Skip navigation

Can we Help?

If you have any questions, just let us know. Fill in your details below and we'll get back to you.

Contact Form

The Rock Garden and the Garden Room

As we approach the end of the year, the majority of the newspaper columns are filled with that perennial mixture of predictions regarding everything from spring fashion and next year's big food trends, all the way down to which bands will get their big break and whether the knee-high sock is due to make a comeback.

The trends discussed much less widely, however, are those to do with your home. Even for those with an interest, a lot of the articles deal with interior design and colour palates - but what about your exterior design? The gardens of your home are an essential part of its make-up and what give it everything from kerbside appeal to a relaxing place for a barbecue.

One big prediction for 2017 is the return of the rock garden. They were a firm favourite in the post-Victorian era, where keen gardeners were fascinated by the plants and animals that thrive in less fertile ground, such as harsh, weather-beaten mountains. Although they've fallen out of favour, in a recent article one young garden designer believes that they were overdone. A number of rock gardens became ostentatious in design, leaving them looking 'absurdly imposed' in a domestic setting; there's no reason, however, that a rock garden cannot bring a sense of the wild and natural to the home.

The solution is to avoid recreating a perfect replica of the Alpine setting, and go for a gravel garden. The number of plants that thrive in the British weather and are beloved by gardeners also love a stony outcrop. Everything from irises, poppies, cornflowers, torch lilies, yuccas and heathers, as well as any number of grasses can create a very impressive scene.

Any number of bulb plants also love an open, free-draining soil and can be planted and cared for in their first year, but return year after year to create a reliable and beautiful display.

The appeal of the visually stunning rocky garden makes even more sense when imagined from the vantage point of the Garden Spaces room. Not only do you feel connected with the garden in a much more meaningful way than simply viewing it from the rest of the house, but this kind of 'dry' gardening also tends to be much more efficient in terms of maintenance, allowing you to spend more time viewing your handiwork rather than tending to plants.

It's much easier to create an attractive display with a few carefully chosen accent plants that highlight themselves against the stony background, rather than an all-over display that can become somewhat overwhelming. Tending for a few carefully chosen plants also gives them a better life-cycle, allowing you to spend a little bit more time enjoying your garden from your extremely comfortable garden room with a well-earned glass or cup of something tasty!

Date: 02/12/2016 | Author: Roger Hedges