We had a fine time and I don't suppose I spoke more than about five words of English until I got back to Prague. However, the focus of this post will be the garden!
I always had a general impression that the house was extremely interesting and that there was a nice garden as well, but it was perhaps only on my last visit that I began to grasp what a remarkable garden it really is. This time there was no missing it, as nearly everything was in bloom or about to be. There were massive quantities of rhododendron and azalea blossoms, as well as some lilies and roses.
There are also numerous other kinds of flower, some of which I recognized or had even grown myself (well, for that matter I've grown azaleas and rhododendrons, but not with such stunning success). Many of the flowers were of the small ground-cover or rock-garden sort and didn't quite make their way into the photos.
Another notable feature of the garden is its collection of diverse evergreens from all over the world. There were tall thin ones, conical ones, round ones, and creeping and weeping ones. If I remember correctly, there were pines, spruces, firs, cedars, and junipers. The only one whose precise identity I got was the Ponderosa pine, although if I had taken notes I could have gotten the Latin names of most of them (not that this would have been of any immediate use to me).
There was also a Japanese maple, visible to the right. I'm not sure what the red-leaved tree to the left is anymore. Unfortunately I had taken quite a few photos on our afternoon hike and my camera batteries gave out before I could satisfactorily deal with the second side of the house. There are, thus, no photos of the new rock garden at the back (with lavender and other fragrant herbs), the vegetable garden (not very photogenic at the moment), the blueberry bushes and raspberry-like items (whether they were blackberries, boysenberries, or some other thing I don't know), the roses, columbines, tulips, and various other wonders such as a tree that produces twisty leaves.
I wish I had a garden like this, but although I have done a certain amount of gardening, especially as regards putting in bulbs and rare old roses, the fact that I haven't spent thirty-plus years in one spot has been something of a hindrance.
Of course, my skill level is also relatively low despite having worked on various garden books which taught me a lot about aphids, mites, and miscellaneous lawn fungi.