Our house in Indre, Val de Loire, part of the historical province of Berry
The Courtyard – Champ de la Grange
Enter through the gate into a grassy courtyard. Twice every summer the wild honeysuckle next to the gate blossoms and the colour & scent is idyllic. To the left of the gate is the new Herb Garden where scent of sage, thyme and lavender may greet you.
To your right, in the gravel along the wall of the high barn is a newly planted row of Russian Sage, Lavender (Hidcote and Augustofolia) and sprawling Cat Mint.
At the end of the high barn near the gate is a shady area, which is the coolest place to sit in the heat of summer. One day we will have a swing seat here.
The house faces our Gite which is part of the original barn. The house and Gite are opposite each other. Both are attached to barns. There is an old covered well in the Courtyard. In the summer Passion Flower scrambles over this well and up the wall.
The property is on the local map as Champ de la Grange (field of the barn). This barn must have served as a central barn for surrounding fields when the house was first built. This traditional barn has what may have been a crop drying area as an attic over the barn.
We call it Swallow Barn as in part of the Barn as the empty hangar next to the Gite is home to many swallows in the spring & early summer. They swoop and dive and we ought to close off the hangar and make a storage area – but we don’t want to disturb the swallows.
The old pigsty completes the courtyard giving shelter to the terrace. Now it stores the garden tools.