Sir Joseph Paxton has returned to the garden. To be accurate it is the rose named after him that has returned. Here he is (with his small green admirers!)
The rose was planted in the garden because Elizabeth Gaskell met Sir Joseph Paxton when she visited Chatsworth in 1857. A blog post from last year gives more details of her visit. http://elizabethgaskellhouse.co.uk/meeting-sir-joseph-paxton/
The rose has flowered earlier this year but maybe the garden is a fan of “Victoria” on the television in which one of Paxton’s great creations, the Crystal Palace, featured strongly.
In keeping with the practice of linking the planting with Elizabeth Gaskells writings we have a pelargonium, Crystal Palace Gem, waiting in the cold-frame to be planted out, and lobelia Crystal Palace waiting in the seeds trays. This is in spite of the fact, as I noted in last years blog, Elizabeth Gaskell was not too enthusiastic about the exhibition. http://elizabethgaskellhouse.co.uk/busy-bees-great-exhibition/
“Of course we did the Exhibition. I went 3 times, and should never care to go again; but then I’m not scientific nor mechanical”.
Mrs Gaskell. Letter of 1st September 1851
Chris Tucker, Garden volunteer