Instead of going to the Chelsea Flower Show I visited the Monet Exhibition.
I have looked at his paintings many times before.
However, I now have the added interest of trying to paint myself.
What caught my imagination was the use of colour.
The views of the Thames were alive with colourful skies.
Later ,reflections of cliffs in sea water provided another point of interest.
Landscapes showed areas of light and dark.
We often dismiss the familiar without giving it proper attention.
This was true of my view of Monet.
This exhibition showed me that you can continue to learn from a great artist.
You need to look at their work again and again with renewed interest.
Yesterday I had a wonderful surprise when I visited The Walled Garden at Clumber Park Notts.
This is a gem that I had not visited.
They have recently renovated the Victorian Green house, which must be on of the longest in the country.
Displays of old machinery are mixed with a variety of fruit trees along the walls.
Outside the garden has both plant borders and orchards.
A friend was fascinated by the ‘step over” fruit trees.
When you need a break the Gardener’s house will provide good food in a perfect setting.
We all need special days in our lives.
A visit to The Kitchen Garden at Clumber Park is a must for this.
After a delayed Spring things are growing fast in the garden.
This is matched by my recovery from illness.
It is a case of starting the day out in the garden.
This may be looking at what is happening or getting to work.
Tulips have finished.
They can be removed from pots to make way for summer flowering plants.
I leave them in a place to finish off growth.
Later ~I will store the bulbs for next year.
Meanwhile Stocks, Antirrhinums and Wallflowers make a good display.
This year I bought new Hellebores to bring on.
In the borders I have many colours of Geraniums.
These look super with Aquilegias.
Bluebells add to the display.
The Bird Cherry is full of flowers.
I hope that I have painted a picture of a truly lovely Spring Garden.
The sun is out and it is going to be a good weekend.
Because of the recent bad weather , the jobs in the garden have been piling up.
Now is a chance to get them done.
Washing down the patio to get rid of grime.
Spraying roses to stop bugs eating them up.
Perhaps renovating patio furniture ready for the good weather.
Bringing in spent tulip plants and replacing them with new plants.
I am going to make a second attempt with Sweet Peas.
Dead heading flowers on the Camillia.
However, as we have waited so long for some sun, do not forget to make time to enjoy it.
It is a long time since i sat here.
Illness has taken a great deal of my energy.
However, back on course now.
The tulips have come out. So has the Epimedium.
Grape hyacinths come in blue and white.
I wonder if there will be a rush of colour as plants catch up.
Temperatures are starting to rise.
Buds are on the apple tree.
We feel happy .
Especially when we can get outdoors again.
I have chosen a colour paint indoors to match that of the honesty!!
Plants can be a great starting point for other activities.
So let your imagination run riot!
An injury has forced me to stay indoors this week.
However, it has given me an opportunity to plan outings.
This year I hope to stay near at home to extend my gardening knowledge.
NTU has a special unit to help people with learning difficulties.
The Flower Pod has invited Christine Walkden to give a talk in March.
I now have an interest in Vegetable Gardening.
Charles Dowding is giving a talk in April on “No dig veg”.
I have researched three more gardens to visit.
Elli car Gardens near Doncaster has beautiful borders and a Natural Pool for swimming.
Welford Park near Newbury and Brodsworth Hall near Sheffield
are worth a visit.
There is no need to feel down when the weather is cild.
Use the time to make plans.
The collapse of Carillon is much in the news.
Perennial has offered to help anybody in the horticulture and landscaping industry that needs help.
A good friend indeed.
I made a good contact this week.
As I sat having a cup of tea in a favourite tea shop I talked to two people who had a small holding in Derbyshire.
We exchanged info on gardens to visit.
They told me about Rhubarb farm in Derbyshire . This is a community Project
It does local veg boxes, educational visits and much more.
I have been contacted about the Belvoir Flower show in July.
Tickets are now on sale.
As i have often said , we need others to help us on our way.
Gardeners make good friends for this purpose.
It is worth catching the 6.30 am train from Newark to go to Kent .
This week the workshop was home to 400 people. The largest ever .
The title was Podium DeckingPlanting.
The most imaginative example of this is the Bosco Verticale in Milan.
Tower blocks can now be livened up with super planting.
I saw the Barbican planting scheme with Nigel Dunnet a couple of years back.
He is such an enthusiastic gardener/professor.
Dan Pearson made us quite sad with his images of the Garden Bridge that is now consigned to history.
Beside the talks ,it is super to meet old friend and have a great day.
My enthusiasm will keep me going for the next few months!
Book by visiting www.annesmithdesigns.co.ukrhs.org.uk/shows