Shrub feature borders

Shrubs in late spring

It is in late spring, just after the tulips have ended, that I become delighted by the many flowering shrubs and distinctive foliage colours that seem to dominate the garden. Of course there are various perennials flowering including Euphorbia, Geum, Geranium and bulbous plants such as Camassia and ornamental onions, but foliage colours and the flowering mounds …

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Spring into action

My last post showed the garden three weeks ago just after I had knocked down all the perennials with the question “would you want your garden looking like that?”. Well, as promised, the perennials have reappeared rapidly to cover the ground level debris and the shrubs are bursting into flower. This is how it was …

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Flowering Shrubs

Shrubs with Perennials

Shrubs are at their most useful when they bring height and flower colour to those gardens dominated by perennials. This is the case in my own gardens in early summer. I try to select shrubs that will sit high and command the borders in which they grow. By late summer those that once drew all the …

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Shrub Feature Border

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 perennial meadows are created using a mix of theme plants and complementary plants, the shrubs …

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Berberis valdiviana

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 garden houses fascinating collections of trees and shrubs, in particular acers, magnolias and, the reason …

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Andy McIndoe at MyGardenSchool

Online Gardening Courses

Choosing and Using Shrubs in Garden Design I have just spend a month following Andy McIndoe’s course on shrubs at MyGardenSchool, the online intensive training for keen gardeners and landscape professionals. As one of the tutors myself, I was interested to see how it worked in one of my colleague’s classrooms, but also I have …

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