This is my daughter’s newly levelled garden. She has asked me to help her plan it. Where do I start?
The Unchangeable Factors
The garden must have a large grass area to accommodate children playing. There should be a vegetable garden and shrubs as well as flowers.
The land is well-drained with sandy soil. It was used many years ago for grazing cattle. There is about six inches of topsoil with pebbles underneath that. (The pebbles were on top but a man with a mini-digger put the pebbles underneath in a weekend.)
The Current Situation
There are tall silver birch trees that are about 15 years old down the right hand side of the garden. Beyond those is a six foot high timber fence that will rot and fall down within two years. Beyond that is a farmer’s overgrown hawthorn and gorse (furze) hedge with cattle grazing in the field.
At the bottom of the garden the fence continues, with a raised field boundary, a large ash tree in the field and more trees inside the fence.
The garden slopes up towards the fence as a result of the plot being levelled.
The Plan So Far
My daughter is erecting a timber fence made from planks down the left side of her garden where it adjoins my own land. The washing line in the picture will be moved closer to the house (out of camera shot) onto a higher, flat part of the garden.
I will be planting a mixed hedge along the boundary on my side of the fence. This will consist of lilac trees, pussy willow (goat willow), hypericum, weigela and flowering currant. I have had cuttings of these growing since autumn 2010 and they will be planted in the ground in March 2012.
- Cut down the silver birch trees
- Cut back the overgrown farmer’s hedge (He won’t mind)
- Plant shrubs along her side of the fence
- Put a vegetable garden at the end of her land (but the trees would need to come out so it is light enough)
I would welcome suggestions from anyone reading this. Please post them as comments below. Thanks a million.