The Tea Garden is a fantastic place to sit, relax and enjoy a drink and a bite to eat. It is also where you can begin to explore the botanical richess of Natural Surroundings. As well as a general profusion of trees, shribs and flowers, there are several small themed gardens.
A half barrel that has been planted with a selection of grassland plants, all of which grow in the wild in southern England. The include Cowslip, Meadow Buttercup, Selfheal, Yellow Rattle and Sweet Vernal Grass. Perhaps the most spectcular plants are, however, the Common Spotted Orchids. These have spread and flower profusely, so much so that they have now seeded themselves into the adjacent bank, and we will now also be managing this as a meadow.
Romanian ‘Sock’ Meadow
In 2017 we visited the meadows of southern Transylvania in Romania (the Viscri district). They represent some of Europe’s most intact traditional grasslands. The low-intensity management and mixed farming has allowed huge areas of the countryside to be filled with wild flowers. It was an amazing eye-opener!
Returning from our walks each day, we found our shoes and socks covered in seeds, picked up in the meadows. Back home in Norfolk we sowed them and the flowers that grew from the debris in our socks now have a permanent home in a half barrel next to the Chalet.