Well, June is flaming, isn't it? Blimey Charlie it's been hot, and despite the sun lotion I'm looking like a Neopolitan ice cream - white, pink and brown. I've been slapping on the after-sun in an attempt to avoid painful sunburn, and thankfully so far it's working.
I've been pottering about in the garden lately, but haven't blogged. Not real reason why, just that when I get the chance to be a lazy baggage I generally take it. I think on the evolutionary scale I'm nudging up next to the sloths.
Anyway, Saturday saw another outing to a public garden. This time it was at Pocklington, in the East Riding of Yorkshire. Amidst glorious countryside is Burnby Hall Gardens & Museum. (The museum I won't bore you with. It's fine if you're okay looking at stuffed animal heads from when one Major Percy Stewart, an 'adventurer and traveller', toured the world shooting its wildlife. I'm not.)
The Gardens are home to a National Collection of over 100 varieties of water lily, plus there're a number of sculptures to see, lakes teeming with coy carp and a Stumpery. Let's get the practicalities out of the way first: it's pushchair and wheelchair friendly, there's a good cafe and clean, well maintained loos. It's £5.00 for standard adult entry, but cheaper for seniors, children and there's a family rate. It's no to dogs, except obviously assistance dogs. If you're taking little 'uns you need to keep an eye on them as the lakes are deep and the fish mean it's tempting for children to get right to the water's edge. Speaking of fish ...
You can buy cups of fish food for a quid from the cafe, and it's worth it as feeding them is massively entertaining. The fish - carp and roach apparently - are ever eager for food, and smart enough to know that people approaching the water's edge may have some. They cluster around, jostling for a morsel, mouths gaping over.
The fish glide among the reeds, flag iris and lily pads.
The different varieties of lilies are well labeled, but you can't get among them to have a close enough look. It'd be good if there were some mini-piers. Modestly sized viewing platforms you could walk along to almost get encircled by them. But that's a minor gripe. (Perhaps I should just invest in a pair of binoculars next time Lidl/Aldi have them in one of their Aisles of Wonder.)
There are various sculptures dotted around the Gardens. Including this big cat, with apologies to the artist whose name I didn't note down.
Here's a gathering of giraffes at the water's edge. Again, sorry I didn't note the artist.
The Stumpery was cool and shady on a blisteringly hot day. There were plenty of wood carvings here, mainly variations on the folklore figure of the Green Man. I think Stumpery's were a bit of a Victorian thing, and they're probably really good for insects, bees and birds. All that rotting wood and nooks and crannies for little creatures to nest or hide in.
I bet a Stumpery on a gloomy, overcast day would be enough to make a decorous Victorian lady feel decidedly agitated. As dusk fell it could get rather spooky, don't you think?
Back out in the open again.
Down by the water's a good spot to eat your picnic lunch.
Yup, all in all I'd recommend Burnby Hall Gardens for a visit. The Rock Garden's being re-planted, so it's going to look rather barren until the autumn, but there's still plenty to occupy you. Plus plants for sale and the usual knick knacks, sweets and fudge in the gift shop. More info's at www.burnbyhallgardens. com
Hope you're not too hot & frazzled by the weather, and happy gardening!
Moved from a garden-less city flat in the South West to a Yorkshire village in 2016. I now have a garden ... of sorts.