Bavarian Horticultural Show, Ingolstadt 2021

 

As many of you know already, I live in Bavaria in the south of Germany. Bavaria is one of 16 federal states in Germany, and every year each has their own regional horticultural show. The 2020 show was postponed last year, but took place this year instead, and was in Ingolstadt (known perhaps best for being home to Audi car manufacturers). This is just a 90 minute drive from us, and having lived there for many years I could not miss this opportunity! So I picked up a friend on the way and we made a day of it. 😃

Here are some of my impressions…

There were some long beds of perennials leading off the main square like sun rays and I was impressed with both the dramatic planting and the size and vigour of the plants…

(Click on any photo to enlarge)

A lot of lilies were still flowering, and the combination with Coreopsis, Agastache and Heleniums made quite an impact.

The first asters were also flowering. Grasses played a major role in all the gardens, which appealed to me in particular.

A few beds along pathways were reserved for annuals. And these were amazing!

Color themes were red and orange, orange and blue, or grey and pink…

Some of the small show gardens were really imaginative…

I really loved this view…

 

A few were nothing special, but there was always an element for inspiring, such as the raised bed idea here, and the firepit using decorative stone and paving with a cute little bench…

Inspiration…

Not sure we need one of these…

But one of these is on my wishlist. It rocks gently, and of course we tried it out! 😉

And this grass is on my wishlist too: Panicum virgatum ‘Northwind’…

So many lovely vistas, flowers and ideas…

The show is being held all summer and covers 23 hectares on the edge of the city, with large open expanses, and a small lake on one side. It will remain a park after the show, and will be such a treasure for the city dwellers. I do hope more trees will be planted there, making it into a haven for birds and insects as well as people.  😃

Have you been able to visit a garden show this summer? (I might even visit this one again soon! 😉)

 

Nepal Himalaya Park, Germany: July 2021

Not far from us a wonderful garden nestles on a stony hillside on the edge of the Bavarian Forest and above the River Danube.

Within its grounds stands the Expo 2000 Nepalese Pavilion – a Buddhist Temple and Hindi Stupa all in one. After being dismantled after the exhibition, it was transported here and rebuilt by the Nepalese craftsmen, setting the theme for the garden which has grown up around it. The garden has since been extended a great deal and although it is only open three afternoons a week in the summer months it has become one of the most popular attractions in the region.

There are not many gardens in the south of Germany that are open to the public, and none at all that could be compared with the famous English gardens. So it is always a treat to visit this one which is more like a park than a garden and allows nature to play a hand.

The owner is an avid plant collector and has many unusual plants from the Himalaya region and Asia in general. But there are also native plants, flowers and trees mixed in with the more exotic.

On this particular visit the Hydrangeas were a highlight…

…as well as the Lilies…

…and the gorgeous pale yellow hollyhocks that have popped up everywhere…

Dotted around the grounds are various temples, gates, bridges, bells, prayer wheels, statues and figures that have been brought over from Asia or built in that style.

I like the ones that blend in with the planting best, but they do all add to the atmosphere, which is unique; the buzz of conversation at the entrance gate slowly subsides to a quiet hum as visitors move down past the pond and are drawn into the tranquility of the garden.

There are distinctive areas – the Japanese Garden, the Pond, the Chinese and Herb Gardens and the large area covering an old stone quarry, with bridges and bridge ‘houses’ along a pathway winding its way across, up and down the side of the hill. That is the part of the garden I like best, where nature is allowed to determine which flower or grass may dominate each year.

This year has been very wet and the native Melica ciliata has spread, creating a beautiful effect with the Coreopsis, Euphorbia, Perovskia and Eryngium.


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The temple itself is a focal point, with calming chants played in the background creating a very peaceful place to just sit and take a break. It was built as both a Buddhist temple and Hindu stupa, as a symbol of tolerance and understanding of the two religions.

Regular events raise money for the Nepal Himalaya Foundation established by the owners.

But I was there for the plants. And for inspiration, like this somewhat overgrown and wild spiral bed…

Or this glorious planting combination of spiky leaves, pink phlox and yellow lilies…

My friend and I took hundreds of photos, so this is just a taste of the flair and tranquility this garden has to offer. Hope you enjoyed the mini tour!

😃

https://www.nepal-himalaya-pavillon.de

And a link to a youtube video (only music) made by photographer Tobias Lindenmeir (https://www.naturphoto.net ):

Uprooted (well, almost!)

We live on an exposed hillside, and when it is windy, it is really windy. All my planting decisions take this into account… usually. But for some reason I didn’t apply this to the annual sunflowers in The ‘Edge. They all have large buds already and were looking so good and sturdy earlier this week…

 

About 20 sunflowers and Tithonia are planted between the shrubs and perennials in The ‘Edge.

Well, one night we had yet another thunderstorm, but accompanied by extremely strong winds…. I spent a good hour the following morning rescuing and staking them all! With all the rain we have had the ground is so soft that they were almost uprooted. Luckily the stems were thick enough and I could save them all by stamping them back into the ground and putting in sturdy tomato canes and bamboo canes to help them stay upright.

They looked much better a day or two later. I am looking forward to seeing them in bloom. 😃 Do you stake your sunflowers?

I hope that the wind will stay at bay for a while, but the weather patterns seem set for the summer… heat and humidity, then thunderstorms with wind and rain, then a couple of cooler days in between, repeat. 🙃

My title also refers to our new family member… Anouk. Rescued from living rough in a port in Greece she was brought to us last weekend to spend her retirement here.

This wasn’t actually planned, but we think it will work out. Poor Anouk is no doubt feeling uprooted too. But what’s worse is that she is petrified of thunderstorms. So she had a tough time the first few days and we are hoping there won’t be too many more rumbles of thunder this summer.

How is your summer developing? I have heard of heatwaves in the north west of the US and in Canada, and a rather chilly spell in the UK.

Whatever the weather, happy gardening!