Throughout the site there are many examples of good landscape, excellent tree planting, bold sweeps of grass, strong hedges and some striking water features. Small pocket gardens appear in various locations such as the wonderful cactus garden with its splendid view out over Los Angeles.
However for me the highlight was the Central Garden, which I had loved on my last visit. The centre of the circular garden is a huge pool containing a maze of azaleas which seem to float on the water. On my last visit these were just green and created a strong and pleasing patter. On this occasion, they were in flower - a sight to rival almost any azalea garden!
|Our last visit with the azaleas out of bloom|
Surrounding the pool there is a path lined with borders packed with shrubs, herbaceous, annuals, bedding, climber and bulbs all planted in meticulously co-ordinated groups. It reminded me of the level of planting at places in the UK such as Sissinghurst Castle and Hidcote Manor. But the planting here is so spectacular that I'll reserve that for the next episode - sorry to keep you all waiting!