"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Friday, 27 April 2012

St Giles, Baddesley and Packwood

I had a day out with a friend towards the end of last week - we were very lucky with the weather as heavy rain had been forecast and there were dark rain clouds constantly on the horizon but we escaped with just the odd drizzly rain shower.

We stopped off first at St Giles Church, Packwood, as I wanted to show my friend the primroses.

Yellow Archangel flowering amongst the ancient gravestones

A blue Wood Anemone - I would imagine this has been planted by someone - its difficult in churchyards to know which are truly wildflowers and which have been planted.

I think these are leaves of Wild Arum by the Primrose. Wild Arum has a range of descriptive names such as Lords and Ladies, Cuckoo Pint, Jack in the Pulpit, Parson and Clerk etc. and I will try and return to take photos later in the year showing the part of the plant which results in such names!

Bluebells are starting to flower

and, although the primrose display is not as stunning as a few weeks back, there are still plenty in flower.

I recently read an article in "Countryfile" Magazine on the wildlife to be found in churchyards and it mentioned this book. Sadly, as its a lovely informative book with charming illustrations, I think it is out of print but I managed to track down a secondhand copy for only 99p!

My friend has never been to Packwood House which was our main destination but, as they don't yet have a tearoom, we stopped off at Baddesley Clinton for lunch - a rather yummy vegetable soup with warm granary bread and, yes, I managed to avoid the temptation of a piece of cake!

There are always Mallard around the tearoom.

After lunch onto Packwood House - I know I have already done several posts on this garden this year so I have tried, where possible, to include some photos of different areas.

This flower bed in the Carolean Garden was full of lemon Tulips and Wallflowers, interspersed with a few Crown Imperials and Forget-me-Nots and looked beautiful.

These Hellebores have been flowering since my first visit a few months ago!

Violets (and Ladybird)

Sunken Garden installed by Baron Ash (who owned the property then) in the 1930's

If anyone has any idea what this gorgeous plant is I would love to know

View towards the Yew Garden from the steps leading to the Raised Terrace

Raised Terrace

The South face of the Terrace Wall contains 20 niches which were built to house bee-skeps

The first yew trees in the Yew Garden were planted in the 1650's when the lower part also contained an orchard but the "Sermon on the Mount" tradition for this garden apparently evolved towards the end of the nineteenth century following the planting of more yews. The lower part of the garden represents "The Multitude" with 12 big yews known as "The Apostles". Four even larger yews in the middle are known as "The Evangelists".

You can climb the "Mount" via a spiral path wending through box and get to the top where "The Master" or "Pinnacle of the Temple" - see photo below - has been planted.

Two metre deep bath in the North Court


These double Primulas were rather pretty

Cold Plunge bath originally built in 1680

It was a lovely day out in great company. Thanks J.


Toffeeapple said...

What a lovely day out, rain free too I am glad for you. It seems not to have stopped for weeks here and it is now becoming very tiresome.

Ragged Robin said...

Toffeeapple - I still can't believe how lucky we were with the weather. Its rained here again most of the week and it does get you down after a while. Haven't been out much this week (due to rain!) hence hanging on to this post so I would have something to blog about!

Ian said...

Most enjoyable tour of the gardens great flower photos. The plant you are trying to identify is one of the Echium species possibly candicans " Pride of Maderia"

kirstallcreatures said...

Lovely account of the churchyard wildflowers, we're hoping to go to a local Open Churchyard event this weekend tohear more about their wildlife programme.
Avoiding cake!....I don't understand.....is that wise?
Nice walk through andcommentary of the garden.
Have a great weekend, Linda

Ragged Robin said...

Ian - Many thanks. I'm glad you enjoyed the garden tour and photos and especial thanks for naming the lovely plant. I will do some research now - would love one in my garden!

Kirstallcreatures - Many thanks - so glad you liked the post. I hope you enjoy the Open Churchyard event - it sounds really interesting. I have become really fascinated with churchyards and how they can be "managed" in tune with wildlife - all thanks really to bumping into a lady when I first visited St Giles to see snowdrops!

Avoiding cake was not wise on reflection!!!I should have had both!

ShySongbird said...

Hi Caroline, What a lovely day out and you did very well to avoid too much rain. It seems to be just going on and on here. I know we needed it but it's getting boring now and I'm worried about the butterflies especially as 2011 was such a bad year for them here!

I enjoyed all the photos. Forget-Me-Nots are such pretty little flowers, yet another of my childhood favourites and they always flower well in my garden.

Baddesley Clinton was the only place I have ever managed a few ( poor) photos of a Nuthatch.

I don't have a very sweet tooth but if they'd had Coffee and Walnut cake I wouldn't have been able to resist :-)

Enjoy the rest of the weekend, Jan.

Ragged Robin said...

Hi Jan

Many thanks for your lovely comment.

Forget-me-Nots are lovely (so delicate) aren't they? - husband is always trying to eradicate them in our garden but luckily they always pop up somewhere else!

Its rained here again most of the day - as you say its not really the weather for getting out or walking and the effect of so much rain on wildlife is worrying. I have only seen 3 or 4 butterflies in the garden all year so far and not many on my travels either!

You did well to get a photo of a nuthatch at Baddesley - previously I haven't seen them much locally but I have seen 2 so far this year - one at Brueton Park, Solihull and my son spotted one just past the park a week or so back. Neither time had I got my camera with me though!

Coffee and walnut cake is rather nice!

Have a good Sunday and here's hoping this rain will stop soon :).


Rohrerbot said...

I love how you take everything step by step. I'm sorry about your cloudy weather. I've been reading lots about it lately and it doesn't seem to want to give you folks a break over there:( This garden is very interesting...from the crosses with vines to the bathes....how interesting! I think the plant you want to know more about is the Pride of Madeira.....portuguese I think? Wood is the translation. Thanks again for the great tour:)

Ragged Robin said...

Chris - Many thanks - glad you liked the tour and garden.

Its still raining here today and windy too - not a good combination!

Many thanks for naming the plant - I will be on the lookout for one for our garden.

Have a good Sunday!