Walking in a Woodland Wonderland

Walk along the tempting pathways. Dappled sunlight and bright foliage are everywhere. Just now the bluebells are out, they are fewer this year. Last year that the very air above them shimmered and they dissolved the daylight into a blue haze.
Instead of the blue we have a green lightness through the woods. The leaves of the rowans and birch are still fresh and salad green; the crosiers of the emerging ferns are elegant and beautiful. The oaks are a glistening bronzed green and out before the ash

Oak before Ash we are in for a splash
Ash before Oak we are in for a soak.

Good it is splash this year. , the ash are scarcely moving, even now in late May.
Throughout our woodland garden we have kept many native plants, but everywhere there are highlights and delights.
The subtle beauty of Solomon’s seal, tellima and the lovely sculptured form of emerging hostas. Hardy geraniums everywhere, but I particularly like the Irish Blue and Kashmir White at this time. Time for the pinks and magentas later.
Then there are bright islands of colour in the lighter glades. The Rhododendrons are magnificent these year and some of the large leaved forms that we have planted have done really well and are beginning to become a wonderful feature. And soon my favourites the deciduous azaleas will bloom…….. Golden Eagle, Fireball, Irene Koster and for the best scent of all, I am planting lots of Azalea luteum, the old fashioned yellow azalea found on many old estates.
Evergreens, that were very frightened by the winter are starting to shake off the brown disconsolate look; pieris has been wonderful, but osmanthus, eucryphia and even some Ilex have been very unhappy, they are much better now. It is a relief to see their new glossy leaves.


  1. Any theories about why you have less bluebells this year? We're getting blown away down here. How is it up and around Loch Ness?

  2. Hostas are one of my favourite plants I like the one which you show us today, pity about the slugs. Mind you planting in containers seems to do the trick.

  3. Why less Bluebells?

    Well sometimes after a bumper year, any plant has a year off, and I am just presuming that is the case with the bluebells as they were so magnificent last year.

    They are also very late and slow coming this year. We lost our spring on May 1st and have not seen it since
    I will hold my breath for a great show next year.

    I agree about the hostas Alistair, such fabulous foliage, our latest trial was a variety called Catherine - really lovely.


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