THE SUMMER SOCIAL
16th AUGUST 2015
NORFOLK PLANT HERITAGE
Pictures by David King
Sometimes the stars align with the planets (or some such) and everything turns out right. Saturday August 15 was one such evening over at East Ruston Old Vicarage for our summer social. I only arrived 10 minutes after the starting gate, but already there was the warm sound of many voices mingling as we approached the entrance.
After a chance to speak to friends and acquaintances, linger over the many beautiful plants for sale, drink a welcome glass of Pimms and snaffle a canapé or two, we set off to explore the gardens. One of the delights of East Ruston is that one never knows what's around the corner, or indeed, which corner one should choose. I felt that there might be a garden just behind a hedge that I would miss if I went one way and not the other. There are no signs to guide the visitor, which I think is good, as then serendipity has to play a part in the route. Checking their website I see that I did manage to miss one or two areas, the wildlife pond being one of them, providing an excuse for another visit.
The gardens nearest the house are a wonderful mix of high, formal hedging and a profusion of colourful, informal plantings including swathes of phlox, cosmos, fuschia, verbena and agapanthus. Out in the further reaches, the birches were stunningly, gleamingly white, causing us to wonder who had the job of polishing the bark. Here, where the gardens are larger, we were completely alone. Returning to the plant sale area we rounded off the evening with some lovely desserts, and and gave our thanks to the organisers for a memorable evening.