greentapestry : Mistaken Identity

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Mistaken Identity


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"No two gardens are the same. No two days are the same in one garden''

- Hugh Johnson

Now think of Hampton Court and most people think of the beautiful palace and gardens near the river Thames, which King HenryVIII acquired from Cardinal Thomas Wolsey in 1528. By the time he finished developing the palace in about 1540, it was one of the most modern, sophisticated and magnificent in England. It also not surprisingly became Henry's favourite palace.

I am not referring to the palace though but to the castle Hampton Court in Hope-Under- Dinmore and near the river Lugg in the county of Herefordshire. This Hampton Court also has a rich and fascinating history. The estate was a gift by Henry IV to a knight Sir Rowland Lenthall, who fought at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415. This gift was made at the time of his marriage to one of the King's cousins Margaret Fizalan. Lenthall built the original quadrangular manor house in 1427.

Last week I touched upon my passion for garden visiting. I did not have room to include the gardens at Hampton Court which we discovered for the first time last summer. We were returning home last July from a rather wet holiday, on a day which was grey, cool and spit spotting with rain. We decided to break off our journey to visit Hampton Court, which I had vaguely heard about but was not sure what to expect. Although there had been beautiful gardens at this spot they had fallen into neglect. In 1994 work began to restore them. Estate masons and carpenters have carefully restored many original structures and inspirational new features have been added. These include water canals, island pavilions, herbaceous borders, a Dutch garden, a sunken garden with a waterfall and a maze which was rather challenging. Umbrellas and mazes are not good partners. There is also an organic kitchen garden.

We were taken aback by our first sight of Hampton Court and the rest of the visit was just as magical. The gardens were absolutely stunning and took my breath away. This is really a garden with the wow factor. Luckily serious rain held off until after we left and now and again the wet stuff held its breath. I imagine that it took some years for the gardens to mature so maybe it was perfect timing for a first visit. We have vowed to return again this year so watch this space for a report on our return. I can't wait !

I'm afraid that my photos of the gardens did not do the subject matter justice. Hover over them with your cursor and click to see them in more detail.

This is my post for ABC Wednesday which is the inspiration of Denise Nesbitt. Don't hesitate but hop over there now and hang round for a while !


  1. I does indeed look like a place where pone could wader around for hours, - both with and without camera. Thank you for sharing!

  2. The gardens are simply gorgeous. I'd want to return several times a year and spend hours each time.

  3. I love these gardens. Wonderful. Nice to see your photos.

  4. How exquisite! I love going to look at gardens too. All that green and those dazzling colors! It just makes my day! It makes me think of how creative God is to have made the world so beautiful and so full of wonder!

  5. Hi Anna

    I've clicked the pick(s) and think they're just glorious. I don't know what it is about blue in a border- works for me everytime.

  6. Your collage is exquisite.
    Your second quote could illustrate my post about clocks and time !

  7. I am intrigued by your line "umbrellas and mazes don't mix!" Your garden collage is delightful.

  8. If those photos don't do it justice, it must be unbelieveably spectacular! I've got to add this to the burgeoning list of gardens to visit should I ever actually make it to Britain.

  9. I must admit that I didn't know there were two Hampton Courts. It looks very attractive from your pictures so I'll add it to my gardens to visit list!

  10. I know so many people who have got lost here. Great montage.

  11. A dream of a wonderful garden :) Great H :)

  12. Lovely gardens. How much fun it must be to 'putter' around in one, or to just hang about and absorb the tranquility.

  13. Wonderful Anna, I just love your english gardens. I wish I could be there.
    Thank you for a most lovely H post.

    Hugs Tyra

  14. Indeed, I was thinking about the Hampton Court of Henry VIII that we visited long time ago. This Hampton Court is just as lovely.

  15. Anna - Hampton Court is one of my all time favourite gardens being not more than about 30 mins from me. I posted about it last summer here
    and here

  16. Anna, so often it is the garden that we don't know what to expect that surprised us. Sometimes one feature is written about that other better parts are ignored. I look forward to your post of your next visit. Like you I visit a lot of gardens each year but I haven't got to Herefordshire - yet!

    Best wishes Sylvia

  17. What a lovely, summery collection of photos! I didn't know of this Hampton Court, only the Palace of... Very pretty education, thanks!

  18. Anna

    What beautiful gardens!
    Garden Thyme with the Creative Gardener

  19. Those photos are lovely, so if you are thinking that they do no justice to the garden, it must be very beautiful then.

  20. Anna, thank you so much for finding your way from Shirl to me which in turn has led me to you, and what a very interesting site you have here. I have always loved visiting beautiful gardens, large or small, often a Sunday afternoon treat!

    Looking through your blog I loved the Kipling quotation and also the housework 'mantra'...oh yes, that is very me!

    I don't think I could bring myself to put those beautiful secateurs to work, maybe you could use them in an ornamental way somehow in your garden.

  21. Thanks for a very informative post. I didn't know there were 2 Hampton Courts. We visit the London one often, maybe 3 or 4 times a year and the Rose gardens in June are fabulous. I must visit the one mentioned in your post now as it look beautiful. Have a great week :)

  22. Lovely, lovely! I have had the pleasure of visiting Hampton Court on Thames, but had no idea the other Hampton Court existed. What beautiful gardens! Thanks for sharing information about this wonderful place.

  23. Anna, your photo collage is beautiful...and I did enlarge to view and enjoy the gardens...thx for the info also...

  24. Anna, I love this post!
    BTW, I've been thinking about your question on my blog. I've visited all the gardens that I write about. Hundreds in the U.S., for my guidebooks, newspaper columns and articles.I've sought out many in England, France, Italy and Spain, but a lifetime won't be enough to visit all those on my must-see list. England amazes me - I can't believe how many gardens have been created. I'm incredibly impressed by the sophistication and beauty of small private gardens in b&bs and the Yellow Book, not to mention the National Trust, etc.

  25. Wonderful garden many delightful combinations of plants...It's time to plan a trip to see some of these great gardens...gail

  26. Anna this is such an interesting post.
    The pictures are fabulous too - I was particularly intrigued by top right picture, it looks like a really interesting sculpture in there

  27. Your comments are all much appreciated so thanks to all of you !

    ABCers, I will be over to you soon if I have not already visited.

    Rob, I am with you on the colour blue :) It's also the colour I wear the most too.

    I do hope you make it over here one day MMD - so many beautiful gardens to visit.

    Do try to get there if you can Easygardener - you won't be disappointed !

    Hampton Court is on my all time favourites list now Helen. I will check out your posts soon - thanks muchly for the links :)

    You have hit the nail on the head there Sylvia - it sometimes can be the garden where we don't know what to expect that bowls us over. I hope that you get the chance to visit Herefordshire one day. There are a number of beautiful gardens there and most attractive countryside.

    Welcome and thanks so much for your comment Debbie :)

    Welcome Shy Songbird and thanks for visiting. Garden visiting is indeed a most delicious Sunday afternoon pastime. The secateurs remained unused but a good idea of yours to use them as an ornamental feature. I will work on that. Thanks so much for the idea :)

    I would love to see the Surrey Hampton Court Palace gardens Maureen :) Have only had a quick glimpse on my way into the Hampton Court Flower Show !

    Alice, you are so lucky to have had the opportunity to do all that garden visiting :) We do indeed have some beautiful gardens here, but I am sure that there are just as many on your side of the pond.

    Thanks Gail. Planning is all part of the fun too !

    Thanks for your comment Keewee - the gardens at Hampton are indeed stunning.

    Glad that you enjoyed the post Karen. It is indeed a sculpture - mainly wood with an inset of a stained glass picture of what I think is a hare. I did not want to trample through the growth to get nearer but it was most eye catching. Will try and get a close up next time.


All your comments are much appreciated and treasured. I wil try to reply to everyone who leaves a comment, but it may take me a few days, especially when I start spending more time in the garden and at the lottie. I know that you will understand :) I am sure that I will also visit your blog if I have not already done so. If you have any specific questions I will either reply to them here or you can email me at :


- Anna.