Pots at Montemenardo

Clearly my pots obsession is high at the moment. I’d planned this post even before I knew I was heading to the garden centre to look at the new pots I have in my garden. Maybe, that helped me find the pots I was after, or maybe it’s just coincidence.

Either way, the pots in this post - and their contents - struck a chord with me and are all from our Italian break last October. We stayed in an ‘agriturismo’ just outside Todi in Perugia. It was quiet, it was the end of the season, and we had the place to ourselves, apart from the owners. The weather was mixed, but generally sunny and warm enough to make use of the terraces, moving to make the most of the sun throughout the day.

terracotta pot, pretty pink flowering geraniums

It wasn’t our most active of holidays, but it was just what we needed. Spending time looking at the views of the Italian countryside, tasting some local wines like you do, and marvelling at the geraniums still in flower and the mass of aloe veras.

Potted aloe vera in dappled shade

But the pot that really captures the spirit of Montemendardo for me, was this tiny yellow pot of flowering succulents, which was just casually placed by the entrance. Some might never have noticed it, but once you did, it didn’t take long to realise its beauty.

flowering succulents in a cheery yellow pot

So pots don’t need to be large and showy to bring joy, but where you place them is key.

Post Comment Love 19 - 21 July

Hello there and welcome to this week’s #PoCoLo a friendly linky where you can link any post published in the last week. Both Morgan and I know you’ll find some great posts to read, and maybe some new-to-you blogs too, so do pop over and visit some of the posts linked and share some of that love.

This week has been a week dominated by events at work, and reading that back it sounds like it’s been dramatic. It hasn’t been in quite that way, but campus has been full of students celebrating their graduation and it’s been great to see. I do like to watch a graduation ceremony or two while I’m working at my desk, there is something special about them.

Yesterday though I seemed to be mostly in meetings, from just after I got in until an hour before I finished, so I missed all of the ceremonies. And after a day like that my brain is usually (and was) fried by the end of it so leaving on time was the order of the day. It ended up being quite a productful evening though so the day wasn’t a complete write off.

This week my photo is of one of the plants we almost bought for our recently departed box pots. Their common name is Blue fescue, and I’m still rather tempted by them (if not the price).

Blue fescue

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The parterre at Helmingham Hall

We’re getting about a bit this week with the posts I’m sharing, so in between quick visits to Lisbon on Tuesday and Italy tomorrow, today we’re somewhere a little closer to home and have landed in Suffolk. In the parterre at Helmingham Hall to be precise. It’s a great garden to visit, another independent garden where you’re never quite sure what you’re going to find.

We visited during our Suffolk break, and I was surprised to see I’ve only shared a single post from our visit so far, and if you’re a fan of knot gardens, then this is worth a visit if you’re in the area. I originally planned to share photos from the Potager, but somehow my fingers had other ideas, but who am I to argue?

formal lines provide a relaxing space at Helmington Hall in Suffolk

While first off this garden might look very traditional, and its choice of plants - box hedging and santolina, it’s not quite as traditional as you’d expect. It’s in good company as that’s the combination used in the formal gardens of Chenonceau too, though the santolina (the light coloured plant) was more densely planted in Suffolk, which brought a bolder ‘stripe’ to the parterre.

great lines that you just want to follow

The other less traditional thing, but gorgeously so, are these pink cosmos which on our visit were used in the central bed.

cosmos fill the central bed

From a distance, I assumed they were roses, so it was quite a discovery when I got close enough. While I’m converting to roses, i think because these weren’t roses, it was even more of an exciting discovery. It’s quirks like this, or the plant you don’t expect to see that makes a garden a garden and not a forumaic reproduction of what we know works.

the symmetry is reasuring
box topiary in the parterre at helmington hall in Suffolk

It’s a great space, calming and viewable from the house across the moat - which if I’ve not mentioned before is pretty and fascinating, though sadly not open, but I mean, it has a moat. And surely that means you can imagine anything you like about the place and the reality would never match up to it.

The other thing this garden has, which appeals to me, is those gates which lead to the Potager. So soon, I’ll share more of what’s behind them as I’m rather partial to those too, as i discovered at Cheverny.