Tuesday, April 5, 2016

My Garden Holiday in England - Salutation Gardens, Sandwich, Kent

Another lovely garden we visited last September was that belonging to The Salutation. The Salutation is a lovely Queen Anne style house, now hotel, designed and built by Edwin Lutyens in 1911-12. The house and its three and a half acre gardens lie very near to the Stour River in the very old town of Sandwich.

Photo by Pam Fray

 We almost did not get to see this garden as we were twenty minute drive away in Botany Bay admiring the chalk hills when a storm hastened our walk back to the car. It was near the end of the day, now raining, and I complained we might never make it to Salutation Gardens. You know you have a wonderful husband when he says, dripping from rain, "Let's go try. It is only a fifteen minute drive away". So off we went. We arrived in Sandwich a half hour before closing, and in fact, the lady in charge of the entrance was packing up as we arrived. But the sun had come out and she saw our earnest faces and let us in. Thank you dear lady.




Like all the gardens we visited dahlias were certainly the highlights at this time of year.




Salutation also had art intermingled through its gardens. It was a pleasant surprise and in the case of these fighting deer a treat for the eyes.




There was a veg garden, with swiss chard close to four feet high. I kid you not.





The Main border, top three photos, is a stunning border in fall. Not far from it is this yellow bed tucked in behind a 'room'.




Our half hour viewing was naturally not enough time however we both came away with a wonderful feeling about the home and gardens. Despite it's 3.5 acres size the gardens felt intimate in scale with many areas to discover.

What has impressed me most was learning last week while watching Monty Don (love that man) that the gardens were flooded in December 2013, less than 2 years earlier. High tides forced water from nearby Christchurch harbour up the swollen River Stour. Homes were all flooded and the lovely Salutation Gardens were suddenly under four feet of water. While thousands of plants were lost this was not apparent during our visit, a true testament to the fabulous gardeners at Salutation.


11 comments:

  1. How heartbreaking it must have been to have seen all their hard work under water. But the new gardens are beautiful! I'm glad you able to visit them. :o)

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    1. It is a lovely spot. The town of Sandwich is medieval and quite charming. Right near the sea too.

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  2. Wonderful garden with bright colorful flowers...

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    1. It was very colourful. Especially those dahlias!!

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  3. Beautiful! Hard to believe that this garden was flooded only two years before your visit.

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    1. It surprised me greatly when I heard Denise, because I never would have guessed so.

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  4. Patty girl now I know WHO to BLAME for this weather ! LOL
    My snow shovel is still out so maybe I can hack the jinx you started some how ? haha
    What an amazing garden and you are right about it conveying an intimate feeling even though it is so huge.
    I love Monty too and watch his shows .. it is hard to believe the flooding happened with how it looks here but it must have been heartbreaking to lose so many plants .. gardening is perpetual motion though and we have to accept that.
    Beautiful pictures girl !
    Joy & her snow shovel ! haha

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    1. Keep that shovel ready Joy they are still calling for more bad weather this weekend :( Thanks for the happy thoughts!

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  5. Amazing how beautiful these gardens are and great work by many talented gardeners.

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    1. Donna, for that trip I can not say I saw an ugly garden. There is an amazing amount of work involved to keep the beds full of flowering plants.

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