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Landscape Magazine

Landscape Magazine April 2019

LandScape magazine is a breath of fresh air, capturing the very best of every season. Every two months, join us to: - Celebrate the joy of the garden - Learn simple seasonal recipes - Enjoy traditional British crafts - Wonder at the beauty of nature and the countryside The magazine is a haven from the pressures of modern living; a chance to slow down... and most importantly, a reminder of the good things in life. Take time to appreciate everything that nature creates and inspires.

United Kingdom
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7 Issues

In this issue

1 min.
dear reader...

APRIL IS A month of firsts. The first bluebells appear on the woodland floor; the first summer visiting birds arrive; the first truly warm days of spring envelop the countryside. Nature is bursting forth with verdant green. Previously naked branches are clothed with unblemished leaves; hills and valleys are swathed in a fertile blanket. Everything feels fresh, new and full of promise. With my senses stimulated, nature’s vigour inspires me to embrace the day with rekindled enthusiasm. During the winter, some tasks have been laid to rest, unnecessary as nature slumbered through the shorter days. But now there is grass to mow, seeds to sow and pruning to be done. With the sun on my back and without need for a jacket, there is simple pleasure to be taken from these humble…

5 min.
readers’ letters

Standing the test of time My parents were married in 1918, and one of Mum’s favourite presents that year was Mrs Beeton’s cookery book. Over the years, we have tried many bought and home-made pudding recipes, but have invariably gone back to Mrs B. The book is now battered and worn, with a plastic cover to keep the brown pages together. However, the puddings still taste lovely. Pat Westley, Norfolk Celebration of the sun I love the mixture of craft, nature and sewing that LandScape offers: I read every single page. With last year’s hot summer, I was able to pick a sunflower going to seed and make a heart table decoration, inspired by the ideas in the September 2018 issue. I am busy tidying up my sewing room in preparation for many more…

3 min.
our landscape

FIRST BUDS OF FLAVOUR There is a primal satisfaction that comes with foraging for wild edible greens in hedgerows, fields and woodland. In early spring, shoots begin to appear, and young, tender leaves are easier to identify. If selected carefully, they can add natural flavours to many dishes and are full of nutrients, often bred out of their cultivated counterparts. Common sorrel, Rumex acetosa, is easy to recognise by its broad, arrow-shaped leaves, with basal lobes pointing backwards. It has a sharp lemony taste and can be added to soup or eaten fresh in green or potato salads. The spring leaves of sage, thyme and rocket can also add aromatic flavouring to a dish or garnish, though care needs to be taken to avoid false identification. A regular walk can help…

9 min.
spring spectacle

SPRING HAS ARRIVED, and fingers of sunshine stretch into every corner of Ramster Gardens, illuminating the great smudges of pink, purple, scarlet, yellow and white as the garden’s nationally important rhododendron and azalea collections come into flower. At this time of year, from early April until late May, the 20-acre plot just outside the Surrey village of Chiddingfold is truly vernal as 300 varieties of rhododendron and more than 60 types of azalea burst into voluptuous bloom. These are accompanied by approximately 30 magnolias, a tribe of fluffy-headed Japanese maples and carpets of daffodils and bluebells underfoot. By early May, the gaudy riot of colour is at its height as the 40ft (12m) high ‘Cynthia’ rhododendrons, Ramster’s signature shrub, burst forth along the entrance drive and ripple through the garden…

1 min.
similar in appearance

Once classified in separate plant groups, azaleas and rhododendrons are now placed together in the same genus due to their similarities. Both gardeners and nurseries, however, still refer to them by their common names to distinguish between them. Although they have many characteristics in common, there are differences between the two shrubs. Whereas azaleas may be deciduous or evergreen, rhododendrons are usually evergreen and only sometimes deciduous. Azalea leaves tend to be thin and soft, whereas evergreen species of rhododendron have large, thick leathery leaves. The number of stamen also varies, with azaleas typically having five or six compared to 10 or more in rhododendrons. Evergreen azaleas generally produce one to three flowers at the end of their many small stems, and rhododendron flowers are often grouped in large clusters,…

1 min.
rhododendrons for small spaces

Today, the huge, blowsy hybrids of yesteryear have been largely replaced with hybrids stemming from Rhododendron yakushimanum. This compact shrub has been used to produce thousands of crosses in the last 20 years; plants that are better suited to smaller gardens, such as creamy ‘Babette’, clear pink ‘Birthday Girl’, coral-coloured ‘Dopey’ and scarlet ‘Fred Peste’. At Ramster Gardens, owner Miranda Gunn has created a plot showing how the latest dwarf varieties can fit into the tiniest flower bed or large container. Great rhododendrons for smaller spaces include the pale yellow ‘Wren’, hairy-leaved ‘Woolly Dane’, soft white ‘Tinkerbird’ and the clear pink ‘Winsome’. Small azaleas include hot pink ‘Arabesque’ and cherry red ‘Florida’. Miranda has suggested useful things for interplanting too, such as hellebores and beautiful blue lithodora.…