Dec 19, 2012

Suffolk pink at Wyken Hall

            A good gardener and friend  had wanted to visit this garden, one that he had known about for a while, and asked me to come along. Always knowing an adventure, and good company, when I see it,  we set off out of the city. The palette soon changed from the gray colors of London to the refreshing greens of the countryside, with us whizzing past patchwork fields and down country lanes.
       Welcome, to the beautiful gem called Wyken Hall, where the gardens work there way around the house and the beauty is in the details.  The first, and most important thing the eye picks up on is the choice of color for the house.  The unusual color gives great contrast to all of the green that surrounds it, and in some parts creates great harmony. 

      Quincunx... Yes, say it again. Quincunx. Never had I seen one of these before or  even knew that it  had a name. (And I pride myself in knowing the names of the different garden and landscape tricks.) A quincunx is a grouping of 5 equal interlocking circles or points, with four being on the outside and one in the center, or arranged in a cross.  Buxus was the plant of choice in this case.
In the center circle is a commissioned fountain created by  Clive Davies who is a potter based in Suffolk. The colors are blue, white, and a reddish orange which is picked up by the house.
        The base for the quincunx is made up of brick and local knapped flint and shows the beauty of great craftsmanship.
Garden beds around this part of the house are very soft and pleasing to the eye, relying on simple shapes and colors, rather than being too complex.  
Kitchen garden bounty drying in the glasshouse. Imagine the smell.
 Coming to the back gardens behind the house, you enter the red hot border.  This is where the house and garden dance together, creating a flurry of excitement with an analogous color scheme that works so well.  The house became more alive to me at this point.
Achillea millefolium and flint wall.
Linking the gardens croquet lawn to the meadow beyond, where your eyes cross over a handmade gate, are a pair of sculpted sheep who seem as if they have escaped the rest of the herd.
Croquet Lawn
View of the rose garden, which used to be an to be an orchard, but is now filled with old fashiones roses, herbaceous perennials and bluebells.
Always exploring, I found sculpture hidden in a corner of the rose garden in the hedge.
          At first glance when arriving at the garden, I was not sure if the color of the house was something I really enjoyed, but it became my favorite feature of the garden. It  warmed  everything up and soon enough I was wondering what I can paint at home to have that color near me all the time.  I am so curious to know what it would look like in winter with a garden full of snow.  The copper red lime-wash, we were told, was called 'Suffolk Pink' in Elizabethan times. Did you notice the detail of the angel above the windows, sublime.
            If ever you have the chance to walk around the garden with the owner, please do, it will give you much more insight into unlocking the details that will help you understand its character more.     Thank you for warming me up Wyken Hall.

1 comment:

  1. What an amazing front door, and a wonderful assault on the senses that Suffolk pink is against the green. So good to be 'woken up', and shown other ways of making a garden sing. Reminds me of the title of a book I enjoyed reading called 'Shocking Beauty' by Thomas Hobbs.Thank-you for an enjoyable 'walk' around the garden through your photos and words, and the peek at your sketchbook - much appreciated.