Rebecca Smith - Garden design & consultancy

New Year's Resolutions 2017

I seem to have become one of those people who have a blog yet do not write but sporadically. I set out with good intentions once upon a time but as my work load increased and my free time decreased, the blog posts seem to have waned and then rather pathetically tapered off...

My resolution for 2017 is to write more. And yet, I realise, I am better at not writing. Social media has taught me something in that even when limited to 140 characters, I am not a natural tweeter (if such thing exists) but send me outside with my phone and I will happily take photos of every leaf, dew drop and ray of sun which happens to fall across my kitchen table. My resolution is to make my blog more of a visual diary. An aide memoire of such for what is happening in the garden, in other gardens, what is blooming, what has failed and what I am looking forward to, such as the tiny beginnings of the daffodil bulbs which are beginning to peek out even as I type this in the shrub bank.

The world of full of gardeners, garden designers and horticulturalists (and those who to whom all three of these terms would successfully describe) who can and will tell you how and when to prune your roses, plant your sweet peas, dig up your jerusalem artichokes. I am not that person. But if you want visual reminders that MY roses are being pruned, I am the one to watch. 

And so to start for 2017!

Yesterday we ventured out en famile to RHS Wisley for the last evening of their annual light display. As did much of the rest of the world. And their cold children. That said, it was worth it to see the display:

Wisley Lake, Lighting

We found ourselves at dusk at the edge of the Wisley Lake in the swirling planting designed by Tom Stuart-Smith. I have never seen this planting so late (early?) in the year but, perhaps due to the lack of rain, it was still standing tall and looked wonderful in the last rays of the setting sun as the lights began to glow. 

Tom Stuart-Smith planting, Wisley

I don't  know about you but I think that there is something rather wonderful with these faded greys, buffs, and browns of winter. The cold reflections of the grasses in the lake with the lights made me happy. 

Miscanthus sinensis 'Ferner Osten'

Was there ever a better reason to plant this miscanthus than this photo? Tall, fluffy and not yet falling to bits, this grass looked really lovely with the lights coming through as it got darker. 

Miscanthus sinensis 'Ferner Osten'

It is Miscanthus sinensis 'Ferner Osten' for those who'd like to know...


Crescent Moon over Wisley Lake

The tiniest sliver of a crescent moon hung in the sky as the light slowly faded to the West silhouetting the planting, yet in the other direction, the rosiest light still lit the planting. 

Beech, Sarcoccoca and grasses, Wisley

I love these handsome beech columns with their bases in variegated sarcococca, the scent of which was just beginning to perfume the air. This combines, in my mind, what is successful in design: evergreen, scent, colour, and contrasting texture. It sways in the breeze and makes a rustling noise too. A delight. 

Tall Flower Lights

Tall Flower Lights

Tall Flower Lights

The three photos above show a row of flower lights, which change colour through viewer input. There is a button which can be pressed and then *voila* the flower changes colour. Fun for the children.

Egg Lights

White Flower Lights

These white flowers were my favourite. Simple, elegant and effective. 

Red lights

There is more to see on my instagram

Do take a look. 

Next week I am at West Dean College for an introductory day of Botanical Painting, which I am very excited about. Then back to work with a vengeance with bulding starting at our Cranleigh project and site meetings for the Shamley Green project. 

Happy New Year to you all x


Comments (1)

  1. Frances:
    Sep 03, 2017 at 01:07 PM

    I agree with you. It is difficult to find the time in the modern world, especially with children... I find that I enjoy seeing short posts on twitter with a photo related to the topic I like. I only follow nice sites, nice pictures and once it gets gossipy, full of curse words or any hating-I delete that and move on to positive sites only. This has worked for me so far. I was looking for garden inspiration when I found your blog. Take care and thanks.

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