I don't believe that gardening is about perfection but in the case of Mount Congreve the impact is pretty close. Right now the rhodedendrons are in full, vibrant bloom. Typically I am more drawn to the simpler blossoms and enjoy the gardeners and their wheelbarrows! There's a whole backdrop of hard work to it. Ambrose Congreve started the garden when he was 11 years old. Now he is 104 and still giving instructions to the gardeners. It is open to the public every Thursday and is free.
There are two walled gardens. One is the informal vegetable and summer border garden where there will be a different border blooming for each month starting in May. There is a lovely gardener's cottage right in the middle of it. The night my youngest son was born at home, the midwife stayed over in this house as the young woman living there was also about to give birth and the snow was thick on the ground. I have lost contact with both of them now, but this visit reminded me of those heady days and nights, during a very cold January.