The Leightons, Neston, Wirral, Cheshire
Paula and Tony spoke to me at RHS Tatton Flower show at my show garden, which they loved for my planting style. By the end of the following week we had established a good client-garden designer relationship and agreed to divide their garden design requirements into several phases for budget and time reasons. Phase I includes design and planting of a very large raised sandstone wall at the front of their property, and a very deep herbaceous border at the rear of the house. The sandstone wall has recently been completed and they are delighted with the results.
The sandstone wall planted in a ‘contemporary meets prairie’ style. Plants were selected to complement the colours of the sandstone, and for their suitability to an exposed site. Although the majority of these plants are mature, some plants are small so not yet visible, as is the case for the 150 allium bulbs within the scheme. These plants will ensure year round interest but require very little maintenance.
More planting and design for Phase I coming soon.....
My clients Mal and Terry had acquired a large piece of land at the bottom of their existing garden. After removing some old diseased trees and hedges (and two old septic tanks!), they were faced with a daunting expanse of mud.
We agreed the layout of the new garden and firstly made the path. This deep border was the first part of the garden to be planted. The soil is heavy so we incorporated plenty of grit. This photograph was taken one year after planting, and shows the persicaria, gaura and Kaffir lilies romping away!
More of this garden to follow...
This is a project to be done on a shoestring but importantly involves the creation of what I hope will become a beautiful, soothing space for reflection. The veterinary students have raised £100 towards the plants for Hannah's garden; Hannah was a fellow student who tragically passed away last year. A lovely sundial and wooden seat had previously been purchased and currently stand in a corner of a large lawned area where the new garden will be made. The sundial features a sunflower, which was Hannah's favorite flower, and the plants I have ordered include a floribunda rose called 'Hannah Gordon' that was chosen by her parents.
The garden site is exposed and consists of grass edged with mature shrubs and trees, and bounded on one side by a wooden post and rail fence overlooking the Welsh hills. The memorial garden needs to blend in whilst providing a private reflective space to sit in. I have selected some Cornus mas trees (pictured) to create a loose boundary to surround a central area where the sundial will stand, surrounded by soft grasses interplanted with three roses. The grasses and roses will create a haze of colour and movement whilst softening the lines of the stone sundial plinth. The only other feature will be a mass planting of Rudbeckia 'Golsturm' (I have ordered fifty plug plants) for a swathe of late summer/autumn sunflower-like 'sunshine'. The seat will be placed to enjoy views of the planting and sundial. During the autumn I am hoping to 'acquire' some free tiny Narcissus for underplanting the Cornus trees.
The planting should look natural and will provide year round interest for humans, birds and insects. This feels like a daunting prospect at the moment since it is a huge responsibility to the students and Hannah's family.
In February I was invited to record a podcast at the Mental Health Institute in London. The podcast, which is about the 'Sleep Well' show garden, sleep, mental health and green spaces went live on Tuesday March 12 ahead of World Sleep Day on Friday March 15 !
Last autumn the Sleep Well show garden was donated and rebuilt at Wirral Autism Together, Bromborough Pool Garden Centre. See our blog for an in depth report!
An exciting report about the building of the show garden at Wirral Autism Together, Bromborough Pool Garden Centre. The garden was recreated with the help of some of the centre's service users, The Bearded Villains and staff from the RBS. Everyone got onto the bed for some photos!
RHS Flower Show Tatton Park 18-22 July 2018
1. Ficus carica ‘Brown Turkey’
2. Santolina chamaecyparissus
3. Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’
4. Deschampsia cespitosa ‘Goldtau’
5. Sanguisorba ‘Tanna’
6. Agastache ‘Black Adder’
7. Artemisia ‘Powis Castle’
8. Echinacea purpurea ‘Milkshake’
9. Echinacea purpurea ‘White Swan’
10. Eupatorium maculatum Atropurpureum ‘Orchard Dene’
11. Salvia ‘Amistad’
12. Salvia officinalis ‘Purpurascens’
13. Verbena bonariensis
14. Foeniculum vulgare ‘Purpureum’
15. Verbena officinalis
16. Ipomea ‘Bright Ideas’
[1- 3] Paramount Plants (mail order)
 Crocus (mail order)
[5- 13] Dovecote Nurseries, Burton, Wirral
 Sarah Raven (mail order)
 Norfolk Herbs
 Goredale Garden Centre, Wirral
TRUG creates kitchen and ornamental gardens for clients in Wirral, Cheshire and the North West. We aim to make you fall in love with your garden, using appropriate plants and protecting wildlife wherever possible. We create individual designs and planting plans for ornamental and kitchen gardens and offer a friendly advice and aftercare service to ensure you get the most out of your garden.
TRUG are creating a garden at the Tatton RHS show - please come and say hello if you visit the show:
If you would like to read more about the design and planning for the garden please read my blog:
TRUG can provide
If you would like to discuss anything or request a quote please call or mail me:
My client Janet Haigh asked me to design this coastal garden for the purpose of exhibiting her handmade enamelled sculptures for an Open Arts event in Portishead. The copper sculptures were enamelled by Janet in her kiln using a novel technique, and were very heavy and completely weatherproof. My brief was to show the these beautiful and unique pieces of art in a complementary garden setting.
I wanted the visitors to the garden to 'chance upon' the artworks and therefore created different 'rooms' within the garden, which could only be seen upon venturing from the main pathway and exploring. These almost hidden sculptures were then made to appear to grow from the garden by strategically arranging existing or newly bought plants. Smaller pieces such as the anemones had wire attached to the back and were anchored to trellis to appear part of a climbing plants; a collection of anemones were made into a wreath for the dog's graves.
Once we had placed the sculptures and 'planted them in' I felt that the sea wall looked rather bare and suggested a series of identical plant enamels that would run the length of the wall and echo the horizontals of the landscape beyond. Janet created the most perfect 'tulips', which we simply leaned against the wall.
Janet's work as a textile designer is documented in her blog janethaighherwork.com