Friday, June 6

This 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.

We 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.

Then 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.

 

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