day was devoted to a vist to The
Lost Gardens of Heligan. The gardens are on the estate of the
Tremayne Family, who had developed these fabulous gardens during
their 400 year residency. In 1914 they moved to other homes and
the estate was used for a hospital during the war. The entire crew
of gardeners, 22 in number, enlisted in the war and only 4 survived
it. the gardens fell into disuse and were unattended until 1990.
They were completely overgrown at this point, when they were discovered
by Tim Smit
who began the effort to restore them.
had a lecture at the hotel by a man named Colin, who has taken part
in the restoration work for many years. He was quite a good lecturer
and very informative. Then he went with us on the bus to lead our
tour. First we ate lunch at their cafeteria, which was excellent,
with most of the food produced locally.
we were off with Colin for an extensive tour of the gardens. Several
of the gardens were walled and they had been completely overgrown
to a height greater than the walls before restoration. In most cases
restoration required new plantings but fortunately they found documentation
to guide them. After a while we went on to a part ofthe gardens
called the Jungle that was in a semi-wild state.