Showing posts from March, 2024

Postcard from Italy

We're just back from a fabulous time in France and Italy in celebration of significant birthdays and anniversaries. We particularly loved the higgledy hillside clinging buildings we discovered in Genoa and its surrounding coastal villages of Camogli, Portofino , Nervi and the Cinque Terre . I've chosen a photo I took in Camogli to illustrate the perfect combination of bright ice cream coloured buildings, bobbing boats and Mediterranean vegetation we found in many of the villages. Look closer and you'll see many of the buildings have designs painted on them in a technique called sgraffito - one layer of paint or plaster scratched through to reveal a second colour below. Talking of ice cream, the rich dark chocolate fondant flavour was declared our holiday winner. You're probably familiar with pesto and focaccia already - some of the typical regional (Ligurian) cuisine we sampled along the way. Homemade and freshly made that day took them to another level. It's be

Chelsea 2024 sneak peek #1: Clematis

One of the highlights of the recent Garden Press Event was the Guernsey Clematis stand where they showcased their two clematis due for launch* at this year's Chelsea Flower Show. If you're unfamiliar with the company name, then I'm sure you know of the lovely Raymond Evison , who is the breeder behind these two new plants. * = if they're launching them at Chelsea, then it looks like I've let the cat out of the bag 😉 On the left of the photo we have 'Lindsay' with 'Guernsey Flute' on the right. Both have been selected for their plentiful blooms across the entire length of their stems, flowering from May through July with a second flush in September. They grow to around 6 feet in height (90-120cm in metric) and are good candidates for a large pot as well as the more usual site in the garden. 'Lindsay' is the one for sunshine and 'Guernsey Flute' for the shadier side of things - as is the case with most white clematis. Unlike its forebe