What do you look for when visiting other people’s gardens?
Some gardens we have to accept for what they are but are just not relevant to us – acres of ornamental trees or masses of large rhododendrons are never going to fit into our postage stamp of a garden on alkaline soil. But others are more relevant in parts or in total.
Being a plantaholic, I am always on the look-out for new plants. An exotic bloom, an interesting leaf, a dwarf form. Or maybe a mix of colours or using plants in a way that is fresh. For example, the poppy ‘Patti’s Plum’ has a smoky pink colour I have always found difficult to place. Then I saw it in a garden in Surrey, surrounded by shrubs with rich green or dark purple foliage and set off by only white flowers – perfect.
Yesterday I visited nine gardens here in Bracknell open to raise money for a local hospice. Some were disappointing, some were mediocre but there were a couple well worth the visit. The first was full of bedding plants – not garish but all mixed into full borders. Not my cup of tea but all done to perfection and may be up to Yellow Book standard. The second was beautifully planted on a difficult sloping site with dry, sandy soil. Everything could cope with the conditions and was looking healthy despite little rain recently. A particularly dry and shaded border was filling out nicely with various ivies and vincas while sedums in pots revelled in full sun by the front door. Right plant, right place.
Finally there are others I visit that where nothing excites or inspires me and I come away feeling disappointed or cheated. But what was it that irritated me about them? There is always something to learn from other people’s gardens.
- 29 Jun, 2008
- 0 likes
Previous post: Hidden Garden
Next post: Colour Theory