We walked around the gardens of Blickling Hall in Norfolk a couple of weeks ago on a late spring day that was warm though not very sunny.  I love the lamp-like blossoms of the horse chestnuts in the second-last picture.  The close-up blossom is a grapefruit tree in the orangery.


I took these pictures two weeks ago in my parents’ garden.  Summer is such a wonderful surprise – you wait for months and then everything flowers all at once.  After so much grey, followed by a little tentative green and white, we’re surrounded by colours upon colours.  It was worth the wait, yet again.

I walk or cycle past this little nature garden every day on my way to and from work.  I think it must have been a little park once, as it’s a neat rectangle surrounded by old terraced houses, but now it’s fenced off and reserved for plants and birds.  It’s on Kings Road, a busy street that nearly always roars with traffic, in an area where not many properties have gardens, so I think it must be an important haven for some of the city’s wildlife.  I like the polite tone of the sign, plus its jaunty angle.

Two weeks ago, we visited Hinton Ampner, a house belonging to the National Trust. The gardens were starting to show signs of spring, like these buds.