Things in Unusual Places #25: Rhino

A hippo roaming the plains at Cotswold Wildlife Park

I giggled when I looked at this photo when I got home as the autofocus on my camera chose the Stipa over the distant Rhinoceros. Perhaps my camera has got too used to plants being the usual focus of my attention? I also giggled at the time because a rhino and Stipa are an unusual garden combination.

However, in this instance perhaps it's not so unusual as I was invited to a bloggers gathering to celebrate the gardens at Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens. Ever since I've known Harriet was weaving her potted plant magic at the Park, it's been on my list to visit. Animals and plants, who can resist?

On our guided tour with Tim - Harriet is the person closest to the camera

Now she and Head Gardener Tim Miles have written their own celebration of the gardens and were keen to share their enthusiasm with us. We weren't disappointed on the day and their book is a delight which forms a lovely souvenir. It's also a sneaky way of inviting us back as there are choice shots of the Park through the seasons.

A small selection of the plants... and animals

Here are just a few of my highlights from the day. As you can see there is an amazing array of different garden styles and plants throughout the Park and the animals looked comfortable in their surroundings. I've since been inspired to plant some Baptisia in my garden (the plant in the centre of the bottom left photo - I have both the usual purple species plant and the yellow cultivar you can see) which I hope to show you on Blooms Day sometime.

Another attraction at the Park - the miniature railway

We didn't get to go on the train, though I reckon I can lure NAH along with me next time on the promise of a ride. I really must start a new series about gardens which appeal to both of us. I can think of Bressingham, Newby Hall, Exbury... are there any more out there?

The enticing book cover


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