May 252013
 
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The Brewin Dolphin garden

What I like doing best at Chelsea is looking for ideas that I could replicate in my own garden one day. And as I may finally have one (fingers crossed – it’s all going through at the moment), this was a year when I could actually walk around noting ideas that I could actually put into practice. Hurrah!

There were quite a few roses around this year, and I liked the informal, lax habit of the Rosa rugosa in the Brewin Dolphin garden (above).

The Telegraph Garden

The Telegraph Garden

I liked Christopher Bradley-Hole’s garden but felt I’d seen many elements of it before – the multi-stemmed trees, blocks of box and yew, the meadowy planting, the cow parsley… Not only in previous Chelsea gardens but also at the Canal House in Amsterdam last year. That said, I love a multi-stemmed tree, neatly clipped box, and a bit of meadowy planting, and would definitely like to include them in my own garden.

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The Homebase Garden

I also the loved the way that edible and ornamental plants were mingled together in Adam Frost’s ‘Sowing the Seeds of Change’ garden for Homebase. I will definitely be doing this – I want to cram in as many edibles as possible.

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Un Garreg (One Stone) garden

I loved this simple oak bench in the Un Garreg (One Stone) garden. It may look simple but I bet it cost a small fortune.

Get Well Soon garden

Get Well Soon garden

The pebble path in the Healing Garden was designed to be walked on barefoot, stimulating reflexology pressure points.

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Get Well Soon garden

Ponds scare me. They look complicated to get right, and I’ve seen a lot of bad ones. But this looks really doable – it’s shallow (so not too much digging) and the pebbles cover a multitude of sins.

NSPCC Garden of Magical Childhood

NSPCC Garden of Magical Childhood

And for sheer flight of fancy, who could resist this kids’ treehouse in the NSPCC garden? I think it made everyone want to be a kid again.

So there you have it. This time next year I may be the proud owner of a garden that contains some multi-stemmed trees, blocks of box and yew, some meadowy planting, lots of edibles, a pond and a reflexology path. And a treehouse, obviously.
Oct 182012
 

St Albans

When I was growing up my mum and dad seemed to be constantly decorating – they still are, in fact. They seem to have rules about how often a room needs updating and I wouldn’t be surprised if they keep a decorating log book. Whenever they tell me they’re redoing a room, they tell me how many (or how few, usually) years it’s been since it was last done.

When I was growing up in the 1980s, there was much excitement in the Peerless household when Dulux brought out a range of white emulsions with a hint of another colour. ‘Apple White’ and ‘Apricot White’ made a real change from boring old magnolia and were used liberally around the family abode.

If these cyclamen were a Dulux colour, they’d be ‘Cyclamen White’. They’re the most delicate shade of pink, with pretty mauve markings that complement the violas perfectly. The silver Senecio cineraria complement the pale markings on the cyclamen leaves and bring it all together nicely.

All of the plants are available at a Homebase near you. Well done for spotting them, Mum!

Apr 132011
 

Somerset

This was my first ‘drive-by’ shot for this blog – I hopped out of the car, took a couple of pics,  jumped back in and sped off. Which must have looked extremely suspicious.

Anyway, I took the pic not for the arch, which is rather lovely, but for the stone circle on the lawn. Fancy having that in your front garden! There are a lot of them in this area of Somerset (near Cheddar Gorge) but I’m not sure whether this one pre-dates the house or is a more recent addition to reflect the surrounding landscape. For all I know stone circles might be on sale in the local Homebase.