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St Barnabas Road

Howard and Fiona have spent over ten years completely redesigning their town garden near the centre of Cambridge.

Through The Year

GAP Photos/Howard and Fiona Rice

Feature No:   2956 

Qty of Images:    177 


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The garden is now subdivided into compartments, including a formal lawn with herbaceous borders and topiary, a wild garden, a vegetable garden with raised beds and a period style conservatory with species orchids. We wanted to create a garden which looked good all year and also provided a variety of different growing environments for a wide range of plants - for example a formal space with lawn and flowerbeds, a border for perennials, an informal/wild garden where things could be allowed to naturalise and so on; in fact it was really the thought of having enough space to be able to design an enticing garden that led to us buying the house with it's larger than average plot. The garden has really been designed pretty much from scratch - the border and path running down one side are the only remnants of the space which we inherited. We've shaped the lawn, cut and dug the flowerbeds, eradicated all the weeds, put in the clipped box trees - which we transplanted from our previous garden - planted the hawthorn hedges and pleached field maples and created the raised vegetable beds, not to mention designing and building a workshop and summer house and adding a conservatory; although obviously not all at once - the garden has been allowed to evolve over a number of years, and continues to do so. Different parts of the garden come to life depending upon the time of year. The shady side, of the formal area, near the house, looks fabulous in the Spring with purple snakes­head fritillarias, apricot species tulips and pale blue woodland anemones , whilst the sunnier side,with its long border, 'takes off' later in the season firstly with tulips underplanted with forget­me­nots, followed by a range of summer flowering perennials such as deep blue aquilegas and white foxgloves, yellow helianthus and orange­red heleniums, and, then later, grasses and seed­heads. Meanwhile, the wild garden - which looks lovely in Spring and early Summer with firstly naturalised snowdrops, then Narcissus and later wild bluebells ­ sports an abundance of roses in early and mid June, and the vegetable garden a glut of lettuces, French beans and tomatoes,amongst other things, whilst in the Autumn the main focal point of the garden is provided by the rich yellow leaves of the pleached Field Maples which, when the leaves fall in late November, give the garden a sense of structure in the Winter months, along with other elements such as the box trees and formal lawn.



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