This year it’s too easy for gardens to be on trend, the Pantone colour of the year being Greenery. Well… yes, I’ll go with that, but if Pantone’s colour trend experts think greenery is the colour for 2017, perhaps they should get out more. Hardly a passing trend, greenery should be named the colour of the millennium (in the hope it might, by some miracle, be the millennium to come, not the one we’ve recently left behind).
Bodnant Gardens, where these pictures were taken, had acknowledged the colour of the year with a knowing wink, but decided greenery was just the start. It was a great start – no one could deny that – but the surrounding countryside had got greenery off to a T too. So much so that after finally leaving the North Wales Expressway (an optimistic name on a very sunny Sunday) I found myself winding towards the National Trust garden along Llanrwst Road thinking “This land is such a bright green, it’s almost too much. How will the camera lens cope with this? Are my sunglasses not on?” (they were).
Inside the garden spring had sprung. Not content with greenery, the garden was adrip with flowers, as if it had taken a look at the colour palettes on the Pantone website and had decided to Rev It Up.
If Bodnant was a supermodel, daffodils and blossom would be on the cover of every newspaper and fashion magazine. My iPhone was struggling with the brightness, so you may find it difficult to make out the amount of blossom on the tree in the picture above. But this wasn’t a day to wish for a heavy DSLR plus lens and a neutral density filter – it was made for roaming around by the rivers and waterfalls, climbing paths marked ‘steep’ and exploring as much of the garden as you could squeeze in.
I’m concentrating on the daffs and the blossom in the hope that someone reading this post will be tempted and able to go and see the garden while all this beauty is on offer. I know the garden wisely provides visitors with so many other riches at various times of the year – the famous laburnum arch and the rose garden being not the least – but in future, when I think of the essence of spring, my thoughts will turn to Bodnant.
I tried to get a decent picture of the magnificent tree in full bloom you see below, despite the bright sunlight, but can’t say I’m happy with the results. I’m including it anyway as it’s a sight I never want to forget. Wouldn’t it be lovely if we each had one of these in our neighbourhood?
I’d have liked to linger till the garden closed, particularly as the light was showing signs of softening off, but something was calling me: one of my Mother’s excellent dinners was on offer just over 100 miles away. So I had to dash. Life-enhancing as they are, no one can live by daffodils and blossom alone.
Bodnant Gardens contact details
Address: Bodnant Gardens, Bodnant Road, Tal-y-cafyn, Conwy, North Wales LL28 5RE
Overseas visitors with a love of historic properties and gardens may be able to save money with a National Trust touring pass (check out the details online). National Trust and members of the Royal Oak Foundation have free entry.