It came up in conversation that rose beds are not interesting in winter. But have you not heard of bulbs? They make the perfect underplanting for roses, because they appear when the roses are asleep and disappear again when the roses are getting ready to bloom. We should thank the brilliant garden designers at Capel Manor for this picture – they have placed clumps of blue Crocus and Iris reticulata throughout the rose garden so there is colour throughout the borders during February and March.
And of course – everything is in bloom in summer..
Cornus are the choice for winter colour – and there are varieties of cornus with red, orange, green and purple stems. I found these at the Clockhouse Nursery: Cornus alba ‘Siberica’ and Cornus stolonifera ‘Flaviramea’ . Where to put them in the garden though? Bare stems don’t work very well against a wall or a fence. They show best against evergreens or against the sky, and the best place of all is a position where they can be reflected in water.
In Autumn we tend to we run out of flowers and foliage takes centre stage. Sorbus ‘Joseph Rock’ makes a spectacular autumn feature for a small space. Here it shines in the October sun at Capel Manor, making a startling contrast against the greenery behind. We love this for a small garden, because it’s a graceful tree with interesting foliage and the canopy won’t block too much light. That means you can use the space below for different plants that will provide colour earlier in the year.
We admirers of gardens can be like bees, rushing from one gorgeous colourful display to the next – and loving every flowery fragrance.
Like bees we’re attracted to beautiful scents and colours. And perhaps this can teach us something about garden design.