The Cutting Garden

We want a cutting garden, we have always loved flowers around the house and to this end as we have cleared the garden back towards the house we have assigned parts of the garden to do certain things for us. The final part of this jigsaw has been the cutting garden.

Lupins waited 2 years to get into the cutting garden.

Some annuals and perennials 2012.

The final fifty foot to the house, which leads down to the cloister has been on hold as we have used it as a makeshift builders yard, a spaghetti squash patch, a wood pile and finally stone cairns. I flatter myself that these cairns were built with any attention to form or beauty, but it is better than saying a slag heap of stone. The problem with the lower garden is the lower wall and the lower steps to the cloister. We have plans to dig this out and therefore we are nervous about planting anything permanent until we can afford to dig out or more importantly, get enough bodies just to help us dig it out and stack all the stone. All that stone has a purpose, we need to rebuild the retaining wall that holds back the garden from the kitchen. Though we always say our vegetables and flowers have less air miles than most, we don't literally want to be gardening in the kitchen sink.

Helianthus in flower 2012.

A small bunch of flowers from an infant cutting garden.

We know the cutting garden will be bordered by espalier pears and fan cherries. We want fan cherries because at Drovers we did have a cherry tree and it grew big, harvesting was a problem and so were the birds. At least with a fan tree we can net it and keep it under control. We may even have step over apples by the path but nothing is set in stone until the stone is moved. We do want a rose garden surrounding a sitting area but for the rest of the plot we have opted to try our hand at annuals, bulbs and rhizomes  with a few good looking perennials thrown in for structure, including lychnis and common fennel. Common fennel is a great herb to cut with flowers and is almost as ethereal as ammi majus. Though we want to change the cutting garden each year, depending on tastes or needs but we do need permanent plants and structure in there. These plants are at the moment tucked in a corner bed waiting to be dotted through. We got our idea for a cutting garden from the wonderful flower garden at Heligan. We delighted in how this changed each year and how it was set out in rows. We want to do the same, allowing the rows to cascade down the hillside punctuated by drifts of perennials, herbs and fruit. There are even plans to have some purple raspberries somewhere in the mix. The idea is to create a garden that you can sit in, eat in and more importantly cut some flowers from on the way back from raiding the potager, which is the next garden along.

A sign of things to come? Our first cuttings 2012.