Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Harlow Carr in May

At long last we've visited Harlow Carr without risking hypothermia. We'd planned to go on Sunday as there was a Spring Plant Fair being held but the weather was terrible, it was pouring down with rain, much like today, so we went yesterday instead. Knowing what it's been like on previous visits, I wore my coat but I soon stripped off to a t shirt, it was so warm. We definitely chose the right day to go.

The first thing that hit me as we walked through the door was the tulip border. In March it was nothing but bare soil, by April a few yellow tulips were flowering but just two weeks later and the rest of the tulips had followed suit creating this stunning display.


As the weather was being kind on this visit, we decided to head in to the woodland.


Many of the rhododendrons are now flowering, though some are still in bud.


There's a good collection of different plants which you'll see from my next photos. I don't think they need any explanation.







This bee was covered in pollen.


We trip trapped over the small bridge even though a troll was on guard.


Work at Harlow Carr doesn't stop for a bank holiday, here some forestry work was being undertaken.


It's evident that lots more of this type of work has been carried out. Log piles line the paths in some areas.


Is it just me who can see a dinosaur in this tree? My knowledge of trees is sadly lacking, I'd love to know what this tree is if anyone knows.


We came upon the bird hide so we decided to see who was about. There wasn't any unusual birds on the feeders but we often see red kites soaring overhead whilst we're at Harlow Carr.


Daffodils are still flowering but they're really past their best now.


I'm not usually one for fancy daffodils but I though this frilly variety was lovely.


I like this narcissus Sir Winston Churchill, a multi headed variety.


The kitchen garden was looking very neat and tidy. I asked one of the girls working there what happens to the produce they grow and was told that they don't grow sufficient quantities to sell so the gardeners get to take it home.



Crops are starting to appear in the raised beds now. Here we have radish, spinach and peas.


Apple mint being grown in a sunken container. I know myself how invasive it is, my first allotment plot was covered in the stuff and we never managed to get rid of it. I'd never plant mint in open ground without some form of barrier.


The rhubarb bed has now been cleared of the forcing pots and the plants are being allowed to grow uncovered. There were bare patches of earth here and there when we last visited but the plants have put on a lot of growth since then. There's odd tulips flowering amongst the rhubarb.


There's been a lot more growth in the bed I'm following. I'm looking forward to seeing what emerges over the next couple of months here.


The tulips are really doing their thing now, so many different varieties. I'd like to leave you with some photos of the displays and varieties being grown at Harlow Carr.













This has been my favourite month to visit Harlow Carr so far but I'm looking forward to seeing which plants will be the stars of the show on my next visit.

34 comments:

  1. Yesterday's weather was rather kind here too considering it was a bank holiday.Glad that you were able to squeeze another visit in.Those tulips in the top photo make for a fabulous display Jo. Was there a label telling you which varieties were planted ?

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    1. There was a label but I didn't note down the varieties. a survey had been taken of people's favourite tulips and this bed had been made up of them. I think they give a stunning display when grouped together like this.

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  2. Wow, amazing tulips, and I really love that frilly narcissus. It looks like a wonderful time to visit. And I especially like the troll. CJ xx

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    1. I usually like simple narcissus but that frilly one really caught my eye. Harlow Carr is a great place to take children, there's usually something going on for them during holiday time or on bank holidays, there's an adventure playground and I know your eldest would love the bird hide.

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  3. Lovely post, the tulips are stunning.

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    1. I like visiting Harlow Carr at this time of year as they always put on a good tulip display.

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  4. The tulips are beauties,

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    1. They certainly are. They know how to display them to show them at their best.

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  5. Hi Jo,

    What an amazing display of tulips. I really like the white Sir Winston Churchill. I am making a note of that for next year Spring pots :)

    The woodland area is beautiful. I love this type of landscaping and am never more comfortable than strolling through it. My Grandchildren would have loved the bridge.

    The dinosaur is possibly a Kashmir Cypress. I know, for sure, this tree has drooping sprays, and is very similar to the one you show. I am no expert by the way......

    Lovely tour........glad the weather held for you :)

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    1. I like that multi headed narcissus variety, Sir Winston Churchill, too. It's a double, which isn't something I usually go for but I really liked this one. There's lots of things for children at Harlow Carr, especially during school holidays. I'm pleased that they're encouraged to visit gardens like this. Thank you for your thoughts on the tree, it could definitely be this. I shall ask if I see anyone nearby when I'm there again.

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  6. I love the orange and pink tulips together. You'd think it wouldn't work, but it does!

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    1. I agree, they look fabulous together. One of the reasons I like to visit gardens is to see how they do things, I'd never have put orange and pink together but I just might do in future.

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  7. Wow! That pretty much sums up my reaction to the tulip border. I adore the orange ones - lately I've been having this love affair with orange flowers.

    Our tulips are just coming up now - I think they will likely flower within the next week or two. Definitely not as grand a display, but they are the only bulbs I have planted since we moved here, so I'm really looking forward to it.

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    1. The tulip border's even better in real life. I wouldn't have chosen orange tulips myself but they looked fabulous, they're on my wish list for next year. Spring bulbs are a great start to any garden, something to look forward to through the winter and something to start the garden off before you really get down to planting it up.

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  8. Thanks for sharing these images, on my list to visit too. Now I've an idea what I'll see :-)

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    1. It's a beautiful garden with so many different areas of interest. There's always something to see whenever you visit. I hope you manage a trip there soon.

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  9. I am so envious, I have never manged a visit and from here it would have to be a 3 day trip. We do have some lovely garden though and I have a series of visits planned for the summer.

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    1. We're so lucky that we're never that far from a lovely garden to visit in this country. Harlow Carr is the only RHS garden I've visited, I'd love to visit one of the others but they're quite a distance from here. I shall look forward to seeing which gardens you visit this summer.

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  10. It has been interesting to see that bed of tulips over the last few months. It now looks beautiful. The tulip is one of my favourite Spring flowers for the different varieties and colours, especially the two-toned striped ones. I should think Harlow Carr kitchen garden and the other areas is a good place for horticultural training. I'm looking forward to seeing the flower bed you're following.

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    1. I'm really enjoying my monthly visits as there as big differences to see in different areas over just a few short weeks. It's fun watching the flower bed spring in to life, there hasn't been such huge differences there as yet but I can imagine it looking stunning in summer, we'll see.

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  11. Lovely place to visit - the flowers are beautiful. I love the troll!

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    1. It's a fabulous place to visit. I love the troll too, there's lots of little quirky things to find around the woodland which delight children and adults alike.

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  12. What a fabulous visit. May can be such a good month to visit many interesting places, see the beautiful plants and flowers and to enjoy a walk in glorious surroundings.

    And as Gillian just said - I love the 'troll' too !

    All the best Jan

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    1. This has been my favourite month to visit Harlow Carr so far this year, there was so much to see and it makes a real difference if the weather's good too.

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  13. Glad you enjoyed your day...you got some beautiful pictures!!

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    1. These weren't even half of the photos I took. There's so much to see and photograph there that I go a bit mad and then it's a case of wondering what to include on the blog and which ones to leave out.

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  14. A most enjoyable post and such lovely colourful pictures, especially the wonderful assortment of tulips.
    I can see the dinosaur hiding in the tree.
    The white feathery edged daffodil is a tulip! Flighty xx

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    1. Of course it is, ha ha. I'm glad that someone noticed. It's a wonderful time of year to visit Harlow Carr, they certainly know how to display the tulips to show them at their best, I've taken away many ideas from seeing them all. It was Mick who pointed out the dinosaur tree and I had to agree that it does look like one.

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  15. That was a much more enjoyable visit than the previous one, I think? It seems to have been a very good year for Tulips. My few have survived the recent terrible weather quite well, which has disproved my prejudice that Tulips are too vulnerable to wind damage! BTW, Yes, I also see a dinosaur in that tree...It looks to me like a Cypress of some sort, but I'm not much good at tree-identification either.

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    1. I've enjoyed all my visits but to varying degrees. It's much more enjoyable looking round gardens when you're not freezing half to death. There's definitely more to see now that spring is well and truly here, that's for sure. I think you're better at tree identification than I am, get past an oak, a beech and a horse chestnut and I'm about done for but it does look like it could be some kind of weeping cypress of some sort.

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  16. What fantastic displays of tulips. I nearly went to Hyde Hall on Saturday but it was too cold and wet to venture out, you had good weather by delaying your trip by a few days. And yes I can see a dinosaur:-)

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    1. I think we chose the best day of the weekend for our visit. I'm glad we visited when we did though, I would have hated to miss the wonderful tulip displays which are there at the moment.

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  17. What a heavenly array of tulips!! I love the dinosaur in the tree!xxx

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    1. There's such a fabulous assortment of tulips in the gardens, they always seem to put on a great display.

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