Evergreens in February on the South Coast

Evergreens in February on the South Coast: a surprisingly successful combination of Pittosporum tobira, Hebe rakaiensis and Symphytum Slade Farm which flowers in early Spring (for many months) and is a great food source for bumble bees
hebe rakiensis, symphytum Slade Farm, pittosporum tobira

Formal planters in Central London

Timeless and elegant; bespoke fibreglass planters and window boxes and bay (Laurus nobilis) cones. Each planter has an internal reservoir to minimise drips and staining to the stonework
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A softer look for the south front

Using a patchwork of reclaimed York stone and planting in the open, gravel-filled joints, we have transformed a rather bleak and uncomfortable but sunny terrace into something much more in keeping with the original house and the way it is now used – BEFORE and AFTER

After - a patchwork of pavings and planting

After – a patchwork of pavings and planting

south terrace BEFORE copy

Geranium, Dicentra & Brunnera

Geranium Dicentra Brunnera

Geranium Dicentra Brunnera


A communal garden in Maida Vale in April: a woodland planting under trees; Geranium macrorrhizum, white Dicentra and Brunnera Jack Frost. Planted last year, it struggled with the dry summer but seems to have come good

Amelanchier & Clematis alpina on Wiltshire chalk

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A garden in Wiltshire, in late April, planted about 10 years ago. A chance and very pretty combination of Amelanchier (lamarckii?) and Clematis alpina Constance. The Amelanchier was a ‘special request’ and I didn’t expect it to thrive on thick chalk – but it has

A vertical summer garden

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On this grey November day, I comfort myself with this photo of the banked planting in the courtyard outside my office shot in late June. Achillea (A. Moonshine and Red Velvet), Eryngium Sapphire Blue, Lilium regale, Euphorbia characias, Linaria, alchemilla planted as a floral wall in stacked cattle troughs; mostly all gone now but will, I hope, return next year even better.

vines in Kensington

Grape vines in Kensington, London

Grape vines in Kensington, London

This is a contemporary pergola, an awning almost, in a south-facing garden in Kensington, London. It is made from stainless steel and heavy duty bamboo canes. Designed by Mark Lutyens; made by Mark Bazeley. It was installed about 5 years ago and is now – August – festooned with wisteria and grape vines.

Millstone fountain

A millstone fountain surrounded by blue iris

A millstone fountain surrounded by blue iris

This is a small fountain we made 5 years ago – a millstone mounted in a stainless steel tank (made by Mark Bazeley, the Nottingham master fabricator) – which is the centre piece of a small geometric box (Buxus) parterre with blue iris in-fill planting. When first installed, it looked a little stark; 5 years on, it looks very good. The moral of the story is: just add water – and wait!

Isle of Wight Garden

Gravel garden & oak pergola

Gravel garden & oak pergola

Swimming pool, pink oleanders & Purbeck wall

Swimming pool, pink oleanders & Purbeck wall


High summer and a heatwave on the Isle of Wight has brought this new garden to life. The gravel garden plantings – Gaura, valerian, Verbena bonariensis, Eryngium, thymes, Stipa tenuissima etc – have exploded. See the earlier blog for a view of this garden 6 months ago

A Spring lawn with bulbs

Tulip Queen of the Night, Tulip  Shirley, blue Camassia, Malus Golden Hornet. England late May

Tulip Queen of the Night, Tulip Shirley, blue Camassia, Malus Golden Hornet. England late May

A wildflower lawn with Spring bulbs in late May. Tulip Queen of the Night, Tulip Shirley, blue Camassia, daffodil Thalia; crabapple trees Malus Golden Hornet in background, and behind them pleached lime trees