The past year has seen many changes in the garden, one of the biggest changes comes from our White Garden which has been transformed with the introduction of new focal points in the form of a beautiful, hardwood obelisk and high-backed bench. To compliment these new structures the garden team have planted floriferous, white flowered perennials to the neighbouring borders. The surrounding path has also been improved, having been converted from grass – or rather mud in the winter – to a hard all-weather surface made from crushed gravel.
Earlier this year we caught up with our Head Gardener Dan to see what exactly went in to this new project.
How long did it take to completely revamp the white garden?
We started in autumn 2020 with lots of groundwork and preparation. We dug out the old path to make room for the new one including a nice, deep sub-base, re-jigged things a bit so some of the sight-lines with surrounding features matched up a bit better, cultivated the borders and then re-planted in spring 2021.
We’ve been working hard since fine-tuning the planting, dead-heading, feeding and irrigating to make sure everything gets nicely established.
Why did you do it? What needed changing?
The White Garden had lost its wow factor. The planting was a bit tired and the grass path surrounding it had become very muddy – particularly through the winter – so it was obvious we really to do something more suitable for an ‘all year round’ garden and refresh the planting whilst we were at it.
Where did your inspiration come from?
The inspiration for the White Garden has always come from the brilliant purple beech hedge surrounding it. It’s such a brilliant foil for white, it would be a shame to do anything else with it!
Who worked on the white garden?
Thankfully we had lots of people working on the new White Garden. The Garden Team did a lot of the prep work with contractors helping to install the path.
Our volunteer team were invaluable of course. They were joined on occasion by Angie Reynolds. Angie approached us some time ago looking for an appropriate project in the garden to collaborate on, in memory of her late mother, who had been a long-time visitor to Winterbourne. After much discussion, the White Garden development emerged as the most fitting, so it was lovely that Angie herself was able to get involved and help with the project too.
What time of the year is best to see the White garden?
We’ll be working in the coming years to increase the seasonality in the new White Garden with lots of winter and spring bulb planting already taking place (think snowdrops and miniature white daffs) but it is undoubtedly at its best in high summer.
What do you hope people enjoy most about the new white garden?
I hope people enjoy reflecting on how colour can be used in the garden to create a different atmosphere and effect, and on the beautiful words carved into the high backed bench – where most people will sit to enjoy it – in memory of Angie’s mom.