Sunday, September 17, 2017

Kiftsgate Court Gardens, England I

It is hard to believe for me that over two months have passed since I posted last time and I would like to apologize to all readers who came here only to find that there is still nothing new. An important and very time-consuming work-related project and a trip to New Mexico came into the way of blogging. But the project is now successfully completed and I am back home since yesterday.

In the meantime, autumn has come and I hope with that, calmer days which will leave me more time to post regularly again. The good thing for me is though, that through an interruption like this I realized once more how much I love blogging and how much I missed it.

I was really looking forward to writing today's post for quite some time now. I am taking you to Kiftsgate Court Gardens, a wonderful garden located very close to the famous Hidcote Manor Garden (about which I blogged here) in the Cotswolds, in England, which we visited during our vacation in June this year. I simply love this garden and I hope if you aren't already, you will fall in love with it, too.

One thing that is special about this garden is that it was created by three generations of female gardeners: Heather Muir, Diany Binny and Anne Chambers, who have developed a very distinct feminine and romantic style in parts of this large garden. In the photo above you see the area of the garden which is called the Four Squares and Terrace which I will be showing in more detail further down in this blog post.

But let's start right from the beginning. This is the first impression that you get from Kiftsgate Court Gardens. Tables painted in Kiftsgates signature blue filled to the brim with lovely plants that are for sale. You can't imagine how much I regretted not being able to buy anything, but it is strictly forbidden to import plants into the US. You acquire your ticket from a person that sits where the sun umbrella is and then you walk around the left corner of the house... see this charming scene. The climbing rose is just lovely and beautifies the entry to the small cafe where you can get a simple lunch, tea or coffee and an assortment of scones and cakes and other refreshments. But that is for later.

Already when you look down at the small beds by the house in this area you know you are in for something special. They are so well thought out and planted with such a nice variety of well cared for plants.

When you continue to go around the house and look to the right you get a first glimpse of the part called Four Squares and Terrace.

But before I take you there, I want to stop at this small red border which I think is masterfully planted. I really like the combination of the red roses, the purple smoke bush and the fresh green of the other plants.

Close-up of the beautiful smoke bush.

Lovely red rose from this section of the garden.

The contrast of leave colors, textures, and shapes is quite interesting.

Does anyone know what plant this is?

Looking at the small red border from a little further away.

And from another angle.

From the red border, you can look down to the Terrace which is more formal, but very pleasing as well. Love the stone garden bench. What a treasure! The view from the Terrace into the countryside is quite spectacular, but unfortunately, I forgot to take a photo of it.

On this photo, you can see that the low walls in this part of the garden are covered with chicken wire, which gives the climbing plants something to hold onto to conquer the otherwise slippery gray stone walls.

Now we are entering the beforementioned area called The Four Squares, consisting of four rectangular beds. The abundance of plants here is quite mind-boggling. The beds are filled to the brim with roses, perennials and interesting shrubs. To me, this is the garden of my dreams!

Some of the roses there had the most unusual colors. Like the one on the photo above. They must have had heavy rains before our visit, hence some of the blooms are a little spoiled, but they are still incredibly beautiful to me.

The design is strictly geometrical in this part of the garden, which brings a sense of calm to the densely planted flower beds.

Another special rose that caught my eye.

Even though it doesn't make for the prettiest photo I love the fact that someone took the time to stake the canes of the roses individually. Labor of love!

Classic design and a beautiful sundial. The gray stone paths let this area look quite elegant.

I love this assortment of roses in mauve, tan, brown and lavender and anything in between here.

The fascinating color combinations more up close. The blue accompanies the lavender, mauve, and light lavender so well.

The dark purple eye makes this rose quite interesting. 

No matter where you look in this area the plant and color combinations are all exquisite. Here I especially like the clear blue flowering plants.

Opulent white peonies and dainty blue flowers create magic together.

One of the many lovely roses planted in this area.

Most of the peonies were slightly past their prime when we visited, but that had its own charm.

Aren't they still beautiful?

Another very charming flower combination.

And the last photo features another very charming single rose.

For today I will end this post since it has gotten already quite long, but there is much more to see in this garden so there will be more entries about Kiftsgate Court Gardens on this blog. I hope you come back for future posts. 

I just want to mention that even though I have not been able to blog regularly, I have been posting photos almost daily on my relatively new Instagram account. So if you are interested and you missed what I have been up to there, please click on the link. 

Wishing everyone a beautiful, fresh, new week. Here in San Diego, the temperatures have finally come down and I can't wait to be able to do some real gardening again and not just spend the days trying to keep up with the watering and deadheading.

See you in the garden!

Warm regards,


I am linking up to 
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  1. Lots of beautiful roses - you must have been in heaven, Christina!

  2. Hi Christina!
    I just love your posts from your vacation. This is a beautiful garden and the roses are stunning. Thank you for sharing. Do you know the name of the rose with a purple eye? Have never seen it,it´s gorgeous. We have had lovely sunny days with a little bit of rain.
    Have a nice day /Best wishes Marika

    1. I think I found the name. Rosa Eyes for You!

    2. Maribel, thank you so much for your kind words about this post! I really appreciate them!
      Actually, I don't know the name of the rose with the purple eye. I think I have seen it here in America though, so I guess it is from an American rose breeder.
      Here the temperatures have cooled down finally and I did a little bit of gardening this morning. It was so nice!

    3. Actually, I looked up Rosa Eyes for You on HelpMeFind and I think you are right that could be the rose that I photographed at Kiftsgate Court Gardens. According to HelpMeFind it is bred by Peter J. James, a British rose breeder, in 2004. I was wrong it isn't an American rose breeder. Give credit were credit belongs :-)! In any case, I think it is an incredible beautiful and unusual rose!

  3. Kiftsgate! Oh I remember this garden. Lucky me, I still have some plants from this garden. At the very moment they are in flower. I Loved the garden. It was enchanting. Groetjes Hetty

    1. Hetty, how lovely that you were able to visit Kiftsgate Court Gardens as well! I simply believe it is impossible not to love this garden!
      Awesome that you bought some plants there and they are now blooming in your own garden right! That is one of the nicest souvenirs that I can think of. Of course, I would love to see them on your blog!

  4. Truly a stunning garden. The purple smoke bush had me stopping in my tracks! Thanks for sharing this at Dishing It & Digging It It. Hope you're finding some new friends. Have a good day.

  5. My ideal garden, too! I love the colors and everything else about it, and I would love to see it in person. Not positive, but I think that plant is some type of Ti plant, or cordyline.

  6. Dear Christina,
    happy to see that you picked up blogging again! I am especially glad that your post is about Kiftsgate Garden. Today I came back from a vacation in England where I both visited cities and gardens with a travel group. We visited Hidcote Garden and I hadn´t even known about Kiftsgate Garden until our tour guide mentioned this garden while passing it on our way to Hidcote Garden. I could just take a glimpse of Kiftsgate Garden through the bus window and was disappointed to pass by this garden without visiting it. The more I am happy to now see the garden in your post. This way I at least have the chance to see pictures of it. Really looks as if I have missed out something! Regarding the plant shop, I am lucky to live in Europe. I can bring plants with me without a problem. I even bought some roses during my England vacation. It is so nice to take lovely plant reminders from such beautiful famous gardens. This way you always remember the garden when looking at the plant you bought there. I can thus see why you would have liked to take some plants with you, but I am sure you found something else to take with you. I really like the lovely garden decorations they sell at such shops.
    Looking forward to more such lovely posts!
    Best wishes,

  7. Hello, Dear Christina, so glad to see you are back! The garden is wonderful and such an inspiration. I can only imagine how lovely it must have been in person. The Four Squares garden is my dream garden with the pale pink roses and silvery foliage colors. The blue flowers, here and there, are so pretty. The burgundy foliage and red rose combination is stunning, too. So nice to see the gardens - thank you for sharing them. xx Karen

  8. Magnificent gardens and wonderful photography ~ the macro shot of the rose is my favorite ~ thanks, ^_^

    (A ShutterBug Explores)

  9. Dear Christina,
    another wonderful place filled with beauty, plants and flowers. Thank you for taking me along.
    Happy fall and all my best from Austria

  10. Enjoyed the cyber tour of this garden which has beautiful flowers and plants.

  11. Christina, this garden is absolutely gorgeous! It is my dream to tour English gardens one day. I could spend hours here just soaking it all in. Thanks so much for sharing it with SYC.

  12. Hi Christina, so nice to be back blogging again and I hope I can keep up with it. Kiftsgate Court is also one of my favorite gardens which I visited a few years ago, it is a joy to stroll around there, where I easily could have spent all day. Thank you for the series lovely photos which remind me to that time in the Cotswolds.

  13. Thank you for sharing at Create, Bake, Grow & Gather this week Christina. Have pinned to our party board.
    Hugs ~ Kerryanne

    1. Kerryanne, thank you so much for pinning my post to your party board. I really appreciate it!

  14. Your last photo made me smile ... it's 'American Pillar', one of my favorites. Thanks for bringing us along with you to visit this garden. It's beautiful.

  15. Nice! Looks so relaxing, this is the kind of work that inspires us. I'm sure it is the work of a true landscape artist.
    Regards from Hamilton NZ
    landscaping professionals

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  18. The Kiftsgate Court Gardens look incredible. Our concrete Huddersfield company worked on an old Manor house with similar-style gardens not so long ago.