along the driveway..Sue has wonderful design instincts and no fear of editing her choices if shes not happy with the result.

I try to avoid overused lingo like  'garden rooms' but in fact as the paths meander around the perimeter of the house , and encounter boundaries such as the low green picket fence or a small speciman tree , it is quite like a series of rooms .  Here we see the east side . I'd be pretty jazzed if my Symphytum got that big.

 Step up to the fence and see the view to the back garden.

The patio garden.

 New England isn't on my travel agenda for 2014 , so I guess it will be another year or so til I get my  next Idyll Haven fix.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Bloomday Goose Egg

 Even the Alyssum are fried. Not a single bloom in my garden this month..the Camellias closed up shop, the Lavenders that were blooming away  merrily in November are waving the white flag. Several nights in a row of consistent temperatures in the low twenties have laid my garden low. To many of my friends east of the Rockies, my twenties are mundane and maybe even warm-ish .I was significantly under-prepared ;plants that I routinely leave out for the winter appear quite dead. On the plus side, the weighty decision of whether to cut back now or wait til spring has been taken off my hands-might just as well cut !

Thanks Carol , for the opportunity to see what blooms in gardens around the globe. Except for mine.