Trelissick Garden, Cornwall

St Mawes, Cornwall

St Mawes

Not a bad view from your table for lunch.

The weather has been glorious for almost a month now. Hot with barely a cloud in the sky. Not the best scenario for the temperate garden maybe, nor its withering gardener.. we’re just not used to this in Devon. Where’s the rain? But it felt wrong to miss the opportunity for a day out. Especially with the next renovation project looming and knowing full well that we’ll be confined to barracks for the next three weeks at least.



King Harry Ferry

It also happened to be our wedding anniversary. So where does the romantic husband take his water phobic wife for a carefree and relaxing excursion? On a boat. Well of course he does. It’s the quickest way by far to get across the Carrick Roads and there’s a garden on the other side. I can still hear him saying it..



To be fair to Mike, as regular readers may recall I’ve cracked the chain ferry thing in recent years (here). It didn’t stop me having an extra large glass of wine with lunch though I can tell you. Anaesthetic. Just in case. The Dearly Beloved took the picture above, from the front rail of the ferry.

While he was away a nice man with a ticket machine came to the car for the fare. “Single or return?” I may have confirmed the former option a little too emphatically.



This chap was well settled in on the upper deck. He goes back and forth all day.

Even if they did have to handcuff him to do it.



But there is hardly any movement and to be honest I didn’t even realise we’d started the crossing until I happened to glance out sideways. The river view, on first appearances, has much in common with that last experience on the Australian Daintree with the forest reaching down to the water on either side. It’s about the same distance too although this boat takes longer to get across. Or that’s how it seemed. Here you’re allowed out of the car. I managed the short walk to the side of the ferry where the curious passenger can peer down a glass covered hole in the floor if she chooses and see the chains passing through. Oh my. No crocodiles though. I take my comfort where I can.



Trelissick House

The estate has been under the ownership of the National Trust since 1955 on condition that the family be allowed to continue to live in the house. Thus, while the gardens have been available to the public for many years it’s only since 2014 that the house has been open too. The then incumbent, William Copeland, decided to downsize and move his young family to a ‘normal sized’ house nearby, auctioning off the contents including many antiques. The National Trust acquired some of these to restock the house but it’s fair to say it has still lost much of its ‘lived in’ feel.



The view from the terrace. Not one I’d find easy to leave.



As with so many of the gardens on the south Cornish coast the borders have a tropical feel.



A none-too-brilliant shot of Impatiens tinctoria. The breeze got up!

It does show how much the West Country needs rain. Almost unbearable to see plants wilting so heavily: this was the only perky bloom I could find.



Better luck in the shade. In Cornwall hydrangeas are often to be found in this particularly vibrant shade of blue.



Trelissick is renowned for its shrubs and trees. The rhododendrons, azaleas and camellias are almost out of their season now but the woodland walks are still truly spectacular. And a welcome relief on such a hot day.



Mahoosive monkey puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana)



 And Monterey cypress (Cupressus macrocarpa)



Jack Lilley’s summerhouse, with views back across the river. The estate is situated on its own peninsular, there is water on three sides.



The Water Tower

It even has its own fairy tale castle.. where you can actually stay! Four floors, one room per floor. Next time maybe. And yes, there is a land route. The same one I’d called up on the sat nav for the homeward journey..