Having some relatives to stay was the just the excuse we had been looking for to go back to Hidcote. Still my favourite, and possibly the nation’s favourite National Trust garden. Relaxed and informal with good plant sales, lovely cafe, plenty of parking and 10 acres of varied, interesting and well maintained gardens.
The red border was closed for grass maintenance and watering during our visit which was a shame but just catching a glimpse of those Dahlia ‘Arabian Night’, and red salvias backed by the dark Physocarpus, Sambucus nigra and Cotinus was enough.
The burgeoning borders now spilling over the paths were a real treat to the senses and this Geranium psilostemon (or is it Anne Folkard – I can never tell the difference!) in particular was impressive.
This yellow and blue ‘room’ with acid green Euphorbias and frothy Alchemilla mollis, Thalictrum flavum glaucum and what appear to be Helianthus yet to come are balanced perfectly by blue salvias, nepeta and veronicas.
It was a perfect day to visit Hidcote. The warm sunshine made everything glow and sparkle, the army of gardeners and volunteers conspicuously absent and yet obviously working away in the background, and some of the finest gardens in England. Well worth the annual fee to belong to the National Trust just to be able to visit three or four times a year. Inspirational, motivational and educational. A treat for any gardener.