Small gardens alan titchmarsh,shade gardening ideas,japanese landscaping portland,garden sculpture new england artisan - Review

07.02.2014
Successful gardens can be created in the smallest spaces, and in this inspiring and practical guide Alan Titchmarsh shows how to transform even the tiniest outdoor area into an attractive garden. A TINY front garden can still look amazing, it just needs careful planning, Shade-tolerant and fragrant plants like chamomile and golden marjoram are great choices.
CREATE your own secret garden and discover a serene world of peace and tranquility, says Alan. GETTYCreate your own secret garden and discover a serene world of peace and tranquility, says AlanSome parts of the garden are for the rest of the world to admire. ALAN Titchmarsh is Britain's horticultural guru but his own garden has remained under wraps - until now. To be honest, mine is not so much a secret garden as a private one, and that’s a bit of a novelty really. The pleasure of sharing the fruits of our labours is something treasured by British gardeners, which goes some way to explaining why almost 4,000 private and domestic gardens are open under the aegis of the National Gardens Scheme each year. Thanks to Gardeners’ World I had the chance, each week from February to November, to say to an audience of several million, “Just come and look at this!” It was a great privilege, and a great outlet for anyone with a passion for plants. When our current house came on the market, it fitted the bill perfectly – a Georgian farmhouse just a stone’s throw from where we already lived, big enough for the two of us (plus the girls when they had families and came to stay), and a relatively level-to-gently undulating garden that was neither too large nor too small with decent soil – the chalk remains, about a foot and a half below the surface, but there are fewer flints and no clay.
The garden at Barleywood totalled two acres, plus around 35 acres of meadow and woodland that we turned into a nature reserve. The garden of our first marital home measured 15 feet by 35 feet, so I am well aware of my good fortune in being able to “move up a bit” and have more space.


Because nature interests me as much as cultivated plants, and because I feel a deep-seated responsibility to the Earth, we garden organically.
This is a work in progress (for gardens are never finished) and a testament to the hard work of the three people who made it – me, along with Bill and Sue who have worked Chez Titchmarsh for 20-odd years; Sue as a gardener and Bill as… well… everything else.
The garden remains private and is not open to the public, but through these pages you are welcome to squeeze under the gate like Peter Rabbit and take a look at what we’ve created, after working for 10 years in fair weather and foul.
I would be less than truthful if I did not admit that I am, from time to time, as exasperated as any other gardener. Extracted from My Secret Garden by Alan Titchmarsh, with photographs by Jonathan Buckley, published by BBC Books on October 25, priced at ?25. Also avoid a dense planting scheme that will obscure your windows, making your front rooms dark and dingy.Hedges take a lot of upkeep and can look too chunky in a small space, so opt for a long, narrow bed instead. Having used our last garden at Barleywood for filming and photography for 20-odd years, I promised my wife and family when we moved, back in 2002, that the next garden would be just for us. Ungrateful, I suppose, since using my garden as a workshop-cum-film set has enabled me to earn a decent living.
When we sold the house and garden, we retained the meadow and woodland, which we continue to manage for wildlife and our native flora. Well, people kept asking what the “new” garden was like (I think some folk thought that without the pressure of a TV camera, I wouldn’t bother quite so much.) And, to be honest, I missed sharing my triumphs (and disasters) in the way that gardeners do. The deal was that Jonathan Buckley – a brilliant photographer who has, over the years, become a good friend – would record our progress and I would share my garden in the form of a book.


It encapsulates my own passion for gardening and my love of line, form, scale, perspective and colour. Because this, rather than the nightly fare of death and destruction delivered by the news bulletins, is what endures – spring returns each year, summer erupts into a billowing shower of flowers, autumn banishes our failures and our successes in equal measure, and winter provides a yearly cauterisation during which we can plot and plan for next year with the gardener’s unfailing optimism.
That way the garden would still be private and I would have the pleasure of progressing at my own pace, rather than fitting in with the hectic schedule of filming.
It will give you an idea of my tastes and predilections, my whims and fancies, as well as being a soapbox for me to expound a modest amount of my personal garden philosophy. At that moment I know I am where I most like being: at home, among the birds and the blossom, gently pottering in my garden. The second reason was that a large part of the garden was on a northwest-facing, one-in-four slope, so was slow to warm up. I think my garden does betray a few delusions of grandeur – I like urns and finials and other classical touches – but I hope the resulting style is elegant rather than pretentious.
That sort of garden is simply crying out for a dogleg in the middle, so separate it into a series of three staggered rooms separated by tall garden dividers that barely mask the view.Go for a trellis screen planted with clematis, stretching halfway across the garden and with an archway through to your secret area beyond.



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