This is the journal of my endeavours to grow a range of fruit, veg and flowers from seed, grow organically, and my attempts to create a personal paradise with 1/2 acre of maintained gardens and 1/2 acre wild meadows. Northern Ireland's average daily high temperatures are 18 °C (64 °F) in July and 6 °C (43 °F) in January. Soil type: Clay

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Gardeners' Playground

Private gardens at The Landscape Centre, Donegore.
When I feel like I need a little inspiration (whether it be Autumn, Winter or Summer) I take a trip to my local garden centre... I really love wondering around and they often have their private gardens open too (I love this). Its a magical place, even if the prices are very high! I have to admit I enjoy their coffee and cakes (homemade and very yummy) however I get the most pleasure wondering around the nature walk or private gardens, which most people don't realise are open to the public. By the time I get home I'm full of ideas!
Everyone needs a mini beach resort in their back garden
(even if there's no ocean within miles)!
Private gardens, The Landscape Centre Donegore.

Above - I discovered this little gem in a newly planted section of the private grounds and it's the BIGGEST hydrangea flower I've ever come across. I guess the little plant has put all its effort into producing one giant flower. Love it! Variety: Hydrangea Midnight Blue.

I wanted to buy some of this (I was too 'cheap' to pay £6.99 for a little plant). Looks like it has a good spreading habit & would suppress weeds.
Variety: Polygonum Darjeeling Red (herbaceous perennial).
I like the idea of mixing old and new and recycling items; this area of the garden at Donegore is relatively newly landscaped. Photo taken 10 Oct 2010. I'll be following progress on their gardens and getting ideas for my own. Too bad they don't have a veg plot!
 I love all the rocks they've used. Not many people could afford this.
Click on the photo to enlarge.

Did I buy anything on my day out to Donegore? Apart from coffee and cake, I bought five winter primrose plants in the 'discount' section at 50 pence per plant. A bargain!


  1. Very nice gardens! I enjoy taking a little trip to the garden center now and then too

  2. Didn't you buy a rock then Kelli??? There's a lot of colour in their gardens, isn't there, considering it's November now? I particularly like the plant with the butterfly on it -- is that a Michalemas Daisy? And in the photo with the wheels, is that a whole bed of catnip?

  3. Loved these photos.There is nothing more fun than going through gardens and getting ideas!