There was much more than the topiaries to see in the Levens Hall gardens, though things were a bit soggy from the big rain. There were leafy tunnels,
ponds with fountains,
and propped up trees to stand under.
One of the things I was most excited to see was a Ha-Ha. No, I’m not laughing. This is a landscape design element I’d come across when I was researching the subject for some of my Naked books. I couldn’t quite grasp the concept, so it was great to actually see it in “action.” I had Mr. M take a picture of the sign that explains it all.
I hope you can read that if you click on it to enlarge it. Basically, it’s a way to extend the view yet keep farm animals out of the garden without a fence. According to the sign, this is the earliest example of a Ha-Ha. Here’s what it looks like.
The Ha-Ha is where you can see the line between two slightly different shades of green. If you stood at that edge and looked down, you’d see a ditch with water in it. I was tempted to try jumping down and over it to take the picture from the tree side, but was afraid that would end badly, with me wet or with a twisted ankle. I did take the picture looking down, but with no perspective, the photo really didn’t work.
After “playing” in the gardens for quite a while, we were finally ready to make our way to the house.