Barrie’s top gardening tips
• I like a simple layout with straight lines and gentle curves. • To keep the beds uncomplicated, I use a smaller variety of plants and repeat them. In a large garden, it’s preferable to group together plants that do well in your area. • Create garden rooms. There should be a frisson of anticipation and discovery as you move from one room to the next. Each room should have an inviting entrance such as a gate, arch, pillars or a pair of matching shrubs. • There should be a focal point in each room and each room should be enclosed with a fence, hedge, shrubbery or wall. • I choose a limited palette of colours for a garden room and repeat those colours elsewhere to create harmony so that the eye is drawn naturally from one area to the next. And I don’t believe in abrupt colour changes – they impede the flow of the garden. • Regular repeat applications of compost and mulch are vital for successful gardening. Nothing can compare with the beauty of healthy plants! >>
Irises with their strappy grey-green leaves, white ‘Iceberg’ roses and lavender soften a pathway made with flat stones collected on the farm. A yellow ‘Gold Bunny’ climbing rose and white Clematis montana adorn the Wendy house (top left); Barrie says her grandchildren love playing there! A quiet spot (above left) where the tranquillity of the garden can be enjoyed as a whole; plants surrounding the lawn include golden privet, berberis, Prunus cerasifera ‘Nigra’ and Viburnum tinus ‘Lucidum’.