Having discovered the taste of bay leaves a year or so ago, I have been on the look-out for a bay tree for some time. The issue has been the cost: usually, the trees seem to be sold when they are two or even three feet tall, which undoubtedly explains the £20-40 on the price tag.
However, yesterday I came across a supplier of herb plants, when I was at a garden event being held by the Royal Horticultural Society at Harlow Carr in Harrogate. Garth Cottage Herbs had a diddy tree at a cost of only £4.50. Wonderful!
This tree already has enough leaves to keep us going. In fact, I can’t imagine ever running out if this is what a young tree can provide.
The man who sold me the tree also gave me some advice regarding its maintenance. Not that it appears to be a difficult job. In essence, the tree will survive temperatures down to just above -20°C. It of course needs to be well watered and at the same time there needs to be plenty of drainage. As for pruning, anything goes apparently.
So, now the tree adorns my patio and I hope it will do so for many years to come.
Apart from the excitement of my purchase, I enjoyed looking round the gardens. We do go there on a regular basis, and it being a garden there are always new things to see. And I always notice something new.
This teapot seems to be for making leaf mould. Imagine having one of these in your garden?
Now that I am moving towards having a flower garden as well as a vegetable patch, I also wanted to note the names of the plants that I found particularly attractive. We didn’t have time to do as much of this as I would have liked but here are a couple of specimens:
The bush in the above photo is Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’. I am not sure where I would put this but I will have to find one to buy, in any case. The other plant I was particularly taken with was the Thrift (shown below). I do have lots of rocks in my garden and, although I had not been planning to have a rockery, it would make sense to turn them into an attractive feature with flowers like these.
Anyway, here are some scenic shots of the gardens:
Do you have a favourite garden near you? If so, what is it like?
© Helen Butt, July 2013.