A Garden Walk at the end of May: Part Two

Yesterday I started to show you around my garden in Part One. I hope you will now join me for the second half of the garden tour… there’ll be tea and cake afterwards! ๐Ÿ˜‰

We got as far as the bench near The Professor yesterday, at the bottom of the pathway. So now we can look back up at the west-facing rockery. The Iris sibirica are still blooming, and the pink scented peony is opening too. Below the Binocular Man you can see the Cotoneaster in flower next to one of the largest rocks in the rockery. The round frame bottom right is for the pinkย Aster novae-angliae ‘Alma Pรถtschke’ in the autumn, as it gets so leggy. I forgot to give the Asters and the Achilleas the Chelsea chop this spring and it is probably too late now.


Let’s look at that pink peony up close. Mmmm, can you smell it?


A few steps further along the base of the rockery and we can see around the corner where the Red Valerian (Centranthus ruber) flourishes. In this steepest part of the rockery there is a lot of Teucrium hircanicum spreading nicely, some Willowherb (Epilobium angustifolium ‘Stahl Rose’ )ย a lot of weeds(!), some Oriental poppies (Papaver orientale), a Buddleia davidii and the Miscanthus Adagio at the bottom. Somewhere in there is the rhubarb too! On the right is a tall hardy Hibiscus.


If we turn around we can see the former stream bed, fed with rain water directed from the roof, that used to run down to a pond before our time here – the pond is now our compost heap! There was some extravagant hardware built into this garden in the 1970s, but little thought on maintenance, and terrible neglect when we arrived. The now dry stream bed is planted with Day Lilies, Aruncus, and a single pale yellow iris that only flowers if we have had enough damp weather… It seems a shame to disturb them, so it will probably remain as a reminder of what once was…GardenWalk98

On the left of the bridge across the stream bed are the ostrich ferns (Matteuccia struthiopteris). Although they get full sun here they still thrive, but need cutting right back most years by midsummer if they get scorched by strong sun.


Now we can see the south-facing rockery, full of Valerian, Poppies, Lavender and at the top the glorious golden Euonymus fortunei – a very hardy, evergreen and drought-resistant shrub that I wouldn’t be without.


If we take a few steps back we can see the trees in our garden and the woods beyond as the backdrop. The Miscanthus on the left (just visible behind the ferns) will change this view when it finally gains height in the summer.


Up the steps next to another large rock and back to the patio…


There, now we have reached the top of the south side and you can see the fresh growth of the lavenders and roses, which will provide colour throughout June and July, along with the Red Valerian which will hopefully attract lots of butterflies and Hummingbird Hawk-moths again.


Shall I put the kettle on now? Take a seat and enjoy the view!


I hope you enjoyed the walk around my rockery. Perhaps you will give us a tour of your garden soon too? ๐Ÿ˜‰

46 thoughts on “A Garden Walk at the end of May: Part Two

  1. No sugar please, just milk. Wonderful tour Cathy, what can I see at the end of the line of trees, in your 3rd last photo, where does that go to? I really like your bed of ferns, I do not grow any here, en masse they look really good.

    • Hi Julie. That is the gate, with green screening on it… we can open it out onto the field track and meadow beyond. The ferns multiply like mad, even in the dry hot rockery! I have to keep them in check… ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Really enjoyed the garden tour. I love poppies and ferns as well. Shame I don’t have garden myself, here in London, but will be posting soon from my parents’ garden. Thanks for the tour again!

  3. A lovely tour thank you Cathy, now where is my cake? Your garden is looking wonderful, it is so interesting to meander round it. I love all your aquilegias and what a lot of buds you have on your peonies. It is a great idea to do a post like this. I was hoping to do a similar post today but the weather is appalling and so it will have to wait.

    • Chocolate cake okay? (I’ll be posting a photo and recipe soon!) The white peonies are just starting to open Chloris, and they smell so lovely. I shall look forward to a tour of your garden too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Wonderful! Looks like you’ve had much more rain than here. It’s like high summer. Dry and dusty. No rain on the horizon either and everything is flagging. Enjoy the lushness!!

    • We have had quite a few showers in between the sunny May weather, so it’s still looking green… the forecast is “hot” though, so that could all change soon and yes, I must make the most of it now!

  5. Thank you Cathy, I’d love some tea, what cake gave you made for us? Or is it a delicious German tea bread, I love that!!! Your garden is looking lovely and it is nice to be able to link the areas together in my mind now.

    • A chocolate cardamon cake – photo and recipe coming soon… ๐Ÿ˜‰ I have also found the same when other bloggers have given tours too – that it is nice to have everything put into perspective. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • It can be tricky at times Deb. The steep bits get ignored once everything has filled out, as I just can’t get in there to weed, so I am very glad that Teucrium has spread so well to hide the ground elder! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. I enjoyed the guided tour Cathy. What a wonderful garden you’ve created against that fabulous background. How long have you been there now? I’m just going to perch myself on that empty seat now and wait for a cuppa and a slice of carrot cake ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi Anna.It’s been almost ten years now, although the rockery was only cleared the following year and planting started around 2006-2007. I hope chocolate cake suits too… and there’s a choice of tea or coffee, since the Germans traditionally drink coffee in the afternoons! ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. This helps me understand your garden layout and everything is looking so wonderful. You must be pleased as punch. I would be. The pink peony is sheer perfection.

    • I’m glad it gives a better idea of how the garden is set out. It is so hard getting long shots without including the whole house or any ugly bits! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • It’s the dark pinky red flower, already opening bottom left near the blue aquilegias, but covering the entire south rockery! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. How wonderful to get that tour of your garden, Cathy, as I always enjoy taking in the bigger picture! Great planting and in absolute harmony with the surrounding landscape. Love the fern planting especially! Thanks for the tea and cake – it was delicious ๐Ÿ™‚

    • You’re welcome Annette! Thanks for your kind words! The ferns are looking so lush right now – hope they stand the heat for another month or so.

    • Of course! ๐Ÿ˜‰ The ferns are going to suffer in the heat we are getting, so I am glad I could get some pictures early on. Have a good weekend Dorris!

  9. Pingback: Gooey Chocolate and Cardamon Cake | Words and Herbs

  10. Thank you for the tour. You have a most impressive stand of ostrich fern, and so many beautiful views in your garden. I love the sunny bed with the Valerian and Poppies.

  11. Oh Cathy, what a garden you have. The lush plants, the intersection of green lawn with perennials, and the incredible stand of trees, all incredible. You have the gardener’s touch. No wonder you’re able to come up with so many pretty vases. Look at that selection! Thanks for another tour.

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