The first time I went to France was on a cycling holiday in Brittany where I saw geraniums for the first time. They hung from white-washed cottages and gleamed like rubies and I had seen nothing like them. In Liverpool we lived in terraced streets, my paper-round sometimes taking me to more affluent roads where I’d see a few bedraggled nasturtiums, the occasional marigold, and small, trimmed privet hedges.
When I bought my first house, I bought my first geraniums and thought I was living the dream. Geraniums and vol-au-vents, did life get any better?
Rather fortunately, it did.
Hampton Court gardens, colour drenched in sun and plants without names, for which I now beg for help. I want a small cottage garden – rogue damson trees permitting. We'll approach the garden slowly.
Those cheerful looking gargoyles told me there might be magic here.
And there was
Looks peaceful enough but then . . .
Man turned into tree - see the horror on that face?
Surely there's a secret door behind all that foliage and small gnomish burrows beneath
Aha! A real secret door and a small girl sensing adventure
And at last, the garden and the game of 'Name that flower'
I call these blue spikies - no idea what they are
These, though, I think are Delphiniums
But the rest are a mystery, though roses may be somewhere amongst them
And at last it's time go
Last glimpse of Hampton Court Castle, a gem in the Herefordshire countryside, and a passing thought. I still like geraniums - the gateway drug to heaven.