Virtually a White Christmas Sleigh Ride Home 2017 – 2018

A view of the River Rhiw 'Felindre' nr Berriew. Taken by Dafydd,

It’s hard to believe that I have only been stateside for a a little over a year. So much has happened and there really is never a dull moment.

Today I am nearing the end of my first year in service for the No1 Urban Landscaping company in the City! We celebrate 10 years in service for private residents in centre city locations. Window boxes, courtyard to rooftop gardens urban landscaping on the streets and high rise condos of Rittenhouse square from Fairmount to Fishtown, South street  read more…. or read on..

A year ago I wrote: I miss home, the rolling hills of Mid Wales that’s home, and always will be, there’s no doubt in my mind where ever I choose to live! I deal with homesickness by writing and kind of transporting myself home as I do, don’t worry I know my writing style is not all that slick but I’m trying out a new writing technique so let’s see how that goes.

Photo Credits: The Featured photo – A view of the River Rhiw ‘Felindre’ nr Berriew. Taken by Dafydd,

Photo Credits: Down the Lane to Berriew a photo taken by Pammy of Cefn Faenor, Berriew.

A million miles from home right now (artistic license I think it’s like 3,500 miles, ten weeks in and I’m feeling a slight unease it’s the City and it’s oppressive feeling bearing down on me. I’m a country boy at heart, who just happened to want to see the world, far beyond the rolling hills of mid-Wales, setting out on many adventures but always heading to the hills of home to rest and de-stress.

I’m yet to discover my next career route although I’m in no hurry, have faith, I remind myself a to keep a keen eye on the industry, the movers and shakers and take this time to adjust to the City its ways and the madness.

I’m certain things will calm down Robert’s Mother took a tumble and is bedridden for the un-foreseeable, bless her cotton socks, she’s having a rest whether she likes or not! Thanks to three broken ribs. So run ragged Robert battling his Parkinson’s with good and bad days and I trying my best to blend in, Bear in mind that Robert’s Mom can run circles around anyone, even lying down! So it’s been a stress full week and I thought since I often write to learn perhaps here’s chance to express my voice, my heart, my home virtual way home!

It’s not that I have never been away from home all my life, I grew up in Welshpool, fumbled my way through high school, head down trying to avoid trouble and everything! Since my Mum moved to Berriew our lives began to change, I had already left home having completed an apprenticeship with the National Trust under Jimmy Hancock of Berriew and of-course Powis Castle the finest example of terraced gardens that I have seen anywhere.

I’m told my Grandfather and Grandmother both worked at the Castle, my grandad in the gardens my nan a domestic in the Castle, I always thought it surreal that I should find myself there almost by default. I travelled as soon as I could afford, I worked in Poland, Corfu, France, Spain and very shortly the USA. That said where ever I am headed, from wherever I have been, there’s that one special place on my whole journey that I’m not happy until I’ve seen! Have you guessed it? It is, of course, the aforementioned picturesque, black and white village of Berriew on the river Rhiew, and the winding country lanes that always welcome me home.

That’s why this morning’s inbox a series of snow-covered pictures from the one place I call home jas been a silver lining over the last few difficult days. It has been my pleasure to socially share “My Virtual Sleigh Ride home for Christmas” and believe me I have driven these lanes many a time in snow over the years.

The following picture that looks like you could sled down the lane, lovingly reminding me that life is an adventure and I’m simply away from home right home, virtually but I’m just around the bend.

Photo Credits: A series of snow covered photographs by Claire Varley, of Berriew.

I know you love this photo but to see the whole collection your going to have to join our Facebook page, where village vistors and residents are showing how much they Love Berriew by sharing there favorite pictures here >>

Grow with me on


Stephen Pryce-Lea

Head Gardener and International Horticultural Consulatant




“It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion grow together, when you find it in a Garden it’s like finding Paradise“

iGrowHort – A Head Gardener’s Horticultural Journey of love, life and learning.



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About Head Gardener 291 Articles
Award winning, 40 something year old professional plantsman and horticulturalist with National Trust, private parks and estate management background. My vast plant knowledge and hands on techinical experience, afforded me the opportunity to work in various horticultural landscapes, in the UK, USA & Eastern Europe. Having worked in both garden retail & the design service industry gave me the practical diversity and managerial skill set, required for running a large prestigious gardens and stately homes. I strongly believe knowledge is to be shared and have worked closely with people and staff of all ages and abilities keen to develop their passion for gardening, including groups of children, special needs and adults. I have hosted guided walks, talks and tours for those keen to learn about cultivated and wild plants, garden development, history and design. As an member of the NNCPG and National Trust, I am actively involved in the preservation of several important plant collections both in public and private gardens throughout the UK. “It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion grow together, in a garden it’s paradise” Follow @IGrowHort on GardenTags. Stephen is passionate about gardening as Head Gardener with a team of ten staff he manages a prestigious Cheshire country estate of 55 acres, inc wild flower meadows, woodland, organic kitchen and formal gardens. Follow Stephen today”


  1. What a beautiful winter post. We love when it really snows. NYC is beautiful when the parks are filled with snow.

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