My Pins

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


Just on the eastern outskirt of Campbell Town is "Riccarton", one of the first land grants in the area dating back to 1826 and owned by the Lyne family since 1909.

It is a charming serene oasis created amidst the "bones" of very old plantings where Poppy Lyne has created sweeping beds and graceful turns to compliment her great passion for bulbs and peonies. 

Not only do I draw inspiration from plantings, but also from gates and structures, the visual clues to the "doorways" from one area to another. 

This can still be achieved even in small gardens and they need not be expensive, just strong to stand the test of time, winds and to support the weight of growth.

I note with interest also the various ways of using rocks, plentiful on our own land, about the structures for borders and walkways.

An example of "cloud" pruning, a technique where branches are stripped bare and balls are encouraged at the ends, giving trees another design look all together. Their whimsical look puts me in mind of Dr, Suess illustrations.

Strong straight pruning lines and formal clipped hedges.

Box clipped into fences, columns and pillars.

Some focal points are as simple as taking advantage of a lost tree and using the stump as a column.

Or interesting weathered sculptural garden art,

Clever vistas...

Views beyond....

A memorial garden commemoration 100 years of Lyne ownership of the property.

A gate on the outer perimeter of the house garden looking further eastwards. 

The dovecote in the orchard.

The sheep brought in for drafting the lambs from the ewes look on bleating, a reminder of the importance of the wool industry in the district.

And a little further along we come to Poppy's vast plantings of peonies for cutting.

A grand passion and I can certainly understand why she is so captivated. So many varieties, both herbaceous and tree.

I could have stayed for hours but it's also nice to get back to one's own garden and get stuck in with fresh eyes and inspiration. 

Riccarton is a working farm and not a public garden. I would like to thank Poppy for very kindly showing us her garden and sharing her passion, it was a rare treat.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

A Twelve Month Of The New Garden

The garden a little over 12 months on...
The top is today and the bottom was taken in September last year.

There is not a lot in the budget for the garden with all the restoration works so gaps are filled with cheap and cheerful self sowers that I transplant from one area to another. I have been thickly planting to cut down on the weeds and preserve moisture in little micro-climates. Calendula is a great little filler and very useful in my salve and soap making. The borage will happily take over but it is very easy to tame and rip back when you want to claim back space. 

 The transplanted irises and fruit trees are all doing well but the secret is to make sure their transplant hole is filled with water and keep them moist so that there is reduced risk of root die back. Liquid foliar feeds have been key too. I have black currants and irises under-planted with strawberries next to raspberries and blueberries under the dappled shade of the cherry plums. 

Poppy seeds scattered last autumn are now companions to borders of transplanted self seeding violas and curly leaf parsley.

Even heritage lettuce varieties that were allowed to seed last year have been poked and stuffed into spare holes; ornamental edibles all round and crinkly to the tall and flouncy.

My misters straight rows in sunny spots already running out of room in our expanded beds. Thanks to the new poly-tunnel we have been raising lots of seedlings for planting into warming soils.

In hind sight, perhaps bringing the Tahitian Lime with us was pure folly but time will tell...
The first photo was taken in September last year and the choking lushness on the right is today. The lime tree was placed in this "sheltered" spot against the house out of the worst of the winds. It is hoped that the brick work gardens also act as a bit of a heat bank. I've grown tall lush poppies on either side of the tree and allowed the rhubarb to grow tall and kept the seed heads to protect and shelter the lime from the -5C  frosty mornings. It too will get regular foliar feeds through the spring and summer to encourage hardiness. So far so good. Will it ever bear fruit? Maybe not but as soon as the poppies have flowered, out they'll come and the tree can thrive through the warmth. Given that we are still going down to 3C and getting snow on the mountains I'm in no hurry.

Here is another "before" photo taken in August last year through the spare room window.

The same view today. Unfortunately the hedge on the road side had to go as it was clogging the ditch and causing us a lot of grief with flooding. The Northern Midlands Council have been really responsive and pro-active in dealing with the problem and been really impressive. We've lost a lot of privacy and the loss of a wind break is probably the most regrettable part but in time we will have planting established. On the extreme left is my "herbaceous border" and the next narrow bed is planted with tomatoes and carrots.

September 2016

October 2016

November 2016

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...