IFORD MANOR - THE GARDEN OF PETO
This tranquil garden was the home of architect and designer Harold Peto from 1899-1933. He became famous by creating houses and gardens for wealthy Americans who wanted to take residence on the Côte d'Azur.
He was highly inspired by Italian gardens and collected plenty of antique fragments.
When he found Iford Manor, he could afford to buy the property and create a terraced garden where all his collected treasures could be integrated into the hillside.
Peto's garden is a fine example of architectural genius. Its atmosphere, the clever way of using the hillside gives visitors fantastic views and one is almost always overlooking the property. I wonder how long his daily "G.I.T." (Garden Inspection Tour) would have taken him. ;-)
The perfectly blue sky let us believe to be in Italy.
When we had decided to visit Iford, we really did not know what to expect. Gardens in Autumn can be sometimes disappointing.
But this one is worthwhile visiting in Autumn.
Peto was of the opinion that, for the highest development of beauty, a garden must be a combination of architecture and plants. In his manuscript "The Boke of Iford", he wrote that "Old buildings or fragments of masonry carry one's mind back to the past in a way that a garden of flowers only cannot do. Gardens that are too stony are equally unsatisfactory; it is the combination of the two, in just proportion, which is the most satisfying."
Iford Manor has a cloister. The leaflet says: 'A haunt of ancient peace'
Those words are wonderfully chosen!
It must be a perfect background for the sound in here.
I imagined how it must feel in winter. Standing in the cloister, seeing your breath in the cold air and watching snowflakes falling silently in the atrium.
A bit higher up is the Japanese garden. Entirely hidden below the huge trees. All is damp, moist and mysterious.
There is always a marvellous view over those Wiltshire hills.
I will keep this garden in my private "treasure book". It is worthwhile to visit and it also is an enchanting place.
On the way back through Wiltshire to 'Pompei', we had troubles to find something to eat. We finally managed to find an open pub in Hampshire and I had - eventually - Fish & Chips :-)))
Next day we explored around the river Test.