Sunday, 9 July 2017

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The Islamic Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

Here is a garden that seems so little known, that on a sunny afternoon there was hardly anyone there, while the surrounding Burgess Park was bustling with people. I didn't remember how Chumleigh had found its way on my list of London gardens to visit; this feels as obscure now as the garden itself.

I came here after visiting the Lavender Garden in Vauxhall Park, via Myatt's Fields Park, and a good stroll through Burgess Park; I felt hot and exhausted. The only thing I remembered from reading about Chumleigh was a picture of a water feature with pretty tiles and a palm tree - shown in the above photo - a promise of a calm coolness. Before I found this, I melted away in the hot summer colours of the English Garden.

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The English Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The English Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The English Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

I hadn't expected such a well laid out and planted flower garden here. The English Garden looked like it could have been part of some country estate. The pretty buildings surrounding it probably contributed to this though.

They are 19th century almshouses, built by the Friendly Female Society. They now host a cafe and nursery. The multi-cultural garden around them was created 1995 and is designed to reflect the area's diversity. As well as the English Garden, there are an Oriental, an African and Caribbean, an Islamic, and a Mediterranean Garden, which are sat behind the almshouse buildings and are even more secluded and tranquil.

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The Mediterranean Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

Chumleigh Gardens, Burgess Park
The Mediterranean Garden at Chumleigh - 8 July 2017

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Vauxhall Lavender

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden
The Lavender Garden in Vauxhall Park - 8 July 2017

On a hot July day, the Lavender Garden in Vauxhall Park feels like a place far out of London. It is surprisingly quiet. The air smells of lavender, there are bees buzzing around the plants. The grass below is burnt by the sun. This is summer; you think that you are somewhere in the South.

Yet this is South London, only a few minutes walk from Vauxhall Station. Just over a hundred years ago actually, there were lavender fields not far away from here. Today, there is Carshalton Lavender, a community project that opens the opens the field to the public at their annual harvest weekend end of July, and the Mayfield Lavender fields in Banstead. And there is lovely little garden here in Vauxhall Park.

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden

Vauxhall Park Lavender Garden

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Return to Cannizaro Park

Cannizaro Park
Spring sunshine in Cannizaro Park - 9 April 2017

Wimbledon's Cannizaro Park has been one of my favourite places in London since I first found it in 2010. I used to visit regularly, in particular to see the crocuses, which carpet the park in February.

I went back for the first time in four years today; Cannizaro Park still is as lovely as I'd remembered it. What I love about this place is that despite it being a fairly big park, it's so secluded, with its several little gardens hidden away within it. I've always thought that the park has an enchanted feel to it, and it was casting its spell it in the spring sunshine today.

Cannizaro Park
Cherry blossoms at the Rose Garden - 9 April 2017

Cannizaro Park
Snakeshead fritillaries - 9 April 2017

Cannizaro Park
Cannizaro House and the Sunken Garden - 9 April 2017

Cannizaro Park
Spring flowers in the Sunken Garden - 9 April 2017

Saturday, 8 April 2017

The Bluebell Wood in Wanstead Park

Bluebells in Wanstead Park
Bluebells in Wanstead Park - 8 April 2017

When I wrote about where to see bluebells in London back in 2011, I didn't know yet about Wanstead Park. Some time after I must have learnt there are bluebells there; I first went to see them in 2014.

The Wanstead Park bluebells are the best in London: A proper bluebell wood! They're out now, and can be found in Chalet Wood, just to the north west of the Temple in Wanstead Park.

Bluebells in Wanstead Park
Wanstead Park bluebells in April 2016

Bluebells in Wanstead Park
Wanstead Park bluebells in April 2016

Bluebells in Wanstead Park
Wanstead Park bluebells in April 2014

Bluebells in Wanstead Park
Wanstead Park bluebells in April 2014

Links:
City of London: Wanstead Park
City of London: The Temple in Wanstead Park

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Spring Blooms at Myddelton House Gardens

Myddelton House Gardens
The Alpine Meadow and Rock Garden - 24 February 2017

Myddelton House Gardens in Enfield is one of those places that spring visits early. Myddelton House was the home of the 'Crocus King' E. A. Bowles, and so it is no surprise that there are many crocuses, snowdrops, and some early daffodils flowering here now.

Most of these can be found on the Alpine Meadow and in the Rock Garden, but they are really sprinkled all around the gardens.

Snowdrops and Crocuses at Myddelton House Gardens

Crocuses at Myddelton House Gardens

Daffodils at Myddelton House Gardens

Spring 2017 marked my second visit to this lovely garden. I first visited three years ago, when I didn't have a good time, and then stopped exploring parks and gardens and taking photos, something I had previously enjoyed a lot. All is good now.

There is a lot more to see at Myddelton House Gardens: A Victorian conservatory and glasshouses, a pond and ornamental gardens, and a over 100 years old wisteria. I think I'll be back later in the year.

Myddelton House Gardens
The Rock Garden - 24 February 2017

Snowdrops at Myddelton House Gardens
Snowdrops- 24 February 2017

Links to websites with more information:
Visit Lee Valley website
E. A. Bowles of Myddelton House Society
London Parks and Gardens Trust