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Winter scene of seed heads and grasses. Veronicastrum virginicum, Sanguisorba 'Red Thunder', Selinum and Miscanthus 'Kleine Silberspinne'

Winter Wonderland – It’s not all about the flower

Winter scene of seed heads and grasses. Veronicastrum virginicum, Sanguisorba 'Red Thunder', Selinum and Miscanthus 'Kleine Silberspinne'

Think twice about cutting back your faded flower heads in autumn

The summer blooms might feel like a distant memory but it isn’t just about the flower; so you might want to think twice before getting out the loppers.

In our opinion there are many herbaceous plants and grasses that deserve to remain in the garden over the winter; there is nothing worse than staring at large patches of barren earth and longingly awaiting for the return of spring.
Waking up on a frosty morning or after the first snow has fallen, to witness the intricate network of Sanguisorba ‘Red Thunder’ seed heads twinkling in Arctic sunshine or the majestic flower heads of ornamental grasses such as Miscanthus ‘Kleine Silberspinne’ or Calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’ shimmering in a wintry breeze; can truly lift the spirits.
They are fantastic specimen plants and all add an invaluable dimension into what could be a bleak winter scene.
Other worthy plants for winter interest include, Veronicastrum virginicum for their
dramatic and majestic towering spires and Dipsacus fullonum (Teasel).
The Teasel is a magnificent, statuesque addition to the back of a border and is loved by bees when in flower and is invaluable winter fodder for seed loving birds.
Many plants have a lot to offer when they’ve past their blooming best and it’s always good to remind yourself that the beauty of a plant isn’t always about the flower.

Waterwall feature with Ivory quartz cladding in W4 garden

It is always lovely to get feedback from your clients about a garden that you have designed and built.

It is over 2 years ago since we designed and built a family garden in Strand on the Green, Kew.

Recently, we received a lovely email from our clients updating us on how the garden has evolved and telling us how much it has changed the way they use their outdoor space as a family.

Creating a space for children to be active and adventurous whilst maintaining an adult zone can be challenging, especially in a small garden. We remember this project because it made us have to think of clever ways to integrate outdoor storage within the children’s play area without it being an overwhelming presence.

We were also very conscious about designing a garden that met the brief and was achievable to build within the client’s budget.

The garden is terraced so there was a fair bit of landscaping involved. The clients also opted for a planting design and maintenance plan. This we highly recommend as our planting designer can choose the right plants for the right aspect. By doing this the plants have a very good chance of thriving their way into maturity. A planting plan also allows us to know exactly how many plants will be needed.

This project was an award-winning garden, complete with: water wall, new planting, lighting, play den, climb wall, outdoor storage, sandstone steps and patio.

Read what our client wrote:
We really hope that you are both well and the business is thriving. We’ve progressed the garden a little this summer so thought I’d send you a few pic’s for you to see how it’s all looking. The biggest thing is that we finally succumbed to artificial grass!

Strand on the Green - Client photos

We really tried with the real stuff but having had such a soggy winter it was just a muddy patch for a good 5-6 months – which was no fun. The artificial lawn is amazing and has transformed the way that we all use the garden so we are really happy with the decision. The IKEA hanging chair appears to be impossible to get hold of, so we’ve recently bought a circular swing like you get in playgrounds, the boys love it and are constantly climbing on it and spinning round!

Strand on the Green - Client photos

Unbelievably we’ve also only this year bought out garden furniture, and in the recent hot weather added an giant parasol to the patio to give us some much needed shade in the day.

Hearne03

So that’s it, all the extra bits and bobs now complete!

Hope all is well with you

Claire and Stephen