Gordon and Judith Rae’s garden is perfect for showing off snowdrops: many are planted in terraces, which are at waist height, so no going down on one’s knees. There were clumps of snowdrops everywhere, too many to count but we will take Gordon’s word for it that there were at least 150 different varieties, all clearly labelled.
The snowdrops were at their best, and a walk crisscrossing the large garden perfectly illustrated the different shapes, sizes and colour marks among the species. Interspersed between the bulbs were beautiful hellebores and small, colourful cyclamen, all set against “50 shades of green”.
Gill and Liz
were amongst the helpers providing tea and biscuits, which also offered an
opportunity to admire the capsule exhibition of specimen snowdrops, and to
catch up with the many other Grayshott Gardeners members and visitors.
had been postponed from early February, due to snow, but proved well worth the
A packed village hall eagerly awaited the arrival of Nick Bailey, a little later than expected, due to a delay at Waterloo Station caused by an incident on the line. After the warm-up act comprising Gill (upcoming events), Vanessa (Hidden Gardens 2019) and Gordon (Snowdrop viewing on Saturday), the audience was well-primed to warmly welcome Nick Baily, horticulturalist, author, award-winning TV presenter and garden designer.
Nick spent part of his
extensive and varied 15-year career as Head Gardener at Chelsea Physic Garden, which
has its own micro-climate, which Nick
took full advantage of when redesigning the gardens and diversifying the plant
collection. A visit is definitely recommended.
Continuing with the main theme of colour (usually against a general background of nearly 90% green foliage) Nick then told us how to add colour by interplanting, and contrasting or harmonising colours. He identified the gardener’s colour wheel as a useful aid for pinpointing nuances of colour.
All this led up to a series of slides showing colourful flowers and plants taken from his best-selling book 365 Days of Colour, which has tips as well as lists of plants which will provide year-round colour in our gardens.