The Nepal Himalaya Park

Last week we had a bank holiday here in Bavaria – Ascension Day. This meant that an ideal spot for meeting up with friends would be open… the Nepal Himalaya Park near Regensburg.

I have never visited a garden in Germany that captivated me quite like this one! It is most certainly not a traditional ‘show garden’, where plants are placed for effect and labelled with care. No, this was more of a plant fanatic’s paradise, a playground for the owner of the park to see what he can grow, with a mostly oriental theme; a little chaotic, quite wild in places, but absolutely charming in my eyes!

The Nepal Himalaya Pavillon

Photo from the Pavillon website: http://www.nepal-himalaya-pavillon.de

The garden is set into a south-facing hillside in part of a former quarry, and the main ‘attraction’ which inspired it is the Himalaya Pavillon. This temple was actually the Nepalese exhibit at the Expo 2000 in Hanover. It was painstakingly dismantled and rebuilt here in its new home. The garden then arose around it a few years later, so is still relatively young.

My photos are not brilliant as I used my mobile phone, but I think you can get the idea of what the temple looks like surrounded by enormous trees, rhododendrons and azaleas.

I was so pleasantly surprised when I walked through the gate, as it was not at all what I had expected. Along with the traditional perennials, native wild flowers and many herbs there were a lot of unusual plants unknown to me, which I had to look up when I got home. So if you see I have made a mistake, please feel free to correct me!

Only recently I had looked up Amsonia, when Jason from Garden in a City mentioned them. Then there they were – the first flower I laid my eyes on and the first time I had seen one.

Amsonia illustris

I found the foliage particularly striking.

As we walked down a slope past a pond, I noticed Anthericum everywhere, along with patches of blue Corydalis and various Euphorbias.

This plant kept popping up too… I believe it is a type of Echium, although I personally only know the blue sort that grows by the roadsides here.

Echium amoenum

The Japanese garden didn’t do much for me, but as we passed that we came to a shadier area where hostas and ferns were thriving…

I wonder if anyone can tell me what the tall plant is between the yellow irises and poppies… It looks kind of familiar.

Along the way there were small temples, bells and a prayer wheel – all original pieces shipped from Nepal. But I was focussed on the plants!

Lilac

The newest part of the garden is the Chinese Garden – it is very wild, overrun with native wild flowers, but still managing to make quite an impact with the wooden bridges and gateways placed at intervals and the setting itself in the rockiest part of the old quarry is fairly dramatic…

Finally, the plant of the day: Lupins!

On our way home we noticed blue ones growing by the roadsides – something we don’t see in our valley at home.

The website is unfortunately all in German, but there is a virtual tour of the garden here, navigable without any language.

And should you ever visit this part of the world, I would definitely recommend this to serious plant lovers! What kind of gardens do you like to visit best – wild and weedy or formal and tidy? 😉

The Tuesday View: 30th May 2017

My weekly look at one part of my garden is helping me focus on planting errors and successes. One thing I noticed this week is how the view is slowly being obstructed by the taller plants in the foreground… some more of that Lysimachia will have to go after it has flowered…

In fact, I think we need to look at the view from the opposite direction…

Now you can see all the weeds! 😉

The Aquilegia and Siberian iris are going over very quickly in the heat. But there are lots of Campanulas and Lychnis to come. And at the moment there are other plants to focus on here. Peony Festiva maxima started opening yesterday afternoon – it is my favourite of all, as it smells so lovely and I have plenty of them for cutting.

The other stars are the poppies, popping up in all sorts of new spots this year!

In the picture below you can also see how tall the Aruncus is growing, bottom right.

The greenery in the foreground here is the Golden Rod. Usually there would also be two very tall and lovely Fennel plants here too, but they were a casualty of our very cold winter with several weeks of permafrost. (I also lost two of my Buddleias and my lovely Gaura lindheimeri).

Finally, here is a long-shot from below the Aruncus bed…

The ferns have put on a lot of growth, but if it’s a hot summer they will need cutting down by the end of June and will hopefully send out new growth a few weeks later. They were here – in the full sun – when we came to the house, and only last until autumn if the summer is cool and wet, like last year.

If you would like to join me with a weekly look at one particular view of your garden, just leave a link below in the comments.

Have a great gardening week!

In a Vase on Monday: Centre Piece

It is very hot again this Monday, probably hitting 30°C later, so any flowers I want to enjoy before they wilt are coming indoors! My Centaurea succumbs to blackfly and then mildew almost every year, so I picked a single perfect flower that had just opened, and together with some Centranthus ruber that is just opening it is the central focus in this week’s vase.

The feathery petals are echoed by the fluffy spidery Pulsatilla seed heads which I always like to use in vases…

And for contrast the lovely Alchemilla mollis..,

The bluest of blue skies in the background made me wonder if this Centaurea really is blue, or perhaps slightly mauve?

I hope you also have blue skies today.

A couple of Hosta leaves were added, to be appreciated before the snails discover them. 😉 And a single stem of young birch.

Thanks, as always, go to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme. She has a stunning rose to share this week.

 Happy gardening!

The Tuesday View: 23rd May 2017

I actually took my photos for today’s Tuesday view on Monday (cheating a little due to time available!) but when I woke up this morning and raised the blinds, I was greeted by the first of my Oriental poppies. I know it’s just a small orange blob here, but soon the whole rockery will be lit up by them!

They were sown in containers many years ago, and then planted out late summer. Since then they have multiplied and come back reliably every May.

Now back to this year’s Tuesday view…

The Siberian irises are now opening alongside the early peony. I like these much better than the straggly bearded iris…

The Aquilegias are in full bloom now too, here with both bearded and Siberian Iris in the background…

And beyond the rockery across the ‘lawn’ the day lily foliage and Aruncus are getting taller and taller…

If you would like to join me in showcasing one particular view of your garden each week, to follow it through the seasons, please do! Just leave a comment below so we can find you. Thanks also to all those who have started to join in.

😀

Happy gardening!

In a Vase on Monday: Highlights of May

One of the highlights of May is definitely the Aquilegias, reaching for the sky in shades of purple, blue and pink…

For my Monday vase this week I chose to cut some of these tall stalks to contrast with an iris that has just opened and the lovely pale and mid-blue Camassias.

I added Geranium phaeum (again!)…

And on the outer edges I also added a white Geranium sylvaticum ‘Album’, which is not quite as prolific as the chocolatey purple G. phaeum but just as tall (about 60-70cms), and grows well in complete shade, adding lovely highlights to my North border.

What are the highlights in your garden right now? Do you have particularly tall plants in May?

Thanks go to Cathy, who hosts this wonderful meme at ‘Rambling in the Garden‘.

The Tuesday View: 16th May 2017

It’s hot! A few summery days lie ahead of us before the next thunderstorms are forecast, and I shall make the most of the time I have available to do some weeding and cut back a few things. As you can see in today’s view, everything is growing like mad and getting greener and greener!

I think some of that Lysimachia needs to come out before the clematis obelisk on the left gets swallowed up! (The bell has almost disappeared already!)

The acer is the star this week. It is a lovely fresh pale green at this time of year…

And if we look through it we can see the first of the irises…

And look, a peony has opened! It looks a bit like how I felt this lunchtime in the hot sun though!

The lovely aquilegia below (‘Rose Queen’) is actually not quite within the Tuesday view, but it is one of the first to open. The others are almost all mixes that have spread around over the years and are only just starting to bloom. They seem taller than ever this year!

If you have a view of your garden that would like to focus on and share through the seasons, please join me and my fellow Tuesday View crowd and leave a link below in the comments.

Happy May!