Thursday, September 25, 2014

England's Flowers In September


In my luggage, I made sure that I took plenty of long sleeve shirts and an umbrella for our trip to England.  I shouldn't have bothered.  The weather was sunny and dry but the daytime highs were not TOO high.  It was perfect walking weather.  And the flowers!  It was truly the end of summer there and the flowers were beautiful.

So, my very first impression of England in September was of flowers...


The dahlias in this front garden were incredible!

 

The flower beds along the Eastbourne seafront are called The Carpet Gardens and they were amazing!  I looked at an open top bus as it was stopped in traffic and all were enjoying the view of the flowers.  One of the young women on the bus gave me the sweetest smile, both of us saying a lot in our smiles- our joy of the day viewing this lovely sight! 

"There is just one moon and one golden sun,
And a smile means friendship to everyone,
Though the mountains are wide and the oceans are wide,
It's a small world after all".      Robert and Richard Sherman

There were quite a few times on this trip, I actually said those words, "It's a small world".

 
 
 
The Carpet Gardens- Eastbourne
 

 
We saw black-eyed susans in a few gardens but the BEST ones were at the home of Richard's parents!  Venus de Milo blew over once in a heavy wind, so Peter (my wonderful father-in-law!) tied some garden twine around her waist and told her to hang on! 


The hydrangeas were beautiful.  I love this flower.  Most of them in Georgia bloom in June and they are almost always blue.  In England, they are almost always pink and they actually become like dry flowers as they are on the stalk, if you see what I mean.  They were in so many gardens! I loved them.   Look at these white flowers!  Not sure what they are, but I love how they look in this garden.

There were some incredible hanging baskets of flowers in Eastbourne and in London and I will share those with you in another post.  Richard took all of these photos in this post and I hope you have enjoyed our first impressions of England - the flowers!

47 comments:

  1. Dear Kay, I didn't know you'd been here...we could have met up in London!! Glad you had a lovely time, we certainly have been lucky with the weather this year...although it is definitely turning chilly now x

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    1. Oh Rachel, how wonderful it would have been to meet you! I will remember and contact you the next time I visit, I know we could have a good old "natter" over a cuppa! xx

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  2. The flowers were just gorgeous. Here most are looking pretty forlorn. I was delighted when a sun flower grew up on it's own and surprised me with it's sunny face. Glad you had such nice weather for your visit.

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    1. We would call that sunflower a "volunteer" and those are the best, because they are unexpected and very much appreciated! The birds are very often the ones who bring those seeds into the garden...wonderful birds!

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  3. Well they're certainly much more impressive than the little flowers in my garden in the middle of England. If you enjoy flowers then do yourself a favour and check out the Chelsea Flower Show.

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    1. Oh yes, I am familiar with the Chelsea Flower Show. I think I would like to see it but honestly, if I don't, that's okay too! I really just like the normal gardens that regular folks have!

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  4. Great display of flowers Kay. The Parks and Recreation squads in the UK are real unsung heroes as they must plant out all the beds at least four times a year with seasonal displays. Spring, summer, autumn, winter. This year has been a good one weather wise with no major summer downpours or storms to flatten or wash out the beds once installed. Used to work in the P and R Department myself when younger. Big effort for little money but instant job satisfaction when you see the results :o) Nice photos.

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    1. Funny you should say that, there was a patch that had already been pulled out...Richard thought that we might be lucky to see these late summer beds, since it looked as if they were about to pull them up so as to install the autumn flowers! I have fond memories of seeing the folks work on them, and seeing the lovely Sussex trugs that they used (this would have been 1985). I wonder if they still use them?


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  5. Oh, those flowers!! Europe has wonderful flowers in late summer. Here in Georgia (as you well know) everything starts looking a little tired in August from the heat. Those are some gorgeous photos!! When I was a teen, I went to language school in Bournemouth for a couple of summers. At an age when flowers were not something to impress me, I still remember the abundance of hydrangeas. :) xoxo Silke

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    1. Yes, our Georgia heat is a real killer for flowers! Richard does better with pots, that way, we can move them around when the heat is too intense!
      I like the sound of an abundance of hydrangeas...that is just what it was like!!

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  6. I was in London for two weeks in Nov 1969 and it was so dank and cold.
    I would love to visit England again in the summer and see the flowers.

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    1. Dank and cold! HA! I know what that feels like in England too! That might make the summer flowers all that more special and precious!

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  7. your flowers are just gorgeous! i could feel refreshed just looking at them!

    your blog is so beautiful, too.
    happy thursday!
    betty

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    1. Hello Betty!
      I tried to think of where I have seen your blog name and then, I looked at Dennis' blog and there was your comment!
      Thanks very much for your sweet comment here, I appreciate it!

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  8. Oh, the Carpet Gardens are just beautiful! September would be a great month to visit England.

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    1. It was a great month in 2014 anyway! :-)

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  9. The white flowers next to the hydrangeas are called ALYSSUM. It looks lovely when used in hanging baskets or large pots with pansies. I used them all the time in Sussex but had forgotten about them - must use them next summer - you can get them in pink and blue too.

    Sussex is known for the beach side carpet gardens. Lovely pictures. When I get there in November they will have all gone - could be snowy or more likely rainy!

    Glad you had a lovely time. x

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    1. We have alyssum too, I just could not think of it when I wrote that post, I was so tired! We had them growing up, I remember that flower next to bright yellow marigolds, really pretty!
      Even in November, you can still walk beside the sea. I went paddling in the sea when I was there. Will you do that in November? I dare you!
      HA! xx

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  10. I'm always blown away by the gardens in England, makes me want to get home and plant away. Love your pix.

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    1. Like you, the gardens just take my breath away...and I don't mean the gardens at a castle but just the everyman's kind of garden and just one small plant or pot beside a doorway can make such a statement of beauty!

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  11. These are so beautiful! Here in ne Ohio gardens are rather unkempt by this time of year, though my begonias are doing well...My grandmother always grew beautiful sweet alyssum, but I've never done well with them, or them for me....The dahlias just sing to my heart. I may have to grow some again next year!

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    1. Oh! Those dahlias! They were magnificent, truly they were!!
      Richard has some outstanding begonias that he has kept alive in a pot for several years. I am thankful that we had someone water while we were gone, otherwise, they would not have made it for another year!

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  12. Lovely! Dahlias are among my favourite flowers; there are some truly amazing ones in a garden I walk past every day on my way to work. And the yellow flowers are the same ones that my neighbour has in her garden, as seen here:
    http://librarianwithsecrets.blogspot.de/2014/09/september-selection.html
    Hydrangeas here are often pink, but sometimes blue or white. I've been told the colour depends on how acid the soil they grow in is.
    My grandma had them in her front garden. A friend of hers used to ask her to leave the flower heads on their stalks until they really were dry. She then went in with a pair of scissors and cut off the most beautiful heads, spray-painted them gold and silver and used them for Advent and Christmas decorations.

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    1. I LOVE dried hydrangea blooms! I have also seen them painted in that way for Christmas and I think I it is a lovely idea.
      These dahlias that we saw in the English gardens looked like something that should have been for sale at a florist's! They were just perfect!
      Yes, I have read that the soil is what makes the color of the hydrangeas...we must have the opposite kind of soil in Georgia!

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  13. Just beautiful!
    That looks like alyssum, but it's much taller than the ones I grow.

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    1. I am with you, I thought it looked like it, but it was so tall! The alyssum seems to be much lower growing, maybe it is just the kind that we have here, heck, I don't know! :-)

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  14. Beautiful gardens one and all. Such beauty can't but help lift one's spirits and brighten the day.

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  15. Your lovely pictures remind me of a song I first heard sung by Jimmie Rodgers:
    How many kinds of sweet flowers grow
    In an English country garden?
    We'll tell you now of some that we know
    Those we miss you'll surely pardon
    Daffodils, heart's ease and flox
    Meadowsweet and lady smocks
    Gentian, lupine and tall hollihocks
    Roses, foxgloves, snowdrops, blue forget-me-nots
    In an English country garden

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    1. Oh I know this song! I have it somewhere on one of my posts! I do love an English garden, I truly do!

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  16. How nice that the weather cooperated and the flowers bloomed! Gardens full of flowers always look like the earth smiling to me.

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    1. Like the earth smiling to me...I like that!

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  17. Love these photos. They make me homesick. The reason for the colour of the hydrangeas is the soil. Alkaline soil makes them colour and acid soil makes them the other. I can never remember which is responsible for pink blooms and which for blue blooms, but a gardening book could probably tell you.

    As one of your readers pointed out, the white flowers are alyssum. It's an annual and you can buy packets of seed and sprinkle them in your garden. Many times though, they self-seed and come back year after year. I have a raised bed by my family room French doors, and the alyssum comes back year after year, to bloom in a frothy white cloud. They're quite easy to grow and don't require any special treatment, so next spring, you should go for it! xoxox

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    1. Ha! I love the idea of just sprinkling seeds in my garden! We have rock like red Georgia clay and you have to improve soil before you can put seeds in the ground! We do better in pots, that way...not as much soil and then, we can move the pots around! I will remember alyssum though and if we have some next year, I will think of you! xx

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  18. I wish I had known you were there, so I could give you a grumpy welcome as folks normally receive!t

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    1. Oh, don't worry, I had a very grumpy goodbye from a woman working at London/Gatwick when we left! She was fine until she heard my American accent, and then, she was nasty!

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    2. My Mother!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      At last I've found you!

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    3. If that grumpy lady was your mother, you can have her!

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  19. Oh to have a garden like that to enjoy every day! So beautiful and lush.

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  20. All so beautiful! Glad you and Richard got to visit at such a beautiful time of year!!!

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    1. We were very lucky with the weather. In fact, it could have been cooler for us, we walked a lot and got pretty hot at times! :-)

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  21. Hi Kay

    It was soooooooo good to see you and Rick earlier this month. I guess that by now you are back in the groove and working hard etc.

    Although it is a bit cooler than when you were here, the weather is still dry and sunny with no rain forecast for the week ahead.

    By the by, I noticed the quotation by thickethouse of the opening line of what is probably Springsteen's greatest song.

    Take care

    Henry

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    1. Hey Henry!
      It was great to see you and Sarah and your Mum & Dad!
      Hope they made it back in time to see The Last Night of the Proms!
      We saw the ending and you know I sang along!!
      You will have to tell me the quotation that you mean by Springsteen, you are probably more a fan than I am! (Sorry, Bruce, I am sure he will be heartbroken when he reads this, I am certain he is a BIG fan of my blog. HA!)

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  22. Shame on you Kay re Springsteen!

    It is Youngstown and, so powerful is the song, that I would like to visit the 'Monongahela Valley and the Mesabi iron range' when I am next in the US.

    By the (another) by, we watched a programme last night about a spate of murders in Griffin, Georgia, in 1988 and a couple of the contributors had to have subtitles! I understood it all fine but the production company weren't taking any chances.

    H

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    1. I am all about the melody with my songs, so that leaves out Springsteen on my playlist!
      Funny you should say that about the subtitles. It is because of the Southern accent I am sure...we get ridiculed quite a bit, although, like you I don't think it is THAT hard to understand. That is why I loved Elvis, he had a real Southern accent, and he never tried to change it or apologize for it!
      I don't know about those murders in Griffin...I will have to look it up.

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  23. Ooooooooh WOW! I do love gardens. That carpeted garden is just amazing. I love all the colors. We went to England in March so there weren't many flowers at all then.

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