My feature on the garden of Lowther Castle, near Penrith in Cumbria, appears in the February issue of The English Garden, a special devoted to the meeting of ancient and modern. Shot on the 22nd July it was the parterre laid rug-like below the southern facade of the castle that was the star of the show at that time of year, with white wands of Veronicastrum virginicum 'Spring Dew', candyfloss pink Filipendula venusta 'Rubra' and dusky purple Actaea simplex 'James Compton' colourful counterpoints to the strong dark green of yew walls. Other striking areas of the garden include the entrance courtyard where sleek columns of hornbeam stand to attention, and the mysterious Sweet Scented Garden, a remnant of the Edwardian garden designed by Thomas Mawson. The word palimpsest could have been made to describe this place, meaning something that is reused or altered but still bears visible traces of its earlier form or forms. The C17th garden is still visible below the Edwardian; the Edwardian garden will still be visible beneath and between Dan Pearson's C21st century additions. Quite beautiful.