The vast stretch of sand in St Ives Harbour
We visited St Ives at last this week and found summer seemed to linger on within the bustling streets and thronged harbour even though it was late in October.
The bustling tourist destination of St Ives is so different from the quiet, laid back, world of Mounts Bay and so we eased ourselves gently into the visit by taking the Train from Lelant Saltings. The train runs from here about every thirty minutes so there is never long to wait and the ten minute journey has spectacular views
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We made a long planned visit to St Michael’s Mounts this week, finally taking advantage of the gentler pace of life that arrives with autumn in Cornwall. Autumn is such a special time of year – the days are still warm and those special spots are far less crowded – just right for a visit in fact!
St Michael’s Mount has an ancient Cornish name – “Karrek Loos yn Koos” referring back to a time before the swampy forest in what is now Mounts Bay was submerged under the seas. The journey to the St Michael’s Mount today encompasses the long history beginning with the pagan legends of giants, with a causeway at low tide that follows a pilgrim’s path towards a monastic island where the archangel St Michael’ was said to have appeared to the fishermen.
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St Michael’s Mount from the coastal footpath around Mounts bay
Autumn days brings those glorious days of bright sunshine and cool clear air, days of racing waves trailing plumes of vapour and the thoughts of cosy warm suppers tucked beside the ancient inglenook of a pub high on the moors.
The country lanes are filled with tawny leaves drifting underfoot, the high warm banks dressed in russet bracken now with rich red berries spangling the hedgerows occasionally I meet the occasional walkers clasping an Ordnance Survey map in lanes softly enveloped by autumn at its best.
The changing pace of life of the autumn has finally given us a chance to purge the debris generated by “The Beast from the East with bonfires sending lazy plumes of smoke up into the air.
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The timeless view to the Mount from our garden
The clock of the seasons is ever turning, bringing the mists of autumn to gently shroud the garden and with it the morning dew to spangle the lawns. With the change of the seasons the scent of the sea has come back to us at Ednovean, along with the rhythmic music of the waves to our ears.
August and September have brought the familiar markers of the gardening year in the faithful cycle of the seasons, as summer slips away again to meet the next landmark of our gardening days the autumn equinox.
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The harbour at Lamorna – notice the winter storm damage that sent granite blocks tumbling to the sands
“Away down to Lamorna” is chorus of a famous Cornish song and I had forgotten just how beautiful Lamorna Valley was, until we drove down through the valley to the harbour again this week.
The tinge of autumn was yet to touch the luscious green of the all enveloping trees in this sheltered valley and summer lingered on for a perfect late autumn day.
We had planned a lunch at the Lamorna Wink before a visit to Chygurno Gardens on one of its last open days before the winter. As the season slips from summer to autumn we’ve already revisited several gardens this year – gardens that we first visited when planning our own gardens and we previously visited the terraced Gardens of Chygurno back in about 2000 just as the first Tree Ferns were planted.
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The trees were already showing a trace of gold on their leaves, as we took the King Harry Ferry across the River Fal to the Roseland Peninsula, to visit the Lamorran House Gardens again.
Our last visit to Lamorran’s subtropical, Italianate garden must have been nearly twenty years ago and we were looking forward to retracing our steps through the palms as the far bank slipped away behind us and the faint vibration of the clanking ferry mechanism spread up through the deck to our feet.
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St Michael’s Mount from the coastal footpath near Perranuthnoe
Should we say it is autumn yet I wonder? Well this week summer blew Cornwall a parting kiss and delivered blues skies, warm seas and gorgeous sunshine to the days, as we drift between the meteorological* autumn and the autumn equinox* in the hinterland known as late summer.
These balmy late summer days are just perfect to walk along the tranquil coastal footpaths and soak up the sun on the empty beaches, so join me in this week’s blog to explore a secluded cove in the shadow of St Michael’s Mount and watch dusk fall over a fish supper in Marazion, as summer blows a parting kiss.
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The magnificent Gunnera lake is everything you would expect a lake to be, cool and elegantly stylish
Bonython Gardens with its 18th century walled gardens, tranquil lakes and dramatic sweeps of parkland is almost a hidden gem amongst the Great Gardens of Cornwall.
With its laid back approach, Bonython is definitely a must for garden visitors seeking to step off the “Tourist Trail” and move into another world of old fashioned hospitality in a deeply personal garden.
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Exotic planting settles seamlessly into the timeless garden
We visited Trengwainton gardens this August and found a garden for all season, with a rich depth of planting evolving within the old estate walls.
I’ve always thought of Trengwainton as a spring garden, with a walled kitchen garden within, so we were pleasantly surprised to find the range of thoughtful sub tropical planting within its immaculate environs, rising to a terrace with fabulous views all the way from Penzance to The Lizard.
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Perranuthnoe’s sandy beach flanked by smaller coves
The sea has never seemed bluer than this month as the heat wave changed our lives to a Mediterranean rhythm, as day after day of endless sunshine spread before us. We abandoned work in the afternoons to settle at the seas edge below the red baked clay cliffs of one the little coves that flank the sand of around Perranuthnoe Beach. The tranquil rhythm of the waves slipping idly on to the beach and slight breeze from the sea has been blissful this month in Cornwall with the delicious promise of a swim in the evenings in the mirror calm waters.
Continue reading “Cooling Sea breezes in the heat wave” »