Sunday, 20 December 2009

Dreaming of a White Christmas

I woke up to this scene on Friday morning. The French garden was as pretty as a picture. The winter garden looked like a scene from Scandinavia rather than Bedfordshire!

Ho,ho,ho! All that snow, meant no gardening this weekend. Instead it was a weekend when Jonathan and Sarah and Suzie came home. We went into our neighbours forest and chose our Christmas tree, then carried it home and decked it out with lights and baubels.

Happy Christmas to all who kindly follow this blog and lets hope for some happy gardening moments to share in 2010. But I may well be back before the 31st!

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Boogie Woogie Jazz

Its fun to see the Mondrian Garden as night falls when the LED lights begin to cast their coloured light and shadows. I call it my Boogie Woogie Dance Floor complete with Manhatten towers made of Calamagrostis 'Overdam'. I last wrote about this on November 6th 2008, just a few months after it was completed and planted; the photograph looks so different now that the grasses have matured.

Friday, 11 December 2009

The Cradle of Law in Hare Court

I was invited to create a new garden design for Hare Court, next Temple Church in the Inner Temple. One could scarcely be given a more historic site!

We quickly cleared the dark ugly conifers and replaced them with pockets of yew to create simple organic domes of dark and golden green; four white stemmed trees were planted to commemorate the lives of Nicholas Hare and his three brothers, all of whom belonged to the Inn during the latter half of the sixteenth century and after whom the Courtyard was named. A new path was added in Purbeck stone to echo those laid after the Great Fire in 1666.

Then we invited Tanya Russell to design a sculpture reflecting the space and she chose the concept of cuppped hands cradling the law and she named it 'Justice'. The yews and trees are beginning to make more impact now and as they grow they will soften the courtyard and provide a soft, sinuous cushion for this powerful piece of contemporary art. What a wonderful project to be involved with!

Thursday, 3 December 2009

Rosemary Flower Risotto

This was a floral feast for early December! Melting risotto, beautiful soft Queen scallops, a handful of peas and a few snatches of spinach made this a memorable dish for Sunday lunch with family and friends.
BUT, here's the floral twist! Add to all that creamy softness, a scattering of aromatic (like the herb itself) pale blue blooms of rosemary and a sprinkling of tasty (like aniseed) bronze fennel flowers. Both of these are still in flower, in my edible flower border, even though winter is fast closing in. The result: a dish fit for any occasion where texture, fragrance, colour, vision and above all taste come together in a miraculous way.