If you’re feeling a little jaded with your garden, need some fresh ideas or just fancy a look round someone’s else’s garden followed by a cup of tea and cake … or even a glass of prosecco, I recommend checking out The National Gardens Scheme for gardens open near you.
June is a lovely month for visiting gardens, and this gives you the opportunity to see ones that are often open only two or three times during the year. It’s also a great way of seeing real English gardens if you’re visiting from abroad.
So with the sun shining we set off for Rose Cottage in Surrey.
The archway takes you through to the main part of the garden and large lawn.
There were lots of lovely cottage garden plants, like these cornflowers that are so easy to grow from seed.
and Thalictrum delavayi, one of my favourites:
these grow quickly during spring, producing elegant flower stems that open into fluffy little flowers.
The plant reaches 1-1.5 metres tall and likes to be planted in rich soil in dappled shade:
It’s the perfect time of year for Allium:
They look so good planted in swathes if you have enough room:
and the bees love them, if you look closely and you can just spot a tiny bee. Plant the bulbs in early autumn in a sunny, sheltered position.
A pond is always a good addition to a garden, somewhere nice to sit and gaze at the water, you can see the bench tucked away in the background. A pond is good for attracting beneficial wildlife, birds, bees, insects, into the garden too.
This one has Koi carp in a deep section of the pond an a section that’s too shallow for the Koi where I spotted some newts. Tadpoles, newts etc need a sanctuary of their own if they’re not to be gobbled up by goldfish and Koi. In turn frogs will eat up slugs so you won’t have to resort to those nasty slug pellets.
There’s also a tapestry of neatly clipped topiary:
The other ingredient you need to keep your garden looking fabulous is this:
An area for composting grass, uncooked kitchen waste, garden clippings etc. It’s not a glamorous aspect of the garden, but vital to keep the plants looking good.
All the material breaks down over a few months to make wonderful compost for the garden borders. It doesn’t have to be carted away to tips, but is put to good use in the garden, so it’s sustainable too.
Have a look at the National Garden Scheme website here and plan your next garden visit.
images: Jill Anderson