Hampton Court
Flower Show 2002


Day 1 Chiswick, Kew
Day 2 RNRS Garden of the Rose, Hatfield House
Day 3 Waddesdon, Chenies
Day 4 Hampton Court
Day 5 Beth Chatto, RHS Hyde Hall
Day 6 Highwood Ash
Day 7 Free Day

Our third day, Wednesday, was a visit to Waddesdon Manor.  Waddesdon is huge and imposing.  Exactly what the Rothschild family wanted and very sure to impress.  We enjoyed the visit here very much because the landscape is so impressive, then you see the inside and are blown away with the opulence.  The crowns that you see was on either side of the driveway and this was done for the 50th Anniversary celebrations.  Look at them closely…they are alive and every 15 minutes a mist fall down around them.  When I was here last year, the gardens were totally different than this visit…wonderful to see that kind of massive change…and I think not at all garish.

I went to the rose garden this time – it was wonderful, lavender and roses and I was the only one sitting there.  I also walked down to the stables this time…are they not incredible!  They house a restaurant now and look at that bronze horse.  Of course Bacchus was in the wine cellar and this time I got a picture of the cellars themselves…an incredible place to visit and of course pick up wine to take home to the person looking after the site while I am out touring!

This Renaissance-style chateau is set within a magnificent garden and was created by Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild in the 1870s for his house parties. The unique collection of French 18th-century objects includes gold boxes, buttons, cabinets, carpetsand two complete Sèvres services. There are major English portraits, as well as paintings from Guardi to Bakst. The new Drawings Rooms show designs from Paris . The landscaped gardens are famous for their fine views, specimen trees, rococo revival aviary and
parterre with striking displays of seasonal bulbs and carpet bedding. The wine cellars contain thousands of bottles of vintage Rothschild wines. Since 1996 Waddesdon has won many awards for its immaculate restoration.


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Chenies impressed me so much last year and didn’t disappoint this year either.  The House is of great historical and architectural interest; Henry VIII and Elizabeth I with their Courts were entertained here. It is surrounded by several beautiful gardens; a white garden, a sunken garden and an extensive Physic garden containing a major collection of plants used in present-day medicine as well as fragrant and culinary herbs. Other features are: a medieval well, underground passages, a reconstructed penitential maze and a reputed 'Priest's Hole'. The House contains contemporary furniture and tapestries and there are beautiful flower arrangements throughout. Interesting exhibitions are held in the new shop building, recently constructed in order to protect the 13th century crypt. Here, too, there is a flower-drying loft; flowers are grown in a special section of the garden for this purpose and are used for the superb dried flower arrangements displayed in the house.  I have some other information on this beautiful garden in my previous tours…it really has quite the history behind it…read it if you can!  Did you see the ornate chimneys on the house?  The chimneys were styled at Hampton Court Palace after these ones.  It is said that when Henry VIII came here, he stayed in the room with the thick black edging around the window, which was unusual in itself, but he has such ulcers on his legs that he could not go up stairs to a more secure and private room.  I noticed that there is also a picture of the garden (with white bench) with nothing but sky behind it…kind of looks like the garden is at the edge of the world, but the land slopes past this garden and the big trees kind of blend in with it to give you this illusion.  And look at those poppies against that grass.
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