For some background about me and my gardening experience, as well as a Before and After photo of each project, please see the About page
If you haven’t already seen it you might like to see what Our Old House looked like
This is a list of our Projects:
One of the first things we did was to create a Vegetable Patch in 2007. We then erected a pair of Greenhouses with the smaller 12′ x 10′ for propagating, and the larger 30′ x 10′ as a cropping greenhouse
In Summer 2007 we decided that we didn’t like the arrangement of the Ponds and revamped and reshaped them
In Autumn 2007 we planted a Rose Bed by the terrace where we Bar-B-Q in the Summer
Our initial planting was intended to just be two areas either side of an old tennis court comprising the Shrubbery – a border we made from an area of rough grass and initially planted in Spring 2008. The second border, on the other side of the Tennis Court was to be a mixed Herbaceous border and it was initially planted in 2009 and more plants added in 2010. In 2011/2012 we started changing this to a Hot / Red border, and moved the plants which were the wrong colour! into other borders which we are creating in the Garden Extension.
In 2008 we bought a few Chickens and they entertain us with their characteristic waddle as they run around the garden!
In Autumn 2008 we replaced the Leylandii Front Hedge with a Copper Beech hedge and Yew Topiary and also in Winter 2008 some nearby Poplars were replaced with a line of Pleached Limes to make a screen between the front of the house and the main garden. I knew nothing about training a Pleached Hedge!
As part of the Barn Project we ripped up the old tennis court and reused the hardcore, and that created an area for a Topiary Lawn which we refer to as the Centre Court which was planted in Autumn 2011 and subsequent we planted a Berberis “skirting board” around the Yew hedge in 2013. It is bisected by The Cross Walk which is lined with Lavenders originally planted in 2009 and extended in 2012.
There is an area of rough grass at the end of our plot which narrows to a point, and which we call “The Spit” in which we originally planned to create an informal Woodland – area. In 2010 we changed our minds and decided to create a more formal arrangement and started the Garden Extension Project. This saw hedges planted in Winter 2010/2011 for the Long Walk and also hedges around some planned “Rooms”; in Autumn 2011 we extended the Long Walk with the Holm Oak Walk. In Autumn 2011 we also bought some Oxford Tamworth piglets to “dig” the Hydrangea Walk and we started propagating Hydrangeas in Autumn 2012 and then planting when they had grown big enough.
In Autumn 2011 we decided to build a Jungle Garden (based on some Exotic Gardens we had visited) in order to have a garden near the house that would mature quickly whilst we make the long-wait for the other projects to mature.
In Spring 2012 on impulse I bought a few thousand Snowdrops to create a Winter Woodland Walk, other winter flowering plants will follow.
In 2013 we started planing the new “rooms” in the garden extension. The first was the Fruit and Nut Walk which was planted with espalier Apples and Pears on one side, and Cobnuts on the other. In Autumn 2015 we planted Daffodils between the Cobnuts as a cutting-bed for the house, and also as a trial of suitable varieties for subsequent mass-planting nearer to the house. I got carried away – again! – and planted 25 bulbs of each of 28 different varieties. The vases look lovely in the house in Spring. I now justify this: the flowering season is 12 weeks and we need two vases a week with 30 stems in each, so I do actually need 700 Daffodils.
In Autumn 2013 we planted the Serpentine Holly Maze to fill in a tricky and difficult triangle at the far end of the Garden Extension. It is mostly planted with ordinary holly plants, but parts are planted with variegated forms.
In 2014 we started work on the Round White Garden which will probably wind up with similar plants to the White Garden at Sissinghurst.
During 2014-15 we built a Folly at the end of the Long Walk. I’d love to know what I should do with it … but I suppose that IS the point.
In Autumn 2015 we started work on the last of the Garden Extension rooms – a Japanese Stroll garden; we are still working (as of Autumn 2015 … nope, even as 2017 draws to a close its still not finished) on the hard landscaping, and I have not written an article yet, but there are some pictures in the Autumn 2015 Tour and also photographs of Compton Acres Japanese Garden which was our original inspiration.
Autumn 2016 we planted several thousand Spring Crocus and the small Tete-a-Tete Daffodils on the Cross Court, and in Autumn 2017 started the bulb planting in the lawn.
In the Spring of 2017 we ripped up some rather boring shrubs adjacent to our main Summer sitting-out terrace, and are goign to plant some sort of Cloud Pruned Topiary there.
In 2017 we started thinking about a Winter and Autumn garden – trees with good Autumn colour, and then under planted with things that will look good during the Winter such as Dogwoods with their colourful winter stems. As part of that I thought we might need some pretty Crocuses in Spring – so many to chose from and I only managed to whittle my list down to 15, so I bought a couple of dozen of each and planted them in pots so we could see how they look in the Spring. Crocuses cost next to nothing … not quite the same story for nice Terracotta bulb pans …
The last thing we plan to do (I think!) is a Parterre between the house and the main garden. It probably seems odd that we have left this until last as we just have shaggy grass there at present, and its right in our eye line looking at the garden from the house, but I’ve been propagating plants for it (thousands of them …) and it will be quick to do, whereas other projects are 5 years in the making and to allow time for the hedges, then shrubs to grow.
There is also a plan of the garden showing how it has evolved, and both our original plan and our future plans, on the Next Page