The little village of Bressingham roughly marked the halfway stage of our recent trip to Norfolk and the resplendent Bressingham Gardens were the perfect place to stop for one of our legendary picnics and to stretch our legs before the second part of our journey to the East coast.
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In the early 1950s, British horticulturist Alan Bloom began creating the incredible gardens that span nearly 20 acres. The infamous Dell and Foggy Bottom gardens contain literally thousands of species of plants in every hue imaginable and are set against a medley of waltzing emerald green paths for the visitor to glide along.
Chondrosum gracile or Mosquito grass (above right) was a new discovery for me whilst mooching around the gardens. I wouldn't normally be attracted to such small grasses in a garden but I love the unusual right angles of the flowers that magically vibrate and quiver on the breeze.
The late summer sunshine decided to play peek-a-boo for the much of the two hours we spent in the gardens but the erupting polychromatic island beds which Bressingham is famous for, more than made up for the cloudy skies above. Those that are in need of a healthy dose of colour therapy should look no further; your synesthetic senses can almost hear the gardens humming with colour as you cruise the grounds.
The trick to planting in this retro style is to ensure that the plants work from every angle a feat that the Blooms have mastered to perfection over the past fifty years.
With tummies full, retinas recharged and the image of Hercules standing by the car tapping his foot, we piled back into our ride, waving goodbye to the fabulous gardens at Bressingham as we roared off towards the coast.
......Are we there yet?