Gardening & Wildlife visit to
The Cottage, Cwmpennar, Mountain Ash
Tuesday 3rd June 2014

Another delightful visit, to The Cottage, Cwmpennar near Mountain Ash - 28 of us visited this garden, set on the mountain side just outside Mountain Ash. So steep that the coach could not get up to the garden - but Helen and Hugh Jones looked after us very well. Mr. Jones met the coach and transported those less able to walk up the steep slope by car making several journeys - both on our arrival and when we left - which was most kind.

This garden is listed in the National Garden Scheme and all the monies raised are donated to charity.

The garden is described in the NGS booklet as 4 acres and 35 years of amateur muddling - it did not look like muddle to us. A very informal garden set around what was formerly the home of a coal mine manager - the house having been in the Jones family for several generations and had been added on to. It had small balconies overlooking the valley. The house itself was covered in various climbers and was very pretty.

On our arrival Helen provided teas and coffees and a choice of delicious homemade cakes - all made by her on her aga. They were gorgeous. Hugh was proud to show us round his gardens - he is outdoors, she indoors. He was so proud of his handiwork. The garden was full of unusual plants and shrubs. Lots of Cornus, most of which were in flower. It is an enchanting garden and included a bluebell wood, rhododendrons and camellias shrubberies, herbaceous borders, a rose garden, small arboretum and has been featured in "My Garden" pages of the South Wales Echo, and has also been shown on TV.

There were plants for sale at a very good price.

We were sorry to leave this beautiful garden - but followed our visit to Mountain Ash with lunch at the Caerphilly Garden Centre - which was well stocked - we all found something to buy.

Thanks to Mr. & Mrs. Hugh Jones for their hospitality and to our driver Stuart for getting us all home safely.

Thanks also to Mary Purnell for organising the trip.

Note : Sadly we will be losing Mary as she is retiring as Convenor for the Gardening & Wildlife Group - thanks for her efforts over the years - she will be sorely missed but will continue to come along to our meetings.

Isabelle Paradice

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