One For Mary Tang


The kitchen door was open this morning as I wandered into it. Such was the heady blend of sweet scents that pervaded the room, that I looked around for the bouquets of blooms I felt sure The Head Gardener must have gathered. There were none. The aroma emanated from the garden itself on this much warmer day. This became apparent as I investigated.

Magazine on bench

Testament to Jackie’s occasional breaks, gardening magazines like this one on the Heligan Path bench, are likely to be found in sunshine or shade, depending on her needs at the time. In the right foreground of this picture, on a dry brick plinth stands one of the recently purchased half-dozen stone urns, planted with geraniums, petunias, and, yet to burst forth, begonias. Heucheras, hellebores honesty and hebes fill the near beds, whilst in the background the palm which gives its name to the recently refurbished plot, is budding, which it didn’t do last year. An ornamental grass bends at the feet of the weeping birch, now sporting catkins. There will probably be no more long shots of the garden that do not contain an owl.

Jackie reading on Heligan Path bench

Later, with the bench in shade, I shifted my viewpoint in order to show the scene through what will soon be a cascade of clematis Montana seen, already covering the other side of the dead tree at top right, that will cover the plank of wood used to form the arch. Jackie enjoys a rest.

This evening we attended a quiz night at Helen and Bill’s church hall in aid of CAFOD. Everyone had brought  contribution of finger food and there was a bar where beer, wines, and soft drinks were available, and variously consumed by the assembled company.

Quiz Night WinnerPeter Thomas, a very skilled magician, offering his services free of charge, stepped in at the last minute to manage the quiz, and to entertain us with some marvellous tricks.

Our family members made up two tables; one team consisting of Bill, David and Jen, John, and Rachel; the other of Becky and Ian, Shelly and Ron, and Jackie and me. The first of these groups came second overall, and we won. The winners were each given a certificate to prove it.

This post is for Mary Tang, who likes the panoramic views.


  1. Thank you, Derrick. I am overwhelmed. Yes, I do like those long shots that show off the scale and lay out of the garden, the back drop of trees and the relationship between the gardener and her creation. I’m glad to see Jackie sitting down! 🙂

    1. By the way Sydney is engulfed in smoke from the back burning in the mountains so I can only imagine the fragrance that you are enjoying in your garden with teary eyes and burning throat.

  2. Reblogged this on Life is But This and commented:
    I seldom reblog and I seldom post more than once a day. Today is different; it has to be. How often does a fellow blogger name their post after me? Never before and perhaps never again. Thank you, Derrick.

  3. I must remember to scan all long shots for owls from now on – I almost missed this one! I love that your garden fragrance is permeating the kitchen – the perfume of a garden I think is every bit as important as the visual beauty! And I’m glad to see and read that Jackie takes breaks from her toils!

    1. To the right of the far bench (left of image, just below window), there’s an indeterminate white upright shape, which might be another owl. Blowing up pic doesn’t provide any more detail. Can himself illuminate?

      1. Well spotted Paul, that is an owl- it is made of white china stands about 7 inches high.

  4. I love that time of year when I go outside and there’s always some scent–magnolia, rose, holly–the air is perfumed and feels like paradise. And in fact, paradeisos means garden. Lovely post and shots.

  5. She’s right, the panoramic views do give a lot of insight into the work done on the garden and on the scale. I still love the macro photographs you post of the flowers though 🙂

  6. Pretty shots as ever, and good to see that Jackie knows how to sit still! My bouquet of peonies is sending off all sorts of fragrance and bringing on a sneeze or two.
    And quiz winner?! Congrats to both family groups!–one can only imagine what arcane knowledge was offered to those gathered 🙂

      1. Virtually the first quiz I ever participated in was for our local library Friends group. It was well attended, but the Friends didn’t actually have a team, so one was cobbled together on the night. We not only won, but we even beat the Librarians. We would have scored 100 points (of 120), had I not over-thought the question “What’s the highest peak in the Grampians?”

        The answer is Ben Nevis, which is also the highest in the UK (as enny fule no”), but I was so sure it was a catch question, AND that the Grampians were to the east-centre of Scotland (Ben Nevis is west of centre), that I persuaded the four other team-members to enter another peak instead, so we scored 99.

  7. Well done Derrick. It takes a lot to win a pub quiz! There’s always another team where somebody knows who won the FA Cup in 1905.

  8. What a very pretty garden and I can understand why it’s so scented! The stone urn is reminiscent of a couple in the garden of my childhood home.

  9. A perfect spot for Jackie to read and take in her beautiful garden ~ a fresh and inspiring couple of scenes Derrick.

    1. An activity brought into such as English pubs, where various teams answer a range of questions; the team with the most points wins the prize. The idea is to encourage people to come in and buy drinks. Thank you, Luanne

      1. Charitable ones, such as the one I was in, make a small charge per team to raise money for their cause. It also covers the cost of prizes.

      2. I also HAVE to ask: did the “Bright YOUNG Things” win the Irony Prize, as well??? 🙂

  10. That image of Jackie reading, show from a longer view, is great. What a lovely, lovely garden you have!

  11. The first shot could have been a magazine illustration, seriously gorgeous, Jackie and Derrick!
    What a love game night where your group comes in first and the rest of your group comes in second. How fun that must have been!

  12. Beautiful panoramic shots for us all, and thank you and Mary for the inspiration 🙂 The last shot of Jackie is a classic – welcoming and being welcomed by her garden.

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