The Garden Community for Garden Lovers

In anticipation


So, I have been pretty quiet these past few months, predictably, being away from the garden. But, I had a nice e-mail from a member the other day asking me how I was getting on, and it made me realise how long it has been since I was on GOY, and how much I miss it.
In addition to ‘work’, I’ve been reading a lot of garden history recently, including Andrea Wulf’s Brother Gardeners and Margaret Willes. The Making of the English Gardener (who I met at a seminar recently). It begs the question, what can one do when away from one’s garden? In literature and art we always read of returning home, but the trope seems to refer to a house (including the family instilled in it), or to ‘society’, but less often returning to the garden. I wondered therefore whether any of you can remember stumbling upon specific references in literature or correspondence to the pleasure of returning to one’s garden. The theme of being separated from one’s garden — and hopefully being re-united — would, I suppose be the theme of an interesting book. All this is to say that I am pining (excuse the pun) for my garden, after almost a year away from it, the more so because we have only been acquainted for a short time and I have much to learn about IT (incidentally, should a garden be feminine or masculine…or perhaps I should steer clear of that can of worms).

Needless to say, as I replied to the interested GOY enquirer, we will be returning to Japan at the end of March, in time to see our first spring in Hakone. I’m just so hoping that the promise (all those cherry trees, irises and flowering trees — including a magnolia Elizabeth that I planted a while ago) will come to fruition. I’m particularly interested to see whether the 30 weeping cherry will deliver its blossom. It is alas North-facing, but since we cleared a couple of diseased Sawara Cypress, it should now receive more sun, and may flower (?). The wild mountain Wisteria that I hard pruned out of necessity — which I reported in a blog a few months ago — is also going to be fascinating to watch. It’s a monster, but hopefully a monster tamed, and one willing to break into bloom. Who knows? The delight is in the unknown.

My plans for the garden have basically remained unchanged (getting the lawn down being the priority), but we have recently had a change in personal decor taste, now very much into the art deco, and so this may slightly alter the shapes and lines I try to put down vis-a-vis paths and borders. Talking of which, can anyone suggest a good Art Deco garden in the UK that I might be able to visit before I leave Cambridge?

Once back in Japan I am planning to put my blogs on a more regular and disciplined footing: that is to say weekly. I continue to seek the indulgence of GOY members.

Kind regards,


More blog posts by ptarotuos

Previous post: Greenhouse selection

Next post: Wild Hostas at Shadowlands, Japan



Good luck on your travels :o)

15 Feb, 2012


I cannot believe your year is nearly up, how time flies when having fun, thats hoping you have had fun whilst being here, its good to hear from you Ptaro, I fully understand the pining for ones garden, incidently mine is part of Mother Earth so to me that makes mine female, lol, some of the content is definitely male though, lol.
Enjoy the rest of your stay and catch up when you are back in your garden, it will be lovely to see it again...

15 Feb, 2012


Coleton Fishacre in Devon is an Art deco House and Garden. It opened for the season on 1st March. Look at The National Trust website for more information. If that is too far away then google art deco gardens and see what comes up closer to you. I'm delighted to hear you are going to be able to return to your garden so soon. I always rush out to the garden as soon as I get back from an absence so I can only imagine your joy to be returning home. Safe journey. My Prunus incisa Kojou -no-mai planted in memory of those lost has just started flowering. It holds out the hope of regeneration and I hope that is going on apace in Japan.

22 Mar, 2012


Thanks Scotsgran,
I am so pleased to hear that the Prunus is flowering well: you are so right that the blossom holds out the hope of regeneration. The blossom is healing as it melts away. To say that I am eagerly anticipating a return to the house and garden is an understatement. We've had the house almost 2 years now but never seen it in the Spring for various reasons. We have the moutain cherries, the weeping cherry, the kinmokusa (I guess a kind of Daphne), the Magnolia Elizabeth that I planted, the azaleas, the camelias (though perhaps now over), the wild yellow irises, the gentian, the persimmon, the apple trees, pear trees, wisteria, mountain roses -- most of which I have never seen flowering, and just hope that they put on a magnificent display. I feel almost like those botanists and plant hunters; just shivering at the possibilities. And many of the above are the mature trees that we inherited. I haven't even begun to plant and with a list as long as my arm -- no doubt too long for my wallet -- it is going to be a year of building for the future in the garden. Laying the foundations for what I hope will be one of the msot beautiful private gardens in Hakone -- certainly the most English. I'll be snapping like crazy with my camera as things come out -- seeking advice from GoY members, trying to identify things: in short probably one fo the most active members of GoY. Oh, and this drama -- and that's what I think it will be -- will be going into a book form: 'Shadowlands: an experiment in gardening'. best, ptarotuos

22 Mar, 2012


May all your dreams come true Pt.

22 Mar, 2012

Add a comment

Recent posts by ptarotuos

Members who like this blog

  • Gardening with friends since
    10 Sep, 2010

  • Gardening with friends since
    14 Aug, 2008

  • Gardening with friends since
    7 Jul, 2009

  • Gardening with friends since
    22 Oct, 2008