South Shoebury Hall in April

On entering the front garden, the first thing you see are tulips growing amongst daffodils and imperial fritillaries which stand tall above a froth of forget-me-nots and comfrey — they both self-seed all over the place. Overhanging the beds are a pink magnolia, an old pear and gnarled apple trees which in spring come alive with pink or white blossom. The front garden has just evolved around the old trees and has a symmetry that matches the Georgian house facade. A simple paved path leads through the beds to the side of the house, passing by a dense shrubbery planted with evergreen flowering shrubs. There are pink camellias, azaleas, Viburnum tinus,Choisya ternata, Skimmia confusaand Daphne bhuloa, which has a wonderful scent in spring.

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