Visited English gardens, now want to revise my own
Has this happened to any of you? You travel to another country, see their gardens, then get ideas of how to change your own.
We just spent a few days seeing some of those perfect and famous gardens in England, and now we're trying to figure out what we can do to our own garden beds and landscapes that will bring them to such beauty.
Of course, having the Sissinghurst microclimate would help. And getting several dozen knowledgeable volunteers to keep them weed-free and deadheaded would also be ideal. But without those conditions, what can we do to make our gardens better? We're already weeding, manuring, watering etc etc.
My latest thought is: make more space for each plant instead of crowding them. Vary plant heights within a bed for greater visual interest. Have more of each kind of plant in a clump, for a better look from a distance. Work on color schemes but don't get obsessive about it. Look around one's neighborhood to find out what specific plants and varieties do really well. Try not to push the zone limit (my constant mistake).
Those Eng. gardens all have greenhouses and other structures to raise their own seedlings. I suspect that if I did the same (sans greenhouse; maybe using grow-lights indoors), the baby plants would do better than the ones I buy at garden centers. They also all have 8-10 ft. high brick walls that are used to grow fig trees, clematis, roses and espaliered fruit trees, on the south face.
The other gardening aspect they have is, lots of extra acres to control views and outside sounds (motorcycles, for instance). So, ha ha, I need 20 extra acres, 1 -- no, make it 2-- greenhouses, high brick walls, greater understanding of each plant's potential, and maybe 1 -- no, make it 2 -- good-looking male garden assistants.
How are the rest of you facing the problems of famous garden visits followed by garden envy?