Making a Front Garden

Transforming Hillary’s front garden

Back in early May I mentioned that I was making big changes out front, well, I never did say it was to our garden!

Hillary (3)

Perhaps I was bigging it up a bit, referring to what I had been up to as some major project, I mean, it isn’t exactly Alan Titchmarsh stuff.

Its all about our neighbours garden

Anyway, hidden below the large swathe of lawn was masses of tree roots and builders rubble. Preparation work took me a little longer than expected, but hey, my speedy Gonzales days are over.

Hillary’s garden extends forward from our front garden, although it was always kept very tidy it was rather uninspiring.

Hillary (4)

Getting back to how this all came about, well Hillary had been telling me back in April that her gardener was unwell and would not be able to look after her garden this season.

Hillary herself has been poorly and was just getting over a recent illness  which has kind of knocked the stuffing out of her.

I suggested that when I was cutting our front grass I would also do hers.

We kind of got around to talking about her garden being in need of a makeover. I was thinking  that it would be nice to do something for someone for a change and if she  were to buy the plants, I would do the work..

Hillarys garden (2)

Mid April I got stuck in, cut out a border extending from the end of our garden to more than half way down our neighbours.

I then with great difficulty due to tree roots, cut out three circular borders.

Hillarys garden (4)

Couple of weeks later, ground prepared, top soil and compost added to improve the clay soil.   Planting has started.

Hillarys garden July 15th (5)

Mid July and pleased to say all the plants have taken.

Hillarys garden July 15th (7)

Most of the edging border would only take annuals owing to the very shallow depth of soil. Come Autumn I intend to replant this with Spring flowering Primula.

Hillarys garden July 15th (10)

Hillarys garden measures, 45ft x 21ft. Our own garden front and back is never complete, we are forever making changes even on the times when we think we have it perfect.

Its a bit different doing someone else’s, you cant exactly say after  spending a lot of money on plants, I think it may have looked better with something else in place of so and so.

Well, fortunately, all concerned seem to be happy with the result.

List of plants used

Yew (taxus baccata) topiary pyramids

Buxus (Box) Lollipops

Standard Holly Silver van toll Hillarys garden July 15th (13) - Copy

Sorbus (rowan) Joseph rock

HT Rose Claret

Nepeta nervosa blue moon( catmint)

Astrantia Venice

Leucanthemum snow lady

Heuchera Paris

Veronica Ulster blue

Aruncus aethusifolius

Erica carnea myretoun ruby

English Lavender

Max Frei hardy geranium

Bedding  cosmos, begonia semperflorens, lobelia, allysum

Hillarys garden July 15th (15)

There it is then, everyone happy, did I mention,  the view from our window has improved dramatically.

Front garden (16)

Our front garden with Hillary’s at the far end.

© 2016, Alistair. All rights reserved.

25 thoughts on “Making a Front Garden

  1. What a lovely thing to do for your neighbor. The planting looks fabulous, and you get to enjoy it also from your window.. I hope you don;t mind me reading your garden blog.. I came across you from Helene Taylor who I enjoy following, Helene has given me so great tips for planting in my own garden.

  2. What a marvelous thing! Through your generous nature you’ve done a kind thing for your neighbor while also beautifying your own world. Great job.

    Debra

  3. What a kind thoughtful neighbour you are Alistair. I’ll bet both gardens are the talk of the town now. I think gardeners make great neighbours and you’ve proved my theory correct.
    Angie recently posted..Salvia Kate Glen

  4. Hello Alistair, I can definitely see your style in your neighbour’s garden. I really like the combined photo at the end showing the two front gardens together, it really shows that the whole is more than the sum of the parts. I hope both you and Hillary are very satisfied and happy with the results!

    1. Hi Sunil, Its one thing constantly trying to make improvements to your own garden. Not so sure if I welcome these thoughts of needing to make improvements to another.

        1. Funny, I was just thinking yesterday that when I tell Hillary of the latest developments she is going to think just as you did. For that matter so will everyone else around. Ah well, its not such a big deal, but its hard to believe, this latest opportunity only arose 10 days ago.

    1. Hi Pam, its not so long ago I was telling Hillary not to concern herself with maintenance as I would keep it looking good. You just never know whats around the corner.

  5. Hello Alistair, nice job you have done, and a great selection of plants you chose. I have done something similar where I used to live before and it is so satisfying to see the improvements – especially when you, like me were watching the neighbouring garden every day. I hope someone will be able to take care of your work for the future? In my case the neighbour died shortly afterwards after having been ill for many years, new people moved in and they didn’t want to take care of the garden but didn’t want any help either. Needless to say I felt rather sad looking over the low fence at the wilting, dying garden I spent 5 months creating and which I had put 95 plants of mine into. It’s true as you say; you never know what’s around the corner.
    Helene recently posted..Summer weather in London

  6. Oh, I would love to have you as my neighbor! Great job, Alistair! I understand what a challenge is to deal with tree roots – I have the same problem in my own garden. It limits the variety of plants we can use and it stunts their growth. Anyway, you’ve done an excellent job!

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