Wednesday, July 5, 2017


Sissinghurst Castle and gardens was our first stop on our garden tour (we were on our own, not with a tour group).  Sissinghurst Castle was the beloved home of Vita Sackville-West and her husband, Harold Nicolson.  The castle has a long and interesting history but was acquired by Vita and Harold in the 1930s.  At the time of purchase it was a crumbling, derelict mess, but they began right away restoring the buildings and creating the astonishingly beautiful gardens that you see today. Sissinghurst is now part of the National Trust and is, happily, open to the public.  Quite simply, this place is magic.

Vita was an author and a plantswoman while Harold, who was a politician, worked on the planning of the garden rooms.  Together they created a garden that is breathtakingly beautiful and world renowned.  Interestingly, Vita was denied her beloved home, Knole, due to the entail that meant only the male line could take ownership!  Some see a resemblance to the facade of Sissinghurst to Knole, but rather less grand.

The tower, behind the gate house, is where Vita's writing room was.  The view from the top of the tower is magnificent and gives a wonderful overview of how the garden was laid out.  

I loved the use of mown paths and actually think this is something we could put to use at Frog's Hollow.

Really, no detail or crevice was left out.  I loved how even the steps have flowers!

Vita and Harold often grew climbing roses in the apple trees so that they would have two different bloom times!  I love this idea and would love to try it!

This little building, next to the surviving moat, was Nigel's (Vita and Harold's son) office.  When Gretchen and I first saw it, we were smitten with it, but you can imagine our delight when we saw the other side and realized it has beautiful leaded glass windows overlooking the moat and countryside in the distance!

Vita and Harold designed the garden with color themed rooms and the white garden is perhaps the most famous of them all.  I loved how each room was a surprise, either behind a brick wall, through an arched hedge or down a line of lime trees.  Everything flowed beautifully.

P.S.  I have zero idea what is going on with the layout of the blog and why this photobucket stuff has now shown up!  But it has spurred me on to make some blog changes.  If anyone has a recommendation for someone to help build a site, I would welcome it!

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