Bodnant in the Autumn Sun

 I set off rather early for Thursdays Development Officers meeting so, finding myself with an hour to kill, I took the chance to have a lunch time walk around Bodnant Gardens.  What a difference the underpass has made to accessing the garden, no busy road to cross just a sweeping arc down and under a light and airy tunnel and into the gardens. The autumn light is very special, the drive up north was wonderful with the bones of the land picked out by the low sun, so the gardens too had a special air about it, some beds still in full flower others starting to show their winter structure.

You could however tell how much colder it has been as, despite there still being plenty of colour  in the borderss, there were hardly any insects about except for on one lone Welsh Poppy which must have had some special attraction to it as it had several small flies.

Even the huge patches of Sedum Spectabilis did not have any takers so perhaps the nectar bar was empty.

It had rained in the morning and the barks of some of the trees were particularly beautiful with the contrasting colours and crannies brought out sharply by the damp.

However the ‘naked ladies’ (autumn crocus) looked very sad as their delicate stems had been battered to the ground.

I was interested to get a glimpse of the new ‘Winter Gardens’ area which will be open to the public for the first time later this year and is specially designed to have winter interest. It will be the first time Bodnant has opened in the winter.

Driving up the autumn looked more ‘normal’ the further north I got. To me the trees in South Wales don’t change the colour of their leaves while drawing back the important nutrients and minerals before they are shed any more, they just seem to shrivel. Once I got to mid Wales things started to look more normal and in the gardens, assisted no doubt by the exotic species, there was lots of autumn colour. 

I was really glad I took this opportunity as there was a real air of peace and tranquility  in the Gardens and I went off to the real work of the day at the EW development officers meeting revived.

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