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A Natural, Dutch-Styled Garden

What really makes the look and feel of any garden space is to be surrounded by planting. This immersive feeling is what most of us crave. The trouble is that without the plant knowledge most people tend to just put narrow borders around the edge of the garden and patio.

The previous owner of this garden had built a raised patio in the corner of a large plot leaving grass running straight up to it. Two cloud pruned Japanese Hollies sat either side of a hastily added ‘step’ with barely enough space between them to pass through.

Expanses of grass are great for families but in Winter they don’t make the best surface to walk on. I usually include enough paths in any design, to get around the garden. These lead you to a destination and when in front of planting, save the edge of the lawn from plants romantically spilling over.

So, the previously forgotten and fairly unused patio in the corner was made into a place to discover not just by taking a path to it but by having this path curl around into it. This left the area under the Japanese Hollies to be planted up, completing the enveloped experience of being on this patio.

Flowers close up
The planting is naturalistic but includes plenty of colour, in the so called ‘Dutch Style’. Perennial Salvias, Eryngiums and other drought tolerant plants mixed with ornamental grasses. Lots of pollen and nectar sources for insects with Lonicera fragrantissima covering the wintertime. There are shrubs included on the boundaries for better cover. Some Roses also have a place here. Beautifully trained fruit trees are supported against the main fence at the client’s request.
Bobs Mobile 4
As with most of our projects, the planting was stunning, even in the first year. Because the borders are quite deep in places, with shrubs giving some structure, the planting really transformed the garden. This space went from mainly lawn to garden oasis.