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Travels with the Trug

Bruton is only 20 minutes away from us in Frome. And 5 minutes outside of Bruton is The Newt - a popular place amongst many of my customers. A place I'd heard a lot of good things about but had never found the time to visit.

The gardens at The Newt have been developed over 200 years by several enthusiastic and prominent gardeners. Margaret Hobhouse started things off in Victorian times when she introduced colour, built a greenhouse and planted loads of impressive trees.

In the 1970s the renowned garden designer Penelope Hobhouse further developed Margaret's inspiration, and then Nori and Sandra Pope continued that into the mid-1980s.

And then when Hadspen House changed hands a couple of years ago the new owners brought Patrice Taravella in to develop their ideas - that a garden should be both productive and good to look at.

So leaving Oscar and Ivy behind - dogs aren't allowed - we spent a good few hours wandering around, in search of inspiration. And we found loads of it........

Hadspen House in the distance from one of the two ponds in the Kitchen Garden. Not an awful lot growing in the garden at the moment, but it was interesting to see The Newt following in the foot steps of their near neighbour Charles Dowding and his no-dig approach.

I love cruciferous vegetables. Here's a mustard from one of the cold frames in the Kitchen Garden.

And here's a stone fruit grown against a warm south facing wall. Trained and tied in against sweet chestnut lathes. Glorious.

Another reason for going was to have a look at how The Newt has used metalwork. Here's the detail from a gate. The patina of the iron gates against the brickwork of the wall.

And then a cast metal grid, set in the paving around the Cascade.

There you go. Loads of inspiration on a sunny and breezy Saturday in mid-March. It certainly inspired me. I really do need to get on with my own garden. And allotment. If only I had the time...........


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