Chatto essex

The reservoir garden, built on debris from the neighbouring farmer’s lake and now looking rather Eighties, is due for a facelift and will become a living catalogue for many of the new plants grown in the nursery.Only the scree garden, near the house and packed full of favourite sedums, sempervivums and alpines, is a disappointment.The result is a colourful delight from summer through autumn.Summing up For goodness sake bring a notebook and a camera!The gravel garden follows the course of a dry river bed, and offers a home to flowering grasses, lavandula, and allums, among many other varieties.

Guardian oaks The whole garden was built from scratch from fallow fields along a backbone of 350-year-old oaks, still the most fabulous occupants in this magical place.Of course, I’ve kept in touch through countless articles and images, and Chatto’s dictum “the right plant in the right place” comes to mind every time I buy something I know won’t grow in my clay garden, however much I love it.Wandering around the garden with nursery manager Dave Ward, I was none the less surprised to see how familiar the layout and planting felt.Chatto’s archives have been donated to the Garden Museum and are being collated by Dr Catherine Horwood. Sitting at the next table in the tea room overlooking the gravel garden, I asked Fernando Gonzalez his opinion.Gonzalez is an installation artist and creator of a Fresh garden at Chelsea this year. His companion, Fern Alder, plantswoman and founder of Full Frontal, a community project advocating the greening of streets, said: “Breathtaking, even in winter.

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