Six On Saturday: Spring at Holehird Gardens

Mum and I called in at Holehird Gardens in the English Lake District this week to see what Spring had brought so far. I’ve written about Holehird before, here and here, but today I’m joining in with The Propagator’s Six on Saturday. I had thought that the ‘Six’ had to come from your own garden, but the helpful participant guide says six things from a garden visit are also welcome, so without further ado:

1. Chionodoxa (Glory of the snow)

Blue star shaped flowers with white centres

Blue and pink Chionodoxa were at their peak in and around the rock garden. We were a little early to catch the daffodil field in full flower – I’d guess it was a week or so off looking its best.

2. Fritillaria michailovskyi

Bell-shaped dark maroon flowers with bright yellow tips

A visit to a garden is always a treasure hunt, so I was happy to spot a few of these, hidden away just past the hellebores, not far from a small clump of Fritillaria meleagris. The bell-shaped flowers are an unusual colour combination – rich purple-brown with bright yellow tips.  Continue reading

Holehird Gardens: A Peek Inside A Walled Garden

Holehird: Inside the Walled Garden

There are so many excellent reasons to visit the English Lake District, but if you love plants, make Holehird Gardens part of the road taken – you won’t regret it. Holehird is home to The Lakeland Horticultural Society, and has an unusual commercial model. The members tend the gardens themselves, which means that visitors who don’t feel able to pay can be offered free parking and entry, though a donation to help with upkeep is much appreciated.

While there’s much more to Holehird than ‘just’ a walled garden, it’s this that draws me back. I can rarely resist the chance to see flowers tumbling together in a beautiful setting. Weathered brick walls provide shelter, make a backdrop for the plants and support several climbers, including roses and clematis.  Continue reading

The View Towards Windermere From Holehird Gardens

View of the Lake District from Holehird Gardens

Every time I visit a garden, I’m on a quest. Gardeners and photographers will understand. Unlike most quests, there’s no one goal: I’m open to enjoying whatever I find. I love flowers of all kinds so my attention might be caught by a demure woodland plant, shyly lifting a few flowers above its foliage, or a cottage garden classic at the peak of perfection. I rarely miss anything at my feet.

These days, I try to remind myself to lift up my eyes and take in the overall impression of the garden too. These are the pictures that really convey the individual magic of a place. Pictures of flowers can sometimes feel a bit disembodied so it’s nice to be able to give them a beautiful context.

I hope you enjoy the hillside view from one of my favourite spots, Holehird Gardens in Windermere, Cumbria.