On the weekend we went out and found Country Farm Perennials, just out of Nayook.  A lovely garden (with a nursery) ...and oh my they have a catalogue...but I've lost my train of thought (that's what gardens does to a girl).

I wanted to talk about inspirations.

This garden was gorgeous.

 Around every corner there was something else to oooh and ahhh over...

 There was a lot of 'We really need one of those don't we?' comments.

There was a lot of 'wow, look at that'.

What really intrigued me was that a lot of plants we have at home.

 Yes we have the columbines and the foxgloves, the azaleas, the mollis, the rhododrendrons....but they have put their plants together in such inspirational ways.

Ways that I had not thought of. That should have clashed or should have jarred but didn't.

 Some things, such as the arbour above and the wonderful bird bath at the end of the vista---totally out of our league. But we noticed the repetition of urns planted the same pavers were removed and planted with ground covers.

It was the small details I noted, that I hope to incorporate into my own garden. It won't look anything like this garden for so many reasons.

We don't have as much acreage, our land has a definite slope to it...we don't face the same direction...we don't have the open paddocks all around---don't have the same secluded mini climates available etc etc.

But we came away with ideas and felt excited about the opportunities. To dare try new things. New plant combinations (the circle of heucheras and hostas under the trees was sublime), even try a plant that we thought before would not work here.

You can only try.

And that is why writers MUST READ.  To get ideas, to be think 'could I try this?"

It doesn't mean we copy, by no means....but it helps push us beyond what we thought we could do.

And really if you do read, it stops you from spending a year writing about this orphaned boy, treated terribly and forced to live under the stairs, when he discovers he has this magical talent...he's a boy wizard. 

I'm sorry, but it has been done. So has a girl falling in love with a vampire (several versions) are chosen from various factors to fight to the wake up to discover you are in a small glade trapped within a maze...etc etc.

The more you read, the more you know what works, what so doesn't---it helps you to find your own voice. What genre you like to write, what style...and then it often gives you the nudge to try something different. 

The more we read, the more we learn.

The more I go to visit gardens, the more inspired I am for my own plot.

So here's to more reading and more gardens.

Ps- if you write young adult fiction and want to get an agent to have a look at it- here's a prize to go for 


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