Thursday, 6 October 2016

More of Sissinghurst

As I said in the previous post, it was the details I saw that so inspired me, more than the overall grandeur of the place.

Before we begin, as an aside: Ian Hislop and wife Victoria live in Sissinghurst village. I can recommend her book The Island, which I enjoyed reading after we had visited the place about which it is written (a leper colony off of Malta). I hadn't realised until now she was married to him. (I originally had links to these people and the book, but decided I didn't want to spend my life fighting with Blogger's formatting).

What with bees being in danger of extinction (and we will surely follow soon after), wild flower meadows are a popular thing here. They look dead simple to create, but according to one of the gardeners, they require quite a bit of work, as least to begin with. 

I just thought this was a perfect stack of arched doorway and wonderful windows.

What's so great about some plain old flower vases, an old brick wall and some gardener's notes on a big piece of slate? I don't know, I just liked it.

Archways often get to me.

I cheated and took a couple of photos inside the tower, mostly out the window. I couldn't believe how laser sharp those hedges were cut.

And these flowers were just too exuberant not to snap.

Can you imagine what it would be like to have an archway dividing your house? It's lovely to look at, but what if you were downstairs and wanted to be across the way? It would be good exercise, mind.

There were several examples of some sort of square or rectangular vessel propped up on legs of some kind that struck me as copy-able at home somehow.

I always hate to see the back of people's furniture (dressing tables are the worst culprit) in their windows, but somehow I don't mind books so much. And there is nothing so romantic as leaded pane windows...

well, unless it's leaded pane windows and with climbing roses. Can you see the very simple door handle on that weathered wood door?

Doorways and wrought iron are both terribly picturesque in my book.

A beckoning gate...with another of those primitive handles.

Like I said I'm no gardener and I've no idea what these plants are, other than they are some of my favourite colours.

These dark purple poppies(?) would look great in my tiny garden...

I think this sort of room formed by hedges is a relatively common feature at a number of National Trust properties.

And not just rooms, but corridors - always with a focal point at each end.

These trees weren't only espaliered, but the limbs had been grafted together so that they formed a continuous line of branches. This was really effective, but for some reason I also found it a tad creepy, as though the trees had been robbed of their independence. Silly of me, I know.

The small pots don't look nearly as haphazard as they do in my yard, probably because I don't have a five foot statue or those two enormous pots to give them a proper setting.

Sorry this is a bit crooked...I just loved the ornate bench.

This 'window in the wall' might be my favourite of these photos. As I mentioned, Bill and I thought the extensive walls might have once formed rooms in the former castle, though a window this size wouldn't have been in a castle that served as a fortress. It often struck me that much of the charm of the Sissinghurst garden is not in the plants themselves, but in the amazing architectural structures that provide the backdrop.

I think Sissinghurst may be most famous for Vita and Harold's white garden. It is quite striking. I don't think they would have had the discipline (nor would I) to stick to all white, had they not had so many other 'rooms' in which to splash around some colours.

The rose pergola got to me, like they always do. If you Google images of pergola you get some clumsy looking wooden structures, but this one is light and airy.

We visited a rose garden somewhere a few years ago and neither of us can remember where. One day I will spend some time looking through photos - I took a LOT - to find the enormous pergola covered with roses. Roses are pretty easy to grow here in England, even I can do it, amazingly.  The trick seems to be to keep deadheading them. 

More white flowers, set off with grey foliage.

I loved the mix of large stones, small stones and the occasional arrangement of a few bricks. It looks almost as though it could have occurred naturally.

Another inviting doorway.

An abundance of pink!

From the other side...

There is some decorating 'rule' that anything looks good in multiples. I was thinking these two watering cans looked cozy together, tucked up against this wall and surrounded by plants. 

I think for much of this visit to Sissinghurst I felt as though I'd fallen down a rabbit hole. 


Bev said...

Holy cow, this is absolutely stunning! Thank you for sharing this place with us. I think we are very sympatico with our tastes in Windows, Arches, Gardens, Doorways, Pathways. (yes, I just capitalized all of that).
The rose pergola is charming.
I've never seen purple poppies before.
The juxtaposition of simple and ornate is wonderful, and satisfying.
I can certainly understand why you loved this place.
By the way, you take gorgeous photos.

Shelley said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it. I'm sure there must be an enormous amount of material on the internet about Sissinghurst, but you have to have heard of it to know to look. I'm really glad you like my photos. My parents were professional photographers and mostly did portraits, but now and then they liked to enter competitions (Mom usually won). I didn't get much of her vast artistic talents, nor my dad's understanding of stuff like F-stops and shutter speeds. I just point and press the button any time I see something that turns me to mush.