My Tuscan garden

Good old Cicero! An Italian friend made me a bookmark with flowers from her garden and used his words: “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” I would add family and friends to that, but it’ll do.


We’ve been semi-taming our garden here in Tuscany for about eight years now. I say semi, because neither of us like a “parks and gardens” type design. Our plants have mostly been begged, borrowed or stolen (the latter in the form of seeds). My clever husband has made containers from recycled floorboards or lengths of surplus wood; we’ve purloined baskets and pots from skips or bins, or nature, in the form of hollowed-out tree trunks. Our challenge is the very cold winters (it can descend to -15 degrees) and quite hot summers (sometimes 40 degrees). So, my philosophy is to go with nature and plant what we see growing around us. Thus, I have mixed wild flowers with the more typical garden species and, in many cases, I prefer the wild. Field scabious is one of my favourites and I love the way it mingles and towers amongst my other plants, like a purple mist. We also have to contend with wild boar, who love digging up the roots of orchids that appear in our wild meadow. Porcupines love bulbs, so my heart is in my mouth about my lilies. But… these animals lived here before me and, hopefully, will live here after I’m gone.

We are at the beginning of the summer season, so there isn’t a huge amount of colour quite yet. But I have sneaked in a couple of snaps from last year in June. When I’m not writing or doing house stuff, I’m pottering outside and trying to dream up more planting schemes. I hope you enjoy my garden tableau. If you like, I will update you on progress through the summer months.


About Angela Petch

Bit of a story dreamer, written two novels - a third in progress. I love my little family and in no particular order afterwards: Italian culture, food, wine, walking everywhere I can and especially in the Apennines, East Africa, tennis when I can, reading, reading and more reading. So much to discover still before I die.
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6 Responses to My Tuscan garden

  1. I love the wild look and have learnt the hard way to plant what grows nearby. Enjoy your gardening. Books and flowers – what could be better.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Angela Petch says:

      Yes, I’ve discovered over the years I can’t grow fuchsia successfully – that is just one example. Hence, the most sensible (and fun) way is to replicate what does grow. Also. cuttings from friend’s plants remind me of those people. I have a beautiful rose – a successful cutting from a best friend who passed away. But she’s still in my garden.


  2. Beautiful vista to potter around in! Love the sun! Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Angela Petch says:

    Those parks arrangements of one lobelia, one geranium, etc make me feel sorry for the flowers…


  4. jessiecahalin says:

    This is exactly the sort of design we love too. It’s best to work with nature!

    Liked by 1 person

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