I've been avidly watching the developments on Weather Hill over the last couple of years. And now I'm almost lost for words. It's breathtaking. (Click on the images for a larger picture)
The Bowes-Lyon Rose Garden is our new centrepiece, and it's just opened fully for the first time. There are 1000s of roses here, and 1000s more herbaceous plants, and the mix of the two is really spectacular. In my humble opinion it's the soft yellow Achillea 'Credo' AGM that stands out - so much so I had to go and buy some for my own garden (available in the Plant Centre, but heavily in demand!).
There is also a variety of different shrubs supporting garden, to offer all year structure and interest, including yew, buddleia and the lovely, dark Sambucus 'Black Lace'. Magnolias, Cornus kousa and Catalpa and Malus reflect the mature, established trees that have lived on Weather Hill for many years.
Sumptious, thick, deep, lush, healthy, inviting. Just want to lie on it. What? The grass. It was laid last year as turf with mycorrhizal fungi (special fungi that helps plant roots in the soil) and watered well while it established, and now looks... well, I've already described it. The depth of green sets the colours of the garden off superbly, all the better for not being trimmed too short.
If you stand at the top by the pavilion, there is a stepped, straight path that leads down to our brand new AGM Borders (I'll blog about those another week), and a curved path that sweeps down to the left under the mature Catalpa - looking stunning in flower at the moment and offering some cooling shade - down to Weather Hill Cottage. In between there are small connecting paths, so everyone can wander through at their leisure, looking closely at the plants.
And that's just what I've witnessed. Everyone seems to love this garden. Everyone is smiling when they pass through, commenting on their favourite flowers, or the planting combinations they want to try in their own gardens.