Powis Castle Gardens are beautiful. The formal gardens are so sculptured, and colourful. Wonderful views of the castle, and topiary always neat. But it’s the wilderness I love. It’s quieter there, as many people don’t want to walk along rough tracks that could be muddy, or don’t see the appeal of the trees. But that’s WHY I like it. The rhododendron bushes surround you, the trees tower over you. Squirrels scurry across the path, pheasants rustle through the undergrowth, and the little birds sing from the branches. I feel safe there. Safe to sit and think. To take photos. To enjoy nature. I’ve been visiting Powis Castle since I was about 10 years old, and during the nicer weather would always head to the gardens. I would sit on the Giant’s foot. I would read the pets’ gravestones. I would try and find the plunge pool, and I would peer into the ice house. As a small child the trees seemed huge. It was a wonderland, where I could get lost, but know my way round. I knew all the little paths and would zigzag back and forth for hours. As I got older, my enjoyment changed. I appreciated the flowers more. I learnt to be quiet so that the animals weren’t so scared. I found the best benches, the interesting gnarled branches, the prettiest panoramas. Now I see the changing landscape. How the foliage changes from month to month. I can always find something new to photograph. And I still feel at home there. It’s my second garden. There will always be room in my heart for the Wilderness.
‘I don’t like formal gardens. I like wild nature. It’s just the wilderness instinct in me, I guess.’ ~ Walt Disney