On Friday, we needed a change of scenery and decided to walk around the peaceful gardens at Apple Court, near Hordle on the southern edge of the New Forest. This garden is set within the old walled kitchen garden of nearby Yeatton House. It has been created since 1988 and has plants which provide interest throughout the seasons.
"The garden was designed as a series of interlocking areas each of which was intended to create a distinct visual impression and to have a microclimate well suited to the particular plants intended to grow in each. The form of the garden was partly dictated by the need to break the force of the coastal winds, the sea being less than a mile away." Excerpt from the Apple Court Nursery and Garden Information Leaflet. The Nursery at Apple Court specialises in ornamental grasses and hemerocallis (day lilies).
Walking around the garden "rooms" in late August gave us an opportunity to see the combinations of flowers, ornamental grasses, shrubs and trees which give the garden a luxuriant softness in the late summer light.
These young, ornamental silver birches with bright , white bark, looked lovely with their underplanting of santolina and a background of softer pinks and greens.
Mature clumps of grasses, catching the light.
An unusual greenish white "red hot poker" growing through an old rose.
Flowers on the Indian Bean Tree........
....and under the tree, in the corner of the old garden wall, was a door straight out of "The Secret Garden".
In the White Garden, sculpted cranes centre the lawn, which is surrounded by "an ellipse of pleached hornbeam", behind which there are year round flowers and foliage of white, against a background of dark green yew.
Through a gap in the flowers, a little boy sits reading his never ending book.
Behind tall hedges is the Japanese Garden, where we stood in the wooden tea house, watching huge carp swimming like coloured submarines in sunlit green water.
Three square ponds, where smaller fish swim and yellow waterlilies grow.
In their shady corner of the garden, a family of Croad Langshan chickens wander and investigate beneath the shrubs for food. The beautiful, glossy black cockerel accompanied his wives........
and joined them to rest and bask in the warm sunshine.
Before we drove home, we chose a few more plants for our own garden from the good variety of healthy and unusual plants for sale in the Nursery. Now we have to decide where to plant them!
Apple Court`s own website is at www.applecourt.com
Living in the beautiful New Forest, I am a married late-fifties woman, a recently retired teacher and the mother of grown up boys who have flown the nest. I share my days with cats, dogs, ponies and the wildlife all around us. Starting this blog is a chance to explore woods, fields, lanes and heath with my camera. A chance to share the simple pleasures of my country life.