The Plant Fair was set within the stunning grounds of Rode Hall in Cheshire. The historic buildings provided a lovely backdrop and plenty of people were browsing the stalls. There was a lovely combination of specialist stalls ranging from Aquilegia and Geum to Hosta and Paeony and plenty of unusual perennials in between, including a Plant Heritage stall.
After much searching, my problem was eventually solved with a tall form of catmint - Nepeta Kubanica. Suitable for semi-shade, the growth is tall enough to be noticed and blue enough not to clash with my yellow background. Perfect, problem solved. But did I stay true to my mission...No, of course not! One of the many plants I have left in my old garden includes Gladiolus byzantinus. Filling the flowering gap between tulips and the summer perennials, this Gladiolus has a real show-stopping magenta colour and seeing a good specimen, I just had to add it to my collection as well. Now I just need to find a sunny corner...
So, mission accomplished, I headed for the gardens at Rode Hall. Although it lies just over the Mow Cop hill from my home, I had never visited before and all I knew them for was their famous Snowdrop walks in February each year. So I was amazed to find a wonderful mixture of bluebell woodland, imaginative stream-side planting, colourful rhododendrons and a well-tended kitchen garden.
I'll be watching the Plant Fair Calendar with interest next year and paying Rode Hall a visit later in the season - I want to see that kitchen garden brimming with produce!
To find out more about Rode Hall visit: