I inherited this garden 16 years ago (and if I’d known then we’d still be here after all this time I’m sure I would have done many things very differently). I spent the first few years as a novice gardener desperately trying to keep alive all the plants held dear by the lovely old lady before us. It felt such a huge responsibility!
One shrub that I don’t remember being here when we arrived and one I certainly haven’t planted myself is a Kolwitzia amabilis (or Beauty Bush). It has really come into its own in the past few years and has such a wonderful abundance of blooms.
It grows very tall (probably because I should have pruned it more regularly) which is great because even though it is far up in the garden I can still see it from the house, peaking over the top of the hydrangea hedge (at the centre of the top picture).
The individual blooms have intricate markings.