Mount Congreve – A Walk with the Camera

There comes a time to put things behind one, to forget about it and move on. Yesterday, it was ten weeks since I had a hip-replacement operation and, naturally enough I suppose, it has dominated my thoughts in the intervening time. After six weeks the surgeon told me all was well and that I could move along at my own pace. I was so encouraged and given such confidence that I dropped the use of crutches immediately but still proceeded cautiously. The return to working in the garden was gently – to sit on a lawnmower and cut grass is not especially demanding on the body – and I took on light jobs bit by bit.

Yesterday, marked a big step forward, literally, for it was the first day I had put on my walking boots in ages and we headed out to Mount Congreve Gardens, only a few minutes from our house, and I walked for almost two and a half hours, a gentle walk as one does in a garden with lots of stops for photographs and to chat with the gardeners as we met them and it went without a hitch, not tired; not sore and I was delighted with myself.

Here is a selection of photographs from the walk:

DSC_0006 MAY BORDER (3)
The May Border which runs along the wall between the Walled Garden and the Pleasure Garden featuring Kniphofia caulescens in full bloom at present.
DSC_0006 MAY BORDER - PAEONIA HIGH NOON(2)
One of the first paeonias to flower in the garden – Paeonia ‘High Noon’.  The double Paeonia Borders will bloom in early June.
DSC_0014
The exit from the Pleasure Garden via the Bell Gate is very impressive in April
DSC_0035 R OPORTO, LODERI GAMECHICK, MAG SOUL BROZZONII (1)
The extraordinarily dark red of Rhododendron ‘Oporto’ with the flamboyant Rhododendron loderi ‘Game Chick’ and a view to an impressive group of Magnolia soulangeana ‘Brozzonii which has perfectly clear white flowers.
DSC_0033 R OPORTO
Rhododendron ‘Oporto’ – bred by Captain Collingwood Ingram – “Cherry Ingram”
DSC_0030 R LODERI GAME CHICK -opposite Mag soul 'Brozzonii'(1)
Rhododendron loderi ‘Game Chick’ – one of many outstanding cultivars from Sir Leonard Loder
DSC_0044 TERRACE WALK - RHODO LODERI VENUS (4)
At the beginning of The Terrace Walk, Rhododendron loderi ‘Venus’
DSC_0044 TERRACE WALK - RHODO LODERI VENUS (2)
Rhododendron loderi ‘Venus’
DSC_0063 DUTCH STEPS MAG GOLDEN SUN RHODO HODGSONII
A beautiful combination at the foot of The Dutch Steps: Magnolia ‘Golden Sun’ and Rhododendron hodgsonii
DSC_0067 DUTCH STEPS MAG GOLDEN SUN
Magnolia ‘Golden Sun’
DSC_0068 DUTCH STEPS RHODO HODGSONII (1)
Rhododendron hodgsonii – though we may value its blooms it is treasured for its wood in its native land where it is used to make cooking utensils etc.
DSC_0091 PAGODA (2)
One of Mr. Congreve’s “surprises” in the woodland garden and it always demands one stop and look over the railing…
DSC_0091 PAGODA (1)
to The Pagoda
DSC_0105 MAGNOLIA WALK (1)
One of the most spectacular views in the garden, The Herman Dool Walk (formerly the Magnolia Walk) – over 100 plants of Magnolia soulangea backed by taller magnolias – M. campbellii, sprengeri etc. It has recently been renamed to remember the inestimable contribution the late Herman Dool made to the creation of the gardens at Mount Congreve – 29 years working with Mr. Congreve to create what the Massachusetts Horticultural Society recognised with its Gold Medal award as one of the great gardens of the world. In his native Holland, Mr. Dool was honoured with the Order of Orange-Nassau in recognition of his work at Mount Congreve.
DSC_0111 LOWE WALK ACER PAL OTOME ZAKURA (1)
One of those favourite plants which always demands a stop at this time of year: Acer palmatum ‘Otome Zakura’ which has the most attractive coral foliage in the early part of the year.
DSC_0111 LOWER WALK TREE PAEONIA (2)
An unknown tree paeonia on The Lower Walk which is without a name but beautiful nonetheless
DSC_0123 ROCKERY
The Rockery has been renewed and redeveloped wonderfully over the past year and extended considerably down the slope behind with an interesting planting of woodland species.
DSC_0139 THE DELL
The Dell, one of the quiet, understated and – to me – one of the most appealing spots in the garden
DSC_0141 THE TEMPLE
The Temple, the final resting place of Mr. Ambrose Congreve and his wife, Mrs. Margery Congreve which bears the inscription, “Sun and Shade by turn but Love Always”. There is a beautiful view onto the River Suir from this spot.
DSC_0156 PAULOWNIAS AND BLUEBELLS (4)
A spot of Bluebells – and the garden is awash with them at the moment.
DSC_0163 DAVIDIA INVOLUCRATA (3)
The Handkerchief Tree, Davidia involucrata, impossible to pass!
DSC_0006 MAY BORDER (6)
A final view of The May Border and home!

 

 

 

 

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22 thoughts on “Mount Congreve – A Walk with the Camera

    1. It’s a local garden and I have the great privilege of being allowed visit whenever I wish, open days or closed days so it is a very special place to me.

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  1. So glad to hear you are that far Paddy, In the greater scheme of things it was a relatively short period but probably didnt feel like that. The pictures were all fabulous, The only quibble Id have was the amount of gravel on the Rockery but maybe when I see it I will understand. We are so lucky to have a world class garden so near us and I also have Altamount not too far away. I see Michael was down at Annesgrove? I saw it many years ago and was slightly disappointed! I had expected more….what exactltly …I dont know! Im sure Mary is delighted you are mobile.All going well here at present.

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    1. Many thanks, Peter. It’s great to feel there has been progress. The gravel on the rockery will be covered very quickly as the plants grow. Annesgrove have been renovated and will be a great garden again

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  2. Just read your Mount Congreve email. For info your reference to Collingworth Ingram should read Collingwood Ingram!

    Enjoyed my virtual garden tour.

    Kind regards

    John (Sanders) Somerset Sent from my iPhone

    Sent from my iPhone >

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m very fortunate to have this garden so close to me and very thankful to those who work there that I’m welcomed in whenever I wish to go.

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  3. What a beautiful landscape to enjoy, with so many special things! The differences in blooming time for different climates always amaze me. Here in the northeast US the magnolias are at their peak, the azalea on their way, yet I wouldn’t think to see a flower on Kniphofia c. for another month or so. It’s actually only just begun to come out of dormancy!
    I’m glad to hear that leisurely garden visits are back on the table.

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    1. Your climate is harsher than ours – colder winters and hotter summers. Our climate is more like the Pacific northwest. Re the kniphofias, this species is always early here and, peculiarly, another form of the species flowers in autumn.

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