It's been rather rainy recently and that's kept me indoors browsing the Spring bulb catalogues which arrived recently.  Although Spring is still a long way away it seems it must be time to think about it.  The catalogues are lovely to browse through, especially the Sarah Raven one, but I'm finding it hard to whittle my wish list down.  I also need to remind myself that they will all need planting once they arrive!

While I carry on pondering my selection, I thought I would look out some old photos from my Garden Inspiration file, with the common theme being Spring.

A La Ronde, Devon
 This photo was taken quite a few years ago on an Easter holiday in Devon, and remains a favourite.  A La Ronde is a Regency cottage now owned by the National Trust and its a delightful place filled with the craft work and natural history collections of its original creators.

The forget- me-nots with tulips coming through is a classic combination and delightfully cottagey.  The combination of pink, white, lilac tulips is enhanced by the contrast of very dark ones, which I assume are Queen of the Night and then a few bright orange ones at the far end.  The white Dicentra (now Lamprocapnos) adds a little more height and a contrast of form.

Hidcote - The Old Garden
 Another pinky, purply combination with a sprinkling of blue but this time from Hidcote.  This photo was also taken a few years back, but has remained one of my favourite spring images.

I'd like to develop an area of my garden to make some sunny spring borders like these.

Camassias at Killerton, Devon
 It was on the same Easter holiday in Devon that we visited Killerton House.  This was the first time I had seen Camassias and they were a stunning sight.  I'm not sure I have the space to create this kind of display, but I might get just a few to see how they like it here.

Sissinghurst - The Lime Walk
 Probably the ultimate spring display of bulbs is seen in the Lime Walk at Sissinghurst, where all the bulbs you can think of are displayed in endless different combinations.  There are borders to each side of the limes which also contain bays holding large terracotta pots of tulips.  In addition the base of each lime tree has its own planting of miniature bulbs.  It's exquisite, and creates a different effect to the gardens above, where a broader picture is aimed for.  Here the bulbs are there to be studied and appreciated in detail for their differences in shape and colour.

Sissinghurst - Pots of Tulips 

Planting round one of the Lime trees

Sarah Raven tulips

Thankfully beautiful spring effects can be achieved much more easily, albeit on a smaller scale.  These gorgeous tulips were bought from Sarah Raven.  Her carefully chosen combination of colours look beautiful.  I'd have bought these again but I can't see this selection in the catalogue this year. 
White Lily flowered tulips in the Rose Garden

Whilst I love planning new areas of the garden, I mustn't forget the existing ones.  These white tulips are not reliably perennial and need topping up each year, so they need adding to the shopping list too.


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