My Photo

Flowers and Gardens














Cornflower book group

Please note

  • Sidebar book cover thumbnail pictures are affiliate links to Amazon, and the storefront links to Blackwell's and The Book Depository are also affiliated; should you purchase a book directly through those links, I will receive a small commission. Older posts may also contain affiliate links to one of those bookshops. I am not paid to produce content and all opinions are my own.

« Kathleen Ferrier | Main | Cookbook of the week - Tender Vol. I »


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Desperate Reader

I dream about a huge walled garden with a house that looks out over it and definitely a glasshouse for growing oranges and grapes. Something big enough to break down into separate spaces/rooms to try out all the plant enthusiasms I'm over taken by before practical considerations take over.

Ros Clarke

I actually really like the garden I have, but I will admit that it does need fewer weeds and a place to sit. Oh, and I would love a Victoria Plum tree. And if we're really dreaming, a swimming pool.


There's something about a walled garden that's so appealing. It's a very English thing, isn't it? I live in Canada and have not encountered anything like it. I have seen in in books and magazines of course, so definitely a walled garden opening into a lovely English garden that runs into the woods, by a brook or something.

Favourite flower? Probably big cabbage-y perfume-y English roses a la David Austin.

*sigh* Lovely day dream. Thanks.


When I was a child, The Secret Garden was my favourite book and ever since my idea of the perfect garden has been a walled one. There must be a door into it, with faded, peeling green paint. Once inside, you can never see the whole garden at once but wander around the paths (another important feature) finding something new around every corner. It would be big enoough to have seasonal areas, so that you could have, for example, a whole bed of Iris. Happy dreams!


Water and woodland for me. I moved recently and have already had a small wildlife pond and bog edging dug in my new garden. What I'd really really like is a stream at the bottom of the garden that could be dammed to make a swimming pond. As I idly swam among the rushes I'd look out on my wildflower meadow and woodland. If it were summer in March I'd have Pimms in the scented, walled garden and know that I'd died and gone to heaven or just elbowed Duchess Camilla out of the way.


My own garden, but with the time to do something with it.

Barbara T

What a terrific premise for a book. This spring I am trying to introduce some highly-scented flowers into my garden. I have a friend who is blind, and she has made me much more aware of fragrances wafting through the air. I shall put Sweet Peas for Summer on my list of books to buy when I am in Britain. Thanks for featuring it.


A vegetable garden, absolutely, with lots of tomatoes, strawberries, string beans, and Jerusalem artichokes (apparently, they grow under beautiful tall sunflowers), mixed with colourful flowers and a few fruit trees. And a jasmin, for the heavenly scent. Right now, I only have a balcony but I am determined to make the most of it. Thank you for the giveaway!


This sounds a very promising book! I'm happy with my basic garden but would love unlimited funds to wall it in a bit and do some landscaping so that all my (still) potted box topiary could be planted up, with a nice shady bit for the (also still) potted hostas - please eliminate the slugs! - under the damson trees, and a tea-house in the corner and plenty of pretty colours that harmonise with the house: grey and blue-leafed plants with white, pink, purple and red flowers in among the green box edgings and knot garden... oh, and a bit of water would be nice to paddle in, too, when it's hot...


I'd like a natural pond that was always warm enough to swim in please.


May Sarton wrote in her journals so much about flowers and gardens it always appealed to me to have the same type of sanctuary..... even though the actual work of creating this escaped me! I would love this book for my sister. She has a lovely yard that she actually does create in.


We have plenty of space (a hectare of meadow, woodland and small lake - this is in rural France where land in is comparably cheap) but despite this area being great for wildife I yearn for an area of 'proper garden' as well. We have a few herbs in pots, but never having had much of a garden when we lived in the UK I lack inspiration and confidence. I'd like to create an area that would encourage other types of wildlife, as well as looking good and not out of place with the 'wilder' nature of the rest of the land. A tall order, I know, but maybe this book would get me started if I were lucky enough to win it.


I would love an area woodland garden with bulbs in spring and foxgloves in summer. I would walk through the woods to a swimming pond, then after my swim take the route past the cutting garden and gather a bunch of flowers. Thank you for offering this lovely looking book.


Oh that does sound like the kind of book that would inspire me.

My ideal garden is a small orchard. It would contain a couple of apple trees, a pear, a damson, a plum, a quince (already have that one) and a mulberry. The trees would be underplanted with bluebells, daffodils and other spring bulbs. The grass would be full of meadow flowers and left to grow long except for mown paths winding between the trees. My orchard would be bordered by a hedgerow of hawthorn, wild roses, blackthorn, elder and hazel. Foxgloves, meadowsweet, cow parsley and other wild flowers would grow along the hedge.


The perfect garden for me would have Gertrude Jekyll's boots waiting by the garden door, for that would mean that the garden would be an English romantic garden which smells as good as it looks; old-fashioned roses growing into trees and over walls, sweet peas rambling up twiggy supports, honeysuckles, fruit trees, and lavender and herbs catching the hem of your skirt as you pass by.

elaine rickett

My dream garden would be self-weeding and the grass would always stay at the perfect length. The flowers would bloom in perfect unison and the shrubs would never need pruning. It would be designed with meandering paths and little hideaway corners with strategically placed seats. It would contain beautiful statuary and tinkling water. There would be a small woodland that was full of wild flowers and an orchard with a hammock for lazy summer days. Impossible, yes, but a wonderful dream, nevertheless.


I Love Sweet Peas(!), morning glories, roses, peonies - a lot of old-fashioned flowers. My husband is the flower gardener - tulips, daffodils, pansies, petunias. He's tried, but roses and peonies won't grow out front (to be viewed from a large picture window) - because of a huge black walnut tree and whatever natural chemicals it exudes. He's had to move these out back where they can only be viewed if we walk all the way around the house.

Barbara MacLeod

I am quite happy with what I have but do you know what would give me a smile every morning? A wee bit of graffiti by Banksy on our garage door!


My fantasy garden begins with a new design by a local landscape designer who is sympathetic to my small city lot and modest, historic home. I wish for a design and five year plan on paper so we can do most of the work ourselves. The garden will include some subdued areas and some that are a riot of color. When I was very young, we had a neighbor who had a wonderful old fashioned cement fish pond in their garden. I've always wanted one too. More recently I've added a small tea house to my wish list. Of course my fantasy garden has unlimited space to accommodate all my nursery picks and requires only enough maintenance to be fun. It will be the location of solitary early morning strolls, family dining alfresco, and evening star gazing with my husband.

Grace in France

The garden of my dreams would be one like Virginia and Leonard Woolf's at Monk's House, Rodmell. However, I would be quite content with my own little patch, if only I knew where to start knocking it into shape. Something to give me impetus sounds just like what I need, so I'm crossing my fingers.

Ros Clarke

Oh, yes! My ideal garden wouldn't have any slugs or snails. Or scarlet lily beetle.


My dream garden is one that I can sit and look at and not see any weeds that need pulling or deadhaeds that need picking.

My dream garden is one that I can simply sit in and enjoy without all the hards work.

Ah, well dream on!


I love Bluebells. I mean I really love them. So if I could my garden would be covered in them. Plus lavender because I love the smell.


My ideal garden would have old-fashioned apples and damsons , lavender and herbs and a table where I could eat breakfast on sunny mornings . And a snail-height Keep Out sign .


Our climate doesn't leand itself to sweetpeas, except those fushia variety which grow wild in our ditches and bloom in May.
I own the book, A Bunch of Sweet Peas, by Henry Donald.
It is the story of a competition for growing sweet peas held in the British Isles in 1911. [probably I read about it on your blog?] I love the many colors of sweet peas! My own garden is more tomatoes and zinnias, (also colorful!)because of our hot drier climate.


I love flowers of all kinds, they cheer me up when i see them, so I would like a garden with flowers in all seasons (I am not organised enough to manage that at the moment), and all colours but especially blues, purples and pinks and of course splashes of yellow daffodils for spring. All the mention of swimming ponds reminds me I'd love one too, if it stayed nice and clear and was big enough for a good swim and never turned green...


like so many others I dream of a walled garden, enclosed, private, keepingin the heat and the scents of dreamy Piet Oudolf scale planting...


what a beautiful book. I like secluded spaces so my ideal garden would be a sunny walled (brick or stoned- i am not particular) garden with lots of scented plants. I have to make do with a sweet half-walled and high fenced yarden.


Lots of simple flowers - and ones which dont need much attention. Also fruit trees and a vegetable garden alongside! I've got the fruit and vegetable part but the flowers are not coming along so well.

Account Deleted

all colours but especially blues, purples and pinks and of course splashes of yellow daffodils for spring. All the mention of swimming ponds reminds me


A huge and spreading Cedar tree under, and in, which to sit. Please.

Margaret Powling

My ideal garden would be something along the lines of Coleton Fishacre ... something that would be refreshing during the day and romantic and scented at night, the rather untamed garden leading down to a gate on the cliff and down to the tidal swimming pool below ... where I could walk from the loggia after dinner (served by a butler, of course!) through a scented garden, either to the beach or to the more formal rill garden, filled with stocks, peonies, delphiniums and roses. The rill would end in a cascade which would tumble down to a wild garden with ponds, ferns, and the stream would then end in a waterfall at the edge of the cliff.


I would like more sun and deeper soil, as I had in the house across town before we moved to this roomier but shadier house. In that fantasy space, I'd grow rhubarb, peas, and tons and tons of garlic, as well as the flowers I love, all with bright (possibly clashing, even) colors. Barbara Kingsolver, In The Bean Trees, refers to a garden that looks like an eye test--that's my dream garden!

The Victorian Librarian

My current dream is to move to a tiny island and have various gardens. One will be all vegetables and fruit for food, there will also be an orchard, and some clifftop gardens of hardy flowers. When it comes to the latter, I always imagine Anne Shirley, or Blythe as she was by then, edging her flowerbeds with Captain Jim's quahog shells in the garden of the House of Dreams.


My dream garden is the one I had last , but had to leave because, of a job change. I still dream of it and yesterday reading "Old Man" by Edward Thomas, I was transported back again at his description of how the scent of Artemisia transported him back to his own youth.I would love again a garden burgeoning with the cottage garden flower of May and June: campanulas, poppies, old roses...Bliss.


Espalier peaches and apricots, and enough sun to make them ripen.
Looks like a lovely book, my sweet peas have been battered by hail as I unwisely tried to harden them off too soon. They have been brought in again for ITU nursing, they may yet survive to adulthood.

margaret 46

A walled garden and a gardener to guide me is my dream.


My perfect garden would always include a lemon or lime tree as it seems to me the height of luxury to be able to pick one for a gin and tonic to be enjoyed as the sun goes down on a perfect summer's day (and preferably a key lime tree to make a delicious (and authentic) key lime pie - a perfect summer's pudding).


I'd like a walled garden too please, with lots of places to sit and admire, or read, or dream. With Madonna lilies strong enough to survive the lily beetles (or even better - no lily beetles at all), and only decorative wall-dwelling snails that feed exclusively on weeds. I would like sunny places and shady places and a little dappled shade would be nice too. And of course roses and sweet peas and just about everything else in the summer and glorious colour in the autumn and snow drops and primroses in the spring. Other than that I'm not fussy...


a meadow of Fritillaria meleagris maybe?
or a Beth-Chatto-style gravel garden...
either way, something that stands up to the regular digging of Pearl the whippet ;-)

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Please note

  • Sidebar book cover thumbnail pictures are affiliate links to Amazon, and the storefront links to Blackwell's and The Book Depository are also affiliated; should you purchase a book directly through those links, I will receive a small commission. Older posts may also contain affiliate links to one of those bookshops. I am not paid to produce content and all opinions are my own.


The Great Tapestry of Scotland

  • 1914-1918 War
    Pictures from the stitchers' preview

A request

  • If you wish to use any original images or content from this site, please contact me.

Places to visit

The Book Depository

  • Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository

Art and Architecture

Knitting and other crafts

Cornflower Book Group: read