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perennials, blue flowers, garden, design
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You need this in your perennial border.


Gardening jobs are just like any other job, sometimes they can seem very daunting. Just where to start? What is more daunting than starting with a weed filled field!

The Challenge
The task was to transform this wilderness into an attractive, natural looking landscape. In the distance you can see a number of rambling, overgrown hawthorns with a tree growing through them. These hid a beautiful view of trees and open fields.


Before - a real jungle
 
After - part of the countryside

Designing the Garden
We wanted the finished garden to look like an extension of the surrounding landscape. The most distinctive existing feature was an old lamppost. The client wanted it to stay but felt it needed new life.

A natural looking pond with cascade was added under the lamppost to add interest. Since the lamp is lit at night the client could benefit from this feature at any time.

The overgrown hawthorn made the garden dark, so we decided that it would be best cut down to about three feet high and made it into a hedge. This allows much more light into the garden, which is perfect for the border plants we wanted to use. It also opens up the stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

We used an informal, curved patio leading to a lawn. The overall effect is a garden that draws charm from its country setting.


Construction
The first job was to clear all those weeds! There were three options: hand weeding, removing the top couple of inches of soil by skimming them off with a spade, or using a weed killer.

Hand weeding is very time consuming and labour intensive, and we did not want to lose topsoil from the garden, so we decided to use a glyphosphate chemical weed killer. This is a sensitive issue and you have to be aware of the need to be sparing with the use of chemicals. This particular type is sprayed on and absorbed by the vegetation but is neutralised on contact with the soil.


Tips from the Design Team
  • Do not to use weed killer spray if conditions are windy. You may risk damaging precious plants.

  • Be careful where you walk after spraying. Weed killer on the soles of your boots can easily rub off as you cross your prized lawn. Days later you will find your footsteps reappearing as patches of scorched and withered grass. Believe me - we speak from experience!



 

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