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a mature Lutyens country garden

Complete planting design | Ilkley, Yorkshire

The Brief

The client wished to replace the planting in all the borders in two specific areas: the sunken garden and the terraced lawns. The existing planting lacked impact and had morphed into greens and purples (see before images) and the client was keen to have colourful impact during the summer months.

The replanting would be implemented in two phases according the two distinct areas. 

The Finished Planting


Upper terraces, planting includes Crocosmia Lucifer, Buddleia, Achillea, Rudbeckia, Roses & Heuchera

Carex elata Aurea elegantly frame the pond with Uncinia rubra and Geum rivale.

Winter interest includes Cornus Midwinter Fire, Helleborus and Viburnum Eve Price.

Colour display in raised beds include: Heleniums, Kniphofia, Nepeta, Potentilla and Geraniums with Miscanthus Morning Light for structure.

The Design

Phase 1 – replanting the sunken garden

Providing impact in relatively narrow borders in front of the high yew hedges was a challenge, as well as improving the soil which was heavy clay and rather stony. 

A maintenance strip behind the borders was retained so that the hedges could be trimmed and form a neat backdrop for the summer flowering plants.

The planting along the rill was simplified so that the view of this feature and the pond and rill could be enjoyed with less distraction from planting.  The plants selected were chosen to enhance the rill and the relaxed feeling of the water.

The Design

Phase 2 – replanting the upper terrace

The borders around the lawn were simplified.  A spectacular range of plants were included to provide a riot of colour in the summer.  The client wished to avoid more evergreens in the borders.  Structural planting was achieved through selected shrubs.

Melissa continued to maintain the plants in the redesigned borders for 4 years after planting.  After this time, maintenance resumed with the employed gardener.

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