Skip to main content

Hidden gems

It is very stimulating, living somewhere new.  We have visited North Berwick masses of times, to shop, walk on the beach or go out for a meal.  We lived just a few miles away.  But now there is time to wander and explore, and I keep coming across unexpected treasures.  The latest is a small garden of exotic plants which, really and truly, I would expect to see on the west coast, not in the chilly east, with the North Sea just a few hundred yards away.  
Banana palms, kangaroo paw, eucalyptus, a foxglove tree, Paulownia tomentosa, native to central and western China and here towering over the border, gingers, a crimson glory vine, scrambling over the wall behind, a Georgia O'Keefe arum lily next to a tree fern, and all sorts of other exotic plants, are growing in a small border, just over the wall from a car park!  There is a small aviary situated alongside, with zebra finches and cockatiels chattering away. I could very easily be back in the botanical gardens in Melbourne.  It is quite wonderful, and slightly surreal.


  1. How amazing! It must be a very sheltered hot spot to grow those! We have a few of those plants in our garden down under!
    Happy exploring! 🌸xx


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Coastal walk from Gullane to North Berwick

By the time I have walked about four miles, my toes are screaming at me - it's the arthritis, you see.  One of the joys of being that little bit older than I was.  However, for a long time, I have been keen to walk along the beaches, and follow the coastal path, between Gullane and North Berwick. So, having worked out the tide times, I decided today was the day, and off we went.
Below is our starting point, the bay at Gullane.  It's a lovely beach, very popular with dog walkers. This is looking east, the direction Tilly and I were going to take.
Looking back, up the Forth, the unmistakable bulk of Arthur's Seat, and Edinburgh's skyline, just clear enough to see.
For most of the walk, there is the choice between wandering along a series of beaches, or following a path along the top of each.
There's no denying it, at heart I am a shell-seeker.  I have loads of shells at home.  We lived on one of the out islands in the Bahamas for a just over a year, a long time ago, and …

A vase on Monday

We are well into the new year now and there are stirrings in the garden.  There are also hangers on from last summer's flowerpots!  I don't care where the colour comes from, as long as it shows and brightens up some rather grey days of early January!

For my vase this Monday, I found a feathery new fennel frond, some marigolds in my raised bed, a few snowdrops, a brave, bright pink geranium, and every garden's stalwart, Erysimum linifolium 'Bowles' Mauve'!
If you have time look back to a Monday vase in December, and then see below!  In the warmth of the kitchen, the horse chestnut sticky buds have come out now, and the bright green spikes of red currant have morphed into delicate white blossoms!

A vase on Monday

Hot colours in my vase this week, although very cold temperatures outside!  I am preparing this post in a sweltering 38 degrees C in Melbourne, and know that I will be travelling back to very chilly Scotland at the weekend!

I bought this bunch of Australian native flowers for my daughter-in-law as an early wedding anniversary treat.  I will be home by the time that celebration comes round next week.  The colours are hot, rich and lovely.  Kangaroo paw, wax flower, grevillea, leucadendron and (I think) a fine leaved gum.