K's Garden

Building a large garden on a budget

About Saturday 12 July 2008

This story is about the garden of the house my wife and I moved to in June 2006. The house has a spacious garden, but the previous owner was not a keen gardener. When we arrived there were good windbreaks, some mature trees, but no great interest – it lacked the sort of thing where you walk round a garden and think “I wonder what’s round that corner – or through that arch” and when you get there you are in for a nice surprise! There wasn’t even a greenhouse or a vegetable patch.

I developed an interest in gardening in my early teens. I don’t know why, it was not something my parents were particularly interested in at the time. I bought a greenhouse when I was about 15 (a 10′ x 8′ Eden) and grew seedlings (Annuals mostly) in the spring, some Tomatoes down one side in the Summer (Ring culture, remember that?) and the other side had staging where I experimented with Melons, Fushias, Cyclamen and goodness knows what else.

My parents had a large garden, and when I was 18 I dug and landscaped a shrubbery. I suppose it was about 2/3rd of an acre. That was back in the early ’70s. But back to this story:

First job – buy a large wheel barrow on eBay:

then the projects started … at first we planned just a couple of borders, and a vegetable patch, leaving the remainder as scrub and planting some woodland trees, but as it evolved we decided to convert the whole area into garden.

Below are some Before and After/Now photographs of the various Projects with links to the relevant pages where I have chronicled our progress, in case you are interested. At the bottom of the page is a plan of the garden projects. I blog very infrequently I’m afraid, and only when something peaks my interest – there is a Blog Index, in case you are looking for something specific, and if you would like notification when I write something new please fill in your details to “Follow this blog” on the right.

The Main Garden

Main Garden - Mar 2006

Main Garden – Mar 2006 – tired tennis court and rough grass

Main Garden – Sep 2016 – Centre Court and The Long Walk

Links (left to right):

  • Pleached Limes
  • Barn
  • Hot border (details below)
  • Centre Court
  • Blue and White Shrubbery (details below)
  • Winter Garden (out of shot to the right – article coming soon)

Main Garden – Sep 2016 – Centre Court, The Long Walk and Folly

Beyond Centre Court are Rooms, to left and right, for Fruit and Nut walk, the Holm Oak Walk, Holly Labyrinth, Hydrangea Walk, Round White garden and Oriental Stroll Garden

Hot Herbaceous Border

Inspired by a visit to Hidcote Manor but proving surprisingly difficult to get plants with the right sort of Red Flower. So many advertised as Red turn out to be Orange, Pink or Purple …

Herbaceous border - Sep 2007

Herbaceous border – Sep 2007

June 2014

June 2014


Blue and White Shrubbery

The first bed that we planted in 2008, so now the shrubs, at least, have some decent height. We subsequently decided on a Blue and White theme, so are stuck with a number of decent sized shrubs that are Yellow, Red and all the other colours of the rainbow which we are, naturally, loath to replace. So its a “Some Blue and White” theme.

Mar 2008 – Planting

Shrubbery - Jun 2014

Shrubbery – Jun 2014


The Front Hedge and Topiary

Front Hedge - May 2006

Front Hedge – May 2006

Aug 2016 – Copper Beech and Yew Topiary

One day it dawned on me that the number of Yews is just right for a Chess Set – so that’s what its going to be … one day.


The Back Garden

Back Garden - Mar 2006

Back Garden – Mar 2006

Back Garden - Aug 2012

Back Garden – Aug 2012

Ponds – Apr 2008

Ponds – Jul 2011

Infinity Pond Reflection – Aug 2014

Pergola Ready to Build

Pergola – 2011


beyond the Ponds is

The Exotic Garden

Exotic Garden Entrance - Sep-2011

Exotic Garden Entrance – Sep-2011

Planting - May-2012

Planting – May-2012

Jungle! - Sep-2014

Jungle! – Sep-2014


Returning to the Main Garden about half way down is

The Lavender Walk

Lavender Walk East - Jun 2009

Lavender Walk East – Jun 2009

Lavender Walk East - Jun 2013

Lavender Walk East – Jun 2013

Lavender Walk West – Oct 2010

Lavender Walk West - Jul 2013

Lavender Walk West – Jul 2013


at the end of the Blue and White Border, Hot Border and Centre Court is

The Long Walk

Oct 2010 – Marked out by Mower

Long Walk - Aug 2016

Long Walk – Aug 2016

At the end of the Long Walk is the Folly:

Wall Construction - May 2014

Construction – May 2014

Folly - Aug 2016

Folly Finished – Aug 2016


to the East of the Long Walk is

The Fruit and Nut Garden

Fruit and Nut South – Mar 2011

Fruit and Nut Walk – Jul 2017


to the West of The Long Walk is

The Hydrangea Walk

Hydrangea Walk – Oct-2010

Hydrangea Walk – Jul 2017


at the far end of The Long Walk is

The Holm Oak Walk

Holm Oak Walk – Oct 2011 – Prepare for planting

Holm Oak Walk – Jul 2017

Sorry about the photo – it needs a jolly good haircut!


and to the East of The Holm Oak Walk is

The Serpentine Maze

Digging the Maze

Maze - Mar 2013

Maze – Mar 2013


at the other end of the garden is

The Woodland Walk

Woodland Walk - First season after planting - Mar 2013

Woodland Walk – First season after planting Swowdrops – Mar 2013

Snowdrops – East – Feb 2017


and The Woodland Walk leads to

The Vegetable Patch

Vegetable Patch Ploughed – 2007

Jul 2009


and within The Vegetable Patch are

The Greenhouses

Greenhouses – Apr 2008


Started planting in Spring 2015 is

The Round White Garden

Formerly referred to as the “Room #101 Project” this garden is between The Long Walk and the Fruit and Nut Walk and is 24 yards x 19 yards. We planted the rectangular perimeter hedge, then made it oval, waited for inspiration!, and eventually decided on a White planting theme and incorrectly called it the Round Garden. Given that the old Tennis court has become know as “Centre Court” perhaps I should go the whole hog and name this “The Oval”?!

Round White Garden - May 2013

Round White Garden – May 2013

Round White Garden - Feb 2015

Round White Garden – Feb 2015

Round White Garden – Jul 2017

Future Projects

The second room sandwiched between The Long Walk and the Fruit and Nut Walk and beyond the Round White garden (above) is the largest of the new rooms (40 yards x 19 yards) in which we have started making a Japanese Stroll Garden

Room #102 - Apr 2013

Room #102 – Apr 2013

Japanese Stroll Garden – Nov 2015 – Earth Moving to create contours

Japanese Stroll Garden – Sep 2017

A new Blog Article with all the gory details! is under construction

We also want to plant an Autumn Garden close to the house to enjoy the Autumn Colours

Autumn Garden - Oct 2012

Autumn Garden – Oct 2012

Acer in Nov 2012, moved to Autumn Garden in 2013

Acer in Nov 2012, moved to Autumn Garden in 2013

and some Parterre close to the house – for which I have started propagating the thousands of plants which will be needed.

Garden Plan

Next: You might like to start with what Our Old House looked like, otherwise try the Projects page for an overview of what we are working on at our new house


5 Responses to “About”

  1. Bill Bennett Says:

    Wish i had your land!! I have just a small back garden, having said that its rammed full of tropical plants!!

  2. Love the before and after shots, reminds me of the Gardeners World magazine comment pages! Personal favourite is the lavender walk. such beautiful and “English” looking plants, with a wonderful traditional layout. My patch is no where near as big as yours, but there are definitely a few ideas which I’m going to try and steal, abet on a smaller scale 😉 . Thank you for sharing!

  3. Dear Kgarden, I’m away from home and not able to approve your comments on my blog – I’ll read them with great interest on my return on Thursday- frankly they will be a bright spark in an otherwise very gloomy week. Best, Andthegarden

  4. VP Says:

    Hi! Thanks for your comment over at mine. I love your projects and your experiments with seeing which daffodils work best for you. That’s just the kind of project I like to do!

    • kgarden Says:

      Many thanks. I look forward to the emails of updates to your blog … I’m far too lazy to update mine often enough, more frequent updates has been a failed New Year’s Resolution for donkey’s years now … !!

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