early morning at Dixter

May 25, 2013

malus 1

The nursery at Great Dixter opens well before the garden. This is a very good arrangement for us locals as we can shop and then start the journey around the garden (as a Friend, of course) before the world arrives.  There was a fresh energy in the air this morning.  Folks who know the set up will understand the chronology of the pics that follow. The group of malus by the lane  full of frothy white blossom partners the line of ash opposite looking OK??? fingers crossed . . .

fraxinus

4woven fence

. .  delicate touch on the woven fence – just enough for the country setting. Stacks/heaps/piles of hazel and… and … other timber.

6 wood heaps

7 walnut

Into the Front Meadow carpeted now with camassia.

8 camassias + yew hedge

And a couple of residents enjoying the sun at last by the front door. People who know me well also know that I am a little taken with these. They remind me of the 4 that I’ve had over many years. This is 2 year old Conifer in the foreground . . .

9 sweeties

. . . and Miscanthus who is about 6 months old. She’s very sweet.

10 new sweetie

11 birds

Strolling around to the Peacock Garden and the Carnival of Birds – my rename of Daisy Lloyd’s Parliament of Birds  . . .  I see the first of many Ferula with main stalk thrusting skywards.

12 ferula

A few views from the Cat Garden, High Garden and the Orchard Garden in no particular order.

13 view

14 view

15 view

By know I’ve decided that Fergus has become obsessed with ferulas – similar to his great liking of verbascums a couple of years ago. But then he’s master of the visual and the horticultural. Down to the Orchard where orchids are just flirting with the buttercups . . .

16 meadow

. . and on down the Long Border where a snapshot of the strong colour combinations  that Christo enjoyed was framed.

17 house

18 exotic

Muso basjoo, in the Exotic garden, still in their winter clothes but signs of delights flowering well on the walls around the Sunken Garden and a glimpse of a ghost.

19 climber

last

And for those students of Hadlow and University of Greenwich, I caught up with Kemal who was looking suitably nervous about his plant idents for the Great Dixter study days – some sympathy or a wry smile maybe, but fond memories.

Within my Garden, rides a Bird
Upon a single Wheel --
Whose spokes a dizzy Music make
As 'twere a travelling Mill --

He never stops, but slackens
Above the Ripest Rose --
Partakes without alighting
And praises as he goes,

Till every spice is tasted --
And then his Fairy Gig
Reels in remoter atmospheres --
And I rejoin my Dog,

And He and I, perplex us
If positive, 'twere we --
Or bore the Garden in the Brain
This Curiosity --

But He, the best Logician,
Refers my clumsy eye --
To just vibrating Blossoms!
An Exquisite Reply!  Emily Dickinson

10 Responses to “early morning at Dixter”


  1. So many beautiful things become easier & easier to gather from everywhere & gaze on & enjoy – but sometimes my heart just aches to be somewhere & belong there, as I once–very briefly–belonged to a place that filled me elation every morning I awoke in the place; where I made my rounds and nodded to every beauty and thanked the world for it.
    Somehow this place–or the perspectives of it you’ve shown us– reminds me how that felt.
    And thanks for plucking an unfamiliar, and incredibly lovely, Emily Dickinson poem out of the great cluster that exists—
    That home of less than two years of my childhood is where I learned, “I’ll tell you how the sun rose . . “—-back when mornings were so promising.
    (And I love when she talks about her dog.)
    Thank you

  2. Sinclair 3168 Says:

    Sweet dachsies! Nice deserving comment above too

  3. julia fogg Says:

    Real sweeties.

  4. Elizabeth Says:

    Well, this is just about heaven on earth, isn’t it? The slightly unkempt/kempt ‘artless’ art combining the hands of nature and man…
    Nothing at all like that here where it is horribly cold though some first roses are out.
    I am rather late to admiring the admirable qualities of sausage dogs having met some ghastly ones in my youth.
    Now rather like them.
    An unfamiliar Emily – she is always slightly unsettling to me!

  5. julia fogg Says:

    Just a glimmer of sun but we won’t hold our breath – missing France badly – heigh ho.

  6. Tom Says:

    What a place! And what a house (roof!).. Perhaps it was the lack of people, or is its beauty immune even to that?
    Very Petal-like, that little sausage. They have towering dignity, that belies the length of their legs.
    France very pretty now, rampant wild up on Bibemus x

  7. Lois Tonkin Says:

    Thank you Julia. I have longed to visit Great Dixter for so long (I live in New Zealand) and promise myself I will one day. In the meantime your photographs (and little descriptions) ‘take’ me there in a way that formal photographs from a magazine or book haven’t before. I see it through the eye of someone who knows the garden through repeated visits, and loves it.

  8. julia fogg Says:

    Hope you get there one day Lois!


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