Howick Gardens ~ February 2020

Sophie and I have visited Howick Gardens a couple of times prior to this post, in October 2015 and July 2017, but there’s something different happening there all year round, and this time we went to see the snowdrops. If you want the history of the gardens it’s in the first link there, if not, on with the pretty pictures! Although it was quite cold, we had a clear blue sky, and the snowdrops were out in force. I had my FujiXT2 + my 16mm fujinon & my helios lens, with me and my Canon EOS 100 FN with a…

Wynyard Gardens – October 2019 – part 2

Part 1 HERE On the way back through the woods, we came across a few interesting bits and bobs. lots of mushrooms everywhere We got back to the formal gardens, no roses as it was late in the year, but a few bits of autumn colour. For more pictures there’s a full album HERE Sophie and I hoped to return here in spring and see the rose garden, but as the corona virus is taking hold in the country now as I write, I’m not sure if that will happen. Stay tooned though, still some more adventures to do!

Raby Castle Revisited Again! – August 2019

The thing with some places, like Raby Castle, Alnwick Castle, and a few other sites not part of English Heritage or National Trust but run privately, is that you buy a ticket to get in to the place, which isn’t always cheap, but allows you to visit as many times as you like within a year of buying it. Raby Castle is well worth a few visits and though we’d been back in May, we wanted a return trip to do the butterflies in the beautiful gardens there, always a spectacle. This year was the year of the painted ladies…

Cragside – Rhododendrons June 2019

It’s cold here in the UK, the summer flowers have gone and the autumn leaves blown away, so let’s take a walk through the estate at Cragside and remember warmer times. “Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” Rachel Carson   “Plant seeds of happiness, hope, success, and love; it will all come back to you in abundance. This is the law of nature”. Steve Maraboli “If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.” Laura Ingalls Wilder “Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.”…

Raby Castle Revisited – May 2019

Back in August 2018 Sophie and I went off to visit Raby Castle and had a great time chasing deer around the place. When you buy a ticket to get in there, it lasts for a whole year, so we revisited in May when the spring flowers were popping up.  The castle itself is a grand castle, so much to see, so much history, and a deer park in the extensive grounds and I did a 7 part series on it last year.  The history of the castle, and the Neville and Vane families who held it, is quite fascinating,…

Wallington Walled Garden ~ February 2019

Regular readers might remember my posts of the wonderful interior at Wallington Hall back in October 2018, if not, check it out HERE if you like. In February Sophie and I revisited the walled gardens as we had heard about the field of crocuses/crocusi/croci (whatever plural you prefer) on display. On our way to the garden, we took in the view across the fields from Wallington Hall. There was a ‘plant some snowdrops’ thing going on where the public could help the gardeners populate areas with snowdrops, but there were quite a few parents and kids doing it, and we…

Wallington ~October 2018 ~ part 2

part 1 HERE After wandering around the walled garden (see part 1) we then went into the large conservatory and took some photos of the flowers and bits and bobs.   there were a few different types of Fuschia     the glass house is definitely full of flowery goodness   A nice detail set into the wall We left the glass-house and had a wander up to the bird feeding station     It was nearing lunchtime for us too, so we walked back up to the house, past the lake and boat shed   A heron took flight out…

Stockton on Tees~ Butterfly House ~ Part 2

I thought I’d just do one more post from the Butterfly House before we move back into History and visit Raby Castle. Part 1 HERE I don’t know what make this little bird is, but he was flying about inside the butterfly house.   As well as butterflies, there’s a separate section for Meerkats and reptiles.       There are some lovely ponds and details   but I love the flowers and butterflies the best                 I think that gives you an idea of how lovely it is to spend time in…

Stockton on Tees ~ July 2018~ The Butterfly House

A little break from history and people. Stockton -on- Tees, not a name to conjure up images of steamy jungles or cocktails on the river boat. But Sophie and I know Stockton has an amazing huge glass building full of exotic blooms, plants and butterflies we just don’t see over here in the outside world. The chap who started it collected them from all over the world, and now they just perpetuate in Stockton, their ancestry is diverse, but these are many generations on so have British passports. 😀 😀 No funny captions, just some pretties to look at, so…