‘Building a Dream’ – The Planting
Ugly duckling no more! Despite having been planted just a few months and in some areas a few days, you can really get a sense of what the planting will look like over the next few years.
We have a wonderful gardener, Fiona, to nurture the garden with the help of the lovely Steve and Amy over the summer they have worked wonders keeping the weeds at bay, trimming hedges and keeping it all watered as the irrigation system goes in.
We have spent months working on the planting plan and organisation. We started it in September 2014 and finished it several months later. I think we’re into tens of thousands of plants and much thought has gone into it. Setting them out has been fun! Quite a military operation.
Each area has quite a different concept behind. We have the front garden which is in need of a grand entrance giving a hint of a beautiful garden hidden within. It now has a sweeping drive bordered with sculptural formal topiary and pretty shady planting.
The flower garden with its central glasshouse, plants of a similar height largely around 1m have been chosen. It’s a matrix planting with some hopefully lovely combinations such as Selenium wallichianum, Angelica gigas, Pennisetum x advena ‘Rubrum’ (not hardy so will be under glass in winter probably but we’re going to see), Allium nigrum and Allium atropurpureum and Sedum ‘Jose Aubergine’.
Then we have a dramatic fire garden with a dry stone seating area that will have a fire sculpture in the centre. Emanating outwards from the centre are swathes of fiery reds, oranges and yellows from plants such as Cornus sanguinea ‘Midwinter Fire’, Crocosmia varieties, Euphorbia griffithii ‘Fireglow’, Geum ‘Fire Opal’, Persicaria aplexicaulis ‘Firedance’ to name but a few.
The woodland is a romantic area filled with some of my favourite woodland plants, Melica uniflora f. albida, Tellima grandiflora, Lamprocapnos spectabilis ‘Alba’, Digitalis purpurea ‘Alba’, Astrantia major ‘Hadspen Blood’ and ferns such as Polystichum munitum.
The kitchen garden has a stylised geometric section. Umbrella pruned Osmanthus armatus will have painted white stems and are underplanted with a mass of Sesleria autumnalis and white roses, Rosa ‘Winchester Cathedral’.
The combination of grasses and roses is carried through to the sunken patio where we have Rosa ‘Twice in a Blue Moon’, Melica ciliata and Pennisetum alopecuroides ‘Hameln’. The lilac rose, extends the colour scheme the interior designer, Hilary, introduced in the stunning new kitchen living area.
Massive thank you to Fiona, Steve and Amy and the team of planters, co-ordinated by the wonderful Noemi, who have worked tirelessly, more often than not, in less than lovely weather over the last few months.