As you can imagine, I’m rather obssessed with gardens and I’ve vowed to make the most of the summer and do a decent amount of garden visiting whenever I can.
So we spent part of this gloriously, sunny weekend visiting Tilford Cottage garden in Surrey.
The lower garden comprises mostly a large grass meadow with paths mown through it and studded with flowers.
It’s bounded by the River Wey and a shady area with trees and lots of benches to rest and admire the view.
There’s an impressive mass planting of undamaged Hostas. Rob Burn, the owner,this is partly due to the ducks from the nearby river eating up the slugs.
The garden becomes less formal further up the hill towards the house.
There’s a wonderful herb garden, with a curvy hedge boundary and blue gates.
The owner is an artist and there’s a variety of sculpture placed around the garden.
and lots of topiary.
This conifer has been cloud pruned to screen the studio.
The stems of these willows have been crossed over and tied together to make a living trellis, such a lovely way of dividing a garden without blocking the view.
So here’s three useful tips you can use in your garden:
- A mown path through long grass is a perfect method of managing a large area of grass without having to mow the whole lot, and it creates a lovely place for children to play.
- Hedges are a marvellous way of sub-dividing a garden, whatever it’s size. There’s more information about hedges here.
- Don’t be afraid to clip shape and generally experiment with shrubs and hedges. Jake Hobsons book The Art of Creative Pruning’ is very inspiring.
Make the most of a sunny weekend and visit a garden, looking round somenes else’s garden is a relaxing way to spend an afternoon and you’re bound to get some fresh ideas.
Tilford Cottage Garden is open via the NGS, see the website for details.
all images: Jill Anderson.