A Garden Walk

In Corona times May 2020

The blue flowers in the foreground are allium. A couple of red hot pokers to the left. And the lilac bushes with the manor behind

I am taking you on a tour around our garden and into our park and meadows. However, as the Covid-19 is surrounding us, it has to be an imaginary walk. We have had the privilege of owning Knightstone Manor for 20 years now (in December), and it is amazing how much has grown and changed since I first came. 

I have placed this series of photos in my collection of portfolios, where I showcase my best photos. But are they that special as photos? Are they art? Maybe not in themselves, but they show an artist in action. The artist is Lewis Atkin, my estate manager and gardener, who has now been with Knightstone since 2003. He has created a most beautiful and interesting garden, full of variety but respectful of the heritage that Colonel Reginald Cooper has given us in his originally laid out gardens in the nineteen forties. And we have converted the surrounding fields into parkland and flower meadows considerate of the old history of the Manor and not introducing anything in the meadows that Lady Jane Grey wouldn’t be able to find on her walks in the fields!

Hawthorn

I will take you on a tour starting in the courtyard and then to the top of the stream and following it downstream. We will do a detour to the South Field, where the sheep have got lambs that are grazing now. and then we go to the Rose Garden (but this time of the year we have more rhododendron than roses!).

We will go back along the North Wing of the Manor to the stairs that lead to the Wildflower Meadow, which has changed considerably during the last years. And then we enter the park, where we planted more than a thousand trees some years back. We can now walk in tunnels in the woodland, where before it was open fields and come to exciting copses and see lots of wildflowers before turning back to Knightstone and walk up towards the front entrance.

Alongside the stream is viburnum (the white flowering bush) and red rhododendrons

The photos were all taken this third week of May. We have been blessed by lovely spring weather, and I had some enjoyable days with camera, lenses and tripod. In the captions I am telling you a little of the plants we are seeing. If you watch the slide show on a mobile phone, you cannot see the captions, so I highly recommend you having an iPad or a computer to watch the images. 

If you are impressed by my knowledge of the different plants, I have to admit that Lewis was sitting next to me at my computer, when I was writing about the trees, shrubs and flowers. 

Welcome to our garden and park paying homage to Colonel Reginald Cooper, who planned the garden, and Lewis, who has developed it with such great taste.

Slideshow. Click on Arrows to advance

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  • 004-200516-KM-104-JE
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  • 006-200522-KM-010-JE
  • The bluetit is leaving his nest to catch some food. Photo: Lewis
  • 008-200516-KM-106-JE
  • Underneath the cherry grows a red rhododendron
  • 010-200520-KM-003-JE
  • 011-200520-KM-005-JE
  • 012-200520-KM-006-JE
  • 013-200520-KM-022-JE
  • Spring is lambing season and the lambs have grown fast
  • They are both cute and curious
  • 016-200520-KM-043-JE
  • 017-200520-KM-008-JE
  • 018-200520-KM-010-JE
  • 019-200520-KM-012-JE
  • 020-200520-KM-016-JE-HDR
  • We continue our walk and turn right around the yew hedges into the rose garden
  • 022-200515-KM-012-JE
  • More rhododendron
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  • The white lilac bush again with the red peonies in the foreground.
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  • 027-200516-KM-117-JE
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  • Eric sitting on the bench looking out over the meadow
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  • Eric is walking back nearly disappearing in the meadow
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  • Hawthorn blooms
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  • Looking down into the park with the stream to the left
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  • Rhododendrons in the park
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  • Bluebells in the park
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  • The view from the bench towards the manor
  • More buttercups
  • Red campions at the end of the park walk
  • Foxgloves. Digitalis
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  • Walking up the entrance between the yew hedges protecting the formal gardens.
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