The Lost gardens of Heligan

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

I have been on a little working holiday in Cornwall the past few days. I totally love Cornwall, whether it's the rugged almost beautifully surreal landscape with crashing waves against steep cliffs, to the Manderley style old manor houses with rooks circling overhead, to the cute little candy coloured fishing villages. Plus it also happens to be the home of the cream tea! The light is so good that painting down there is great, plus my mobile never works so I always manage to get a lot done. It is a great place to be inspired and this time I paid a visit to the Lost gardens of Heligan. For those of you who haven't been, Heligan was the seat of the Tremayne family for more than four hundred years. Hidden by bramble and ivy, this sleeping nineteenth century garden had been lost but has now been restored so you can see the gardens in all their glory. A highlight is the large tropical garden known as "the jungle" full of the finds of Victorian plant hunters, banana palms and giant rhubarb. Above is a photo of a section of this, and below is the gardener's shed. I love the basic, rustic look of it, with the old teapot and the brick walls but with the loving touches of a roaring fire and a vase of anemones. To read more about Heligan, visit their website on The beginning is enchanting.

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