Making a Country Garden

This English country garden surrounds an 18th century farmhouse. The land you see was previously a field, which was levelled and a retaining wall built of reclaimed bricks.

Norfolk - at work

This picture shows work in progress transforming the field. A wide gravel path was created around the house, with a terrace for entertaining, so that the owners would be encouraged to walk out of doors whatever the weather.


A lavender walk was created along the path, its colour reflected in the painted French park chairs. Steps, just visible, lead up to the fountain garden with Lutyens bench.


The owner wanted cottage style planting  so we used perennials such as lupins, astrantia, aquilegia, penstemons , including plants attractive to bees such as  lavender, scabious, sedum, agastache, achillea , erysimum and verbascum.


More structural plants include a variety of euphorbias, swathes of grasses such as Miscanthus and Stipa gigantia, Agapanthus and Phlomis as well as evergreen structure provided by shaped yew and box.


A smaller shaded garden was created in the old farmyard in front of the ancient outhouses, the soft planting backed by structural shrubs such as Cornus controversa, the lovely “Wedding cake tree”, creating a suitable setting for a garden in the countryside.


(All photography mine)

9 thoughts on “Making a Country Garden

  1. This looks wonderful! But most importantly it looks like something I’d want to use, to live in. I can really see how it would mature beautifully: not just something for those makeover shows, but something real, like an outdoor home.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely! In the midst of a dreary winter I am feeling inspired to rejuvenate my garden in a few months. Could you please share what size gravel was used and how thick it was laid down. Is it packed or do your feet sink into it a bit? Thank you!


    • Hi Julie.Glad the post inspired you. Love using gravel when practical, easy to use and the crunchy sound reminds me of France and also deters thieves. It’s important to prepare the ground well beforehand to give a solid foundation,eg with a base of hardcore as we did here,and lay weed suppressing fabric if you like. I find medium grade gravel, 10-20mm shingle, the easiest to walk on.(I wonder do you have dogs – the very small grade can get trapped in their paws, annoying & easily brought inside, and if you have cats, they love to “use” it). Larger grade is too hard to walk on. Lay the gravel about 50mm deep.Hope this helps. Good luck with your plans. Lorna.


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