January proved to be a busy month to kick start the New Year. We attended the Marshalls Regional Road Show in Exeter with Sherborne Garden Angels and had a chance to preview their new and exciting range of garden and driveway paving materials. Despite the very wet and windy drive to Exeter, we had a really nice evening and got the chance to ask the Marshalls experts questions about their new products.
During the first week in January I started a short course on Key Historical Influences on English Garden Design run by fellow Garden Designer Marion Dale. The course will explore what have been the main influences that have shaped English garden style through key periods in history and I am sure I will find this really interesting.
We had the thumbs up from two separate clients to start work on their new garden projects that I designed at the end of last year, fingers crossed the weather stays good for us, but we are still a little way off spring yet!
I found myself reflecting on projects we completed during last year and I definitely saw a desire from clients to create natural and wildlife friendly gardens which I am all for and positively encourage. The natural habitat for our insects is fast being eroded and if we can all do our little bit to create a haven for them, then we will all be a lot better off for it.
A simple wood pile in the corner of the garden, or a homemade insect hotel constructed from some discarded house bricks and some hollow bamboo canes will offer shelter for solitary bees and other insects which in-turn will repay you by pollinating your garden plants and providing a food source for birds and small mammals, including hedgehogs which are sadly in serious decline.
I am sure you will have noticed the amount of new housing developments springing up around our towns and villages. A blank canvass garden can be quite a daunting project to undertake when perhaps all you have to work with is a tiny strip of patio and a patch of lawn, which no doubt masks discarded rubble and stones left behind by the builders!
But don’t despair, I would be more than happy to take a look and come up with some ideas that perhaps you had not thought about or to advise you on what to plant and where.
Next month I am going to talk about Common Problem Areas in the Garden and offer some practical solutions to overcoming them.
Until next time