I been been away from The City Garden since the beginning of March with only four brief visits to The City Garden during the past four months. This Six on Saturday in The City Garden in July is therefore a rather sad story.
What if we treated the sloping site like a gravel garden, and planted with spaces between the plants?
We have to tackle a blank canvas and a sloping site – and the plants need to be HARDY. The soil is normal, and there is sunshine, apart from the shade under the magnolia tree.
What to plant underneath the magnolia tree? Euphorbias, Brunnera, Bergenias…
They murmured something about ‘a table and chairs for sipping wine…’ and I think either this, or a small tree, but we need some kind of focus to balance the magnolia. (I remembered this view at Pensthorpe.) And then hardy, easy care plants: Miscanthus ‘Kleine silberspinne’ and ‘Morning Light’ behind the table and chairs, with Cornus Alba ‘Elegantissima’ or Viburnum Opulus ‘Compactum’ along the barn wall on the right hand side.
And in the sunny part: Pennisetum Alpecuroides ‘Hamelm’, ‘Karley Rose’, or ‘Villosum’; Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’, with Nepeta ‘Walker’s Low’ and Alchemilla spilling over the edges and attracting the bees.
And for height should we squeeze in Anemone ‘Hadspens Abundance’, Verbena Bonariensis? Or are Rudbeckia and Gaillardia better colours?
I have been replanting one of the beds in the Suffolk garden – hard work – and at the end of day sagged into a chair with a glass of white wine to enjoy the results.
The perennials, as well as the grasses, are looking absolutely gorgeous in this wonderful garden.
On a hot day, less windy than it has been, I visited RHS Hyde Hall.
The entrance gate makes the first statement about the property and gives a hint of what lies beyond. What should it say about you? Organised? Conventional? Imaginative?
It is difficult to give advice on planting. What would you do with a brief like this: