|The all important group photo - in the International Rose Test Garden.|
I'm a bit hard to spot because I don't have the rest of my avatar with me ;)
3 days, 80 bloggers, 90 degree heat, 15 gardens, 3 nurseries and hundreds of photographs. How do I begin to summarise the Fling? Like Victoria I tended to my own garden first, which helped to sooth the jetlag fug in my brain and let the sights, sounds and scents of my trip settle down more comfortably.
|Portland is known as "The City of Roses", so a large test garden is appropriate -|
the scent hits you smack in the face before you've entered the garden!
"What can you learn by coming to the Fling?", was the question I was asked most often at Portland. The implication being that by coming from England - the cradle of all that is good about gardening - I should find all I need right here.
|Old Germantown Gardens - the only example we saw of the English style, which was|
primped to perfection. The ant-like bloggers in the photo, give you an idea of its scale
My response is "Loads!" - there is so much which can be learned from an intensive immersion in a different country simply by going, observing and talking to like minded people and experts. It helps that the hard-working Portland Fling committee provided us with a smorgasbord of the very best the city has to offer.
|With my public planting hat on, it was interesting to see how the lush |
wrap-around planting at McMenamins Kennedy School helped to soften
the building and give it new life as a lodging, dining and meeting space
I won't be reviewing every garden and nursery visited, but instead I'll draw out the main lessons I've learned over the coming weeks using examples drawn from all of them. It will form my very own mini design course which I hope will be of interest to you too.
|English garden visits may be fueled by tea and cake, but in Portland |
freshly baked cookies, iced water or juice and local wines are just the job!
All our hosts were most generous with their time and hospitality, thank you.
Not everything deserves a post to itself, so today contains a few snippets by way of a warm up. Where I've linked to a garden (apart from the rose test garden), this will take you that garden's entry on the Garden Bloggers Fling blog, where the Portland committee have introduced each garden and nursery, then provided a Linky for all the Fling attendees to link to their thoughts and observations.
There's also a miscellaneous, "kitchen sink" section, for blog posts like this one :)