Those that visit the garden have a new surprise. We added an herb garden that is planted in a parterre. The parterre could have been created in any number of ways, with any number of plants. This one was created with small boxwoods in a simple closed X design. The herbs were planted in the triangles. There are two on either side of the “break station” (a pergola where we take our meals outside, but also where I stage the jugs of water and glasses on work days).
When you first enter the property you go through a series of rooms. Gardens are generally made to be seen either from the street or from within. Mine are a little of both. The front rooms are designed to be seen and enjoyed from the outside, but hopefully entice the viewer to want to enter… with a promise of more beyond. There are three rooms, maybe four depending how you count them, that are lined along the street side and sidewalk. Each planted with different kinds of flower beds separated by hedges. There is an axis through them with a bench at the end, enticing those that come through the gate to linger in the last room dubbed the “friendship” room.
There is another axis that pierces the center room, and leads farther back through the property. It takes you into what I call my alleé. It’s a long double row of horn beams, closed on the end, that I’m training into a walled area, that I sometimes like to call my croquet lawn when I feel like being precocious (I have yet to send that invitation to wear white only to a croquet game/luncheon). It doubles as a window garden, that when established, you’ll only see into from the windows of the dining room and the bedroom above it, unless you walk into it. It will be a wall of green from the outside. It’s sweet how it catches the breeze and creates shade.
When you exit the alleé on the other side you enter what was an open space that separated my ornamental gardens from Jim’s farm side, where the property is divided into kitchen garden, animal yard and run, and greenhouse. We had put a pond in this area that was meant to be a tilapia farm until we thought better about how we wanted that to work. I of course insisted it have an eye appeal and so it was edged with brick and a fountain head was added (dubbed the tombstone). The only other thing there was the pergola that provides shade and allows meals and breaks to be enjoyed outside. It was finally tied together with two beds I call the parterre. The pergola at the center with the pond capping the far end.
In the parterre are planted all kinds of herbs I had been using, and some I wanted to start using. My favorite quote from a friend as she was led through this maze was “I don’t know where I am anymore.” I love the idea of friends getting lost in my gardens. But I get lost in them too as fresh ideas lead me to new approaches to plants and food… just like one morning I had pulled a couple fresh tomatoes, and as I passed the oregano I decided to take some a few snips. I went back for a cucumber. Grabbed an additional few snips of chives and parsley. It was the beginning of what we called the hero omelette. I wouldn’t have thought of it, except that the ingredients were just there, to make me think of it as I went by. A new favorite mix for a fresh start in the mornings. I love how the new addition just inspires new ideas and new adventures. You never know what’s lurking just beyond the next corner. I find that lovely.