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China Girl blog 14th September 2016

It often seems to me that Cothay sits in a bubble, a haven amidst the browns and greens of Somerset. The house and garden govern all our lives and now, with the onset of autumn just around the corner, little changes.

Given to us some years ago by a visiting nurseryman is the rare small tree Heptacodium miconioides from central China, discovered in 1901 growing on cliffs in western Hupeh. Wilson did not introduce it for almost forty years; Mother thinks it is still quite rare. At this time of year it is covered in small star-shaped white blossom which is sweetly scented, it grows above the tear-shaped lake, planted sadly too near to another tree and a yew hedge. It is now about 5 metres high. Dearest Mother said she put it in this place as she had no idea it would grow so large. It is also extremely hardy to -35oC and is fast growing.

This week we have been hither and thither tidying, tidying & tidying, as well as collecting ripe seeds.

At the end of the day my tummy begins to rumble and as the shadows lengthen, Dearest and I make our way into the old house.