30 June 2013

Kew Gardens Early (June 2013)

Kew Gardens have decided that some of their members would like to be in the gardens early in the morning and have opened at 8:30 on some days instead of at the customary 9:30.

I often go there at 9:30, or soon after, on a Sunday morning so I am clearly one of the members that Kew has in mind in opening even earlier. I agreed with them and gave it a go.

My first attempt was a complete failure and instead of getting up at 8:00 I finally stirred at 10;00 so missed both the early start and my normal start. That visit was aborted but I tried again the following Sunday and this time I got there just as it opened.

From Victoria Gate I decided to walk all the way round the outer boundary of the gardens in a clockwise direction. It took me less time than I expected, because it was shorter than I expected. The perimeter is only 5km or so and that meant a walk of under an hour before I was back at Victoria Gate.

Having done the walk for the sake of doing a walk I then went back around the north-east corner at a more leisurely pace to take in some of the sights, such as the Rose Pergola.

I am not a great fan of the Princess of Wales Conservatory though there is nothing wrong with this view of it from the north-west corner where a subtle water feature mirrors the angles of the glass.

Summer means flowers and after a few grey trips to Kew it was wonderful to see so many flowers in bloom. Possibly the best garden to see them is in the Duke's Garden that keeps itself hidden on the north side behind a high brick wall.

This is also from the Duke's Garden and is part of the border that curves around the lawn. It is the architecture of the picture that I like with the exotic providing jagged dark green shapes that compliment but do not match the leaves in the foreground and in the centred curved white flowers contrast nicely with both.

Heading back to Victoria Gate for the third time that early morning meant passing the Aquatic Garden again and it is such a lovely spot that I took some more photos of it.

I am not yet completely convinced that getting up at 8am on a Sunday is a good idea but if I am going to be up at that time then Kew Gardens is a great place to be.

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