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Clearing away the cobwebs: rediscovering a garden

The beauty of gardening and garden design is that no two jobs are the same. Not only is each space, location, climate and growing conditions slightly different, the origin of each garden also varies greatly. By this I mean that creating a garden isn’t always from scratch. In fact, gardens rarely start with a completely blank canvas; there is often a mature tree or hedge that needs to be sympathetically incorporated into the design.

Of course, the ultimate example of this is undertaking a full restoration project. A garden initially conceived over 100 years ago with trees that are older than any living person on this planet. With it comes a succession of people who have been inspired and contributed to its overall vision. The excitement of starting on a new project like this is thrilling and foreboding; what treasures will we find? can we unearth and improve what others have done before us? will we do justice to the vision of the garden’s creator?

A mature confier has gradually eaten away at the driveway over the years, making it difficult for vehicles to pass.
Lifting the lower branches lets in the light and shows off the curve of the drive.
What is this lovely large Magnolia hiding?
Removing lower branches reveals beautiful architecture, a statue in an alcove and some nice shrubs including Skimmia japonica and Euonymous fortunei ‘Silver Queen’.
This walkway is overgrown full of Carex pendula and suckering shrubs.
A bit of digging, pruning & tying in opens up the space and shows off the pencil Taxus baccata.

Restoration, by definition, is the “restitution of something taken away or lost” and is so important before things decay so far that they cannot ever be rediscovered. It is a long process that requires imagination, foresight and lots of resources. The best bit is that we can benefit from the imagination and foresight of its creators all those years ago and hope that in another 100 years time, new generations will appreciate what we have done too.

Gardens Restore our Wellbeing

Happy New Year to you all, and a massive thank you to everyone who follows Applewhite Garden Design on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

We are doing something a bit different this year…

At the beginning of 2018, Emmy and I explored the idea of creating a garden in Grantham Hospital. I’m sure you will agree, our hospital grounds are gloomy, depressing and uninviting and in much need of some TLC.

Naively we thought we could draw up a design, employ a contractor and hey presto! Ward 6 would have a garden…

It didn’t quite work like that. Understandably the NHS has a ton of protocol and red tape to wade through, with health and safety issues at the forefront. However, after a lot of perseverance we should have the go-ahead to start the project within a few months.

Having received so much positive feedback about the concept we decided to roll the idea out to all Lincolnshire hospitals. In order to facilitate this we need to raise substantial funds. Consequently we have set up the charity G.R.O.W. Gardens Restore Our Wellbeing.

Applewhite Garden Design has completed the pioneering design, but we need to raise money to pay for the groundworks, landscaping and materials.

The bank account should be set up by the end of February so we can start raising funds after that.

If any of you have groups, clubs or gatherings that you would like us to talk to, we would very much welcome the opportunity to explain the charity and the progress we are making.

Visit growcharity.co.uk and follow @GROW_charity to keep up to date with the latest developments. Join us in helping to make a difference.