Well so far so good, Christmas only a couple of weeks away and not a frost to speak of, so that’s given us time to put the garden to rest for the winter. By that I mean protecting our tender succulent plants and lifting some plants to be stored under glass until springtime. Not all is standing still in the garden as there are some fantastic displays of early Camellias and winter flowering Mahonias, but by far the crown in the jewel is our stunning Dahlia imperialis ‘Alba’. This tender beauty grows to about 3m tall and is known as a tree Dahlia. It is a native to Mexico where it really has a more Mediterranean climate, yet it survives outdoors with us but often it gets its leaves and flower buds ‘wind and frost’ blasted before it gets the chance to flower. This year it has performed the best for many a year and is a real surprise for visitors this time of year. We have also been somewhat contemporary with our choice of Christmas tree in the Colonial restaurant by dressing a ‘Norfolk Island Pine’, it does the job!! Happy Chrismas and a bonne Annee.