Celia Hart's blog about what's going on in and around her studio.
Art, printmaking, inspirations, gardening, vegetables, hens, landscapes, wild flowers, East Anglia, adventure, travel.

Thursday, 3 June 2010

A tonic for the senses

While recovering from whatever laid me low over the holiday weekend, I had time to just look at the garden and think . . .

What is a garden for?

A place to sit outside

For enjoying morning sunshine, midday shade
and evening sun.


The intense saturated colour of an Oriental Poppy,
one of many I grew from a packet of seeds,
each a different shade of red.

Form and pattern

Curves like an Art Nouveau arabesque,
the iris flowers beside the pond, with exquisitely
complex patterned petals.

Anticipation and scent

I found this plant through it's scent – drifting over
a hedge to a footpath I was walking.
I found out its name, Elaeagnus 'Quicksilver',
bought one for our garden and waited.
And waited. Waited for four years.
Until this year! There are buds, now tiny flowers
and the most heavenly scent – I wish I could blog the scent!
Vanilla? Apple pie? Ice cream sundaes?
All of those wrapped up in floweriness :-)

All photos taken this morning in my garden.


  1. I love irises, the bearded variety and the others we have in the garden, even the sadly named STINKING IRIS! And poppies.... we have masses of wild ones down the side of the house mixed in with valerian, along the front hedge, in surprising places around the back, adding bright dots of colour to otherwise boring areas sometimes. And we have the orientalis, a beautiful very frilly one in deepest red which arrived from who knows where, and a fab purple. The garden just gives so much pleasure doesn't it?

  2. There are so many reasons to have a garden. All those, and room to have chickens, space to grow better food than you can every buy, a place to eat out.
    And of course, somewhere to house the collection of plants that you amass, cadge or otherwise acuire!

    When you run out of space for all that, you join the Britian in Bloom movement - and your village becomes your garden.

  3. I love it when I'm walking around in my backyard and all of a sudden a scent stops me in my tracks. The lawn guys have failed to come for yet another week, and so my lawn is now a clover meadow. Unlike a flower that you can pinpoint, this aroma surrounds you on all sides. Quite lovely. But I do wish they'd come and mow.

  4. I was wondering if I'd missed tha chance to visit your open studio but it was Norfolk while I was there and you are in a different area. I am very envious of your location...everything grows like mad down there. I struggle but am having a bit of success this year. ie the slug seem to be on the wane for two reasons..pellets..and hotter dryer weather.I actually have two foot tall delphiniums!!!!Thats not twofoottall thats 2 one foot tall each!

  5. My oh my, what a beautiful collection of words and flowers.

    I love that last quicksilver plant. I'm not sure if I have ever before seen one of those! Think that I would remember such an enticing scent.


  6. I've just come in from a wander round my garden and now I've been to yours! I love the oriental poppies, I just hope this year they are not flattened by wind and rai just as they hit their peak.
    Glad you are feeling better now, P x

  7. Your oriental poppy is superb. My red one is just opening but the star here is a dusty pink one with a deep purple blotched centre. Loads of huge fat buds, no flowers just yet.
    I love the sound of the eleagnus too. Might have to look out for it!

  8. I hope you are fully better now Celia and that the magic of the garden has worked all its magic. Lovely images.

  9. "The first purpose of a garden is to be a place of quiet beauty such as will give delight to the eye and repose and refreshment to the mind."
    Gertrude Jekyll, A Gardener's Testament.


  10. a beautiful post! wonderful way to start my monday morning!


I love reading all the comments (except for spam and advertising which I will delete) and I'll reply here in the comments under each blog post, it may take a few days if I'm busy.
You don't need to have a blog to leave a comment, you can select the name/URL option and fill in just your name instead of a blog link.