First published in Blogs St Albans & Harpenden Review: Photograph of the Author by

Last week I paid my annual visit to the Gardens of the Rose at Chiswell Green. Having experienced heavy rain and some windy weather I wondered how the plants had held up – I needn’t have worried – they looked wonderful.

For so many of us, gardeners or not, to dream of summer and romance is to dream of roses and the spectacular displays are a tribute to our on-going love affair with these romantic flowers. If you only have time to visit one garden this summer make it the Rose Garden and make soon – they close for the season in early August. Not surprisingly roses are the star performers and with the summer sunshine they are at their peak, the colours and perfume just wonderful. There is no pressure, no need to hurry, just wander through beds and enjoy displays of roses of every colour and size. Stroll through the pergolas planted with climbing roses and try to visualise them in your own garden. Their parking problems seem to have been sorted out. Just follow the signs for Butterfly World, drive past their entrance and at the far end of the car park there are places allocated to visitors of the Gardens of the Rose. This makes so much more sense and if you have time why not pop into Butterfly World and see how they are getting on. After enjoying the gardens don’t forget to visit the tea-room, I can particularly recommend the fresh scone filled with strawberries and cream – delicious. The plant sales area has been expanded and there are some good deals on roses to take home with you. For further details check out their web-site

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