Tag Archives: garden design

Looking at Garden Planting Design Mistakes

As a keen gardener I am always making mistakes and learning from them, but invariably gardening books only tell us the correct way to do things and only show perfectly composed photographs of gardens to which we must aspire. Looking at … Continue reading

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Gardening with Shrubs

Books For Christmas 2014 There are not many books around that will actually teach you to use shrubs effectively in your garden. Too many shrub books are written by experts and focus on the plants at the expense of design; … Continue reading

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Autumnal Textures over Perennial Colour

My trial gardens in Amsterdam have teetered on the edge of chaos this year as a result of moving house. Weeds are under control and wayward growth ruthlessly chopped down, but I long for a clean sweep and the fresh growing … Continue reading

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Grasses – the current state of play

The introduction of ornamental grasses into planting plans was one of the most significant changes to occur within garden design in the past twenty years. Through their inclusion amidst an evolving planting pallet of perennials, contemporary gardens took on a … Continue reading

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Chelsea Show Gardens – teach us nothing

I have just finished watching the BBC’s daily reports on the Chelsea Flower Show 2014 and I must say that the new presenter, Monty Don, has significantly improved the standard of debate and analysis of the various plants and gardens … Continue reading

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Combining Perennial Meadows and Shrub Feature Borders

I have been telling everyone about Pachyphragma macrophyllum over many years, but still it is a little known ground cover perennial. Shrub feature borders combine special shrubs with other plants to create bold units of planting that play a role … Continue reading

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Shrubs in Perennial Meadows

A shrub feature border consists of a selection of characterful woody plants presented within a mixed perennial meadow planting. The concept has arisen from a need to use shrubs with more effect in planting designs. In the same way that … Continue reading

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Gardening is a Process not a Production

Blogging like gardening is a process that takes place over time. At its best ideas and results are explored and explained, but there will need to be modulation. Without troughs and dips in level of activity the possibility of highlights … Continue reading

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New English Perennial Borders

During my recent short trip to England where I was specifically studying shrubs – see earlier post – I took a look at two “new” (at least to me) large-scale, public, perennial planting schemes. One scheme was clearly designed to impress, … Continue reading

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Berberis – A Prickly Subject

As part of my current research into the use of shrubs in planting design I have recently spent a few days in England visiting amongst other things the national collection of berberis at Sherwood House in Devon. This privately owned … Continue reading

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