Vergelegen Estate Gardens, South Africa

If you are anything like me, you might at this point be sitting, brow furrowed, wondering how on earth you pronounce ‘Vergelegen’. It’s almost impossible to even have a go at it. And after hearing the word many, many times, I still had to just cheat and watch a youtube clip to be reminded. It’s something like, ‘Fair-ke-lear-ken’. Obvious, really. Continue reading

Cadogan Place Gardens, London

If you were to walk around Cadogan Place Gardens on a sunny Saturday in June, I’m quite sure you’d think it a very pleasant way to pass an afternoon. Whether you were wowed by the most healthy looking roses you’d ever seen, the sumptuous herbaceous borders, the Union Jack-coloured meadow or the green, green shady woodland, amongst an enormous three hectares of immaculate planting, something’s going to ‘get’ you! Continue reading

The High Line, New York

I recently read a definition of ‘sense of place’ as somewhere that draws you back time and time again. And so despite staying on the other side of Manhattan during my recent trip to New York – and having an impossibly long list of things I wanted to see and do – my three excursions to the High Line in the space of one week perhaps qualify this urban space as being pretty place-sensical. (Please remind me not to use that expression in my dissertation.) Continue reading

A week in New York

It would be fair to say that Midtown, New York on a cold, wet day with a jet lag-induced headache wasn’t my favourite place in the world. Especially after an almost two hour journey in from the (supposedly) thirty-minutes-away airport. It was my first visit to the city and I noticed the litter collecting in rain-filled potholes, the peeling, grimy paintwork and the fact that my cab driver was swerving all over the shop with an exceedingly heavy right foot. Continue reading

The Beth Chatto Gardens

“The site was wasteland, a wilderness lying between our farm and our neighbours. It consisted of a long spring-fed hollow where the soil lay black and waterlogged, surrounded by sun-baked gravel…in one of the driest parts of the country. But it was the extreme variation in growing conditions which intrigued us, the possibility lying before us of growing…plants adapted by nature to different situations.”   Beth Chatto Continue reading