Monday, June 2, 2008


The Edwardian Garden esthetic was caputured in the art of the likes of Kate Greenaway and Eugene Grasset, such as this plate by Grasset from "The Illuminated Book of Days". Note the use of poppies and lilies, as well as the use of negative space formed by the tree trunks and bushes. Another famous and influential garden designer was Gertrude Jekyll, whose work also informed my own taste. Her designs for long borders and garden rooms is the basis for many of my own plans. I like the traditional cottage garden look as well as the more artistically arranged plantings of herbaceous plants.

There is also something to be said for the feeling of Arts and Crafts motifs, which the garden at Comstock house affords. There is a very large, mature ginko tree at the very front of the garden, whose leaves strongly remind me why they are such a favorite Arts and Crafts motif. The two large Oak trees create wonderful line and negative space when viewed from below, as one must do when walking the garden. The front of the main walkway is bordered by two trees that the neigbors call a privet, but I don't recognize them as such. These trees are a nuisance in being prolifically seed bearing, with many unwanted volunteers appearing everywhere, the lawn included. I'm forever pulling them up from the beds. But, they do have lovely base-branched trunks which also provide line and negative space that I much admire. As I prune trees and shrubs, I attempt to create such line and space, paying as much attention to the trunk and branches as I do to the foliage placement. It will be many years in the making, as such hardwood takes years to grow in the desired patterns.

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