Friday, 4 July 2014

Alfriston Clergy House - Sussex

A trip to the countryside revealed a little gem of a house and garden. This place is special as it was the first property to be purchased by the National Trust. The original part of the house dates back to 1350. The gardens however, have changed throughout the years and are a miss-mash of different periods as different inhabitants have altered them to suit there needs.

The gardens are not big or grand and are therefor good inspiration for a family or medium sized garden. They have a relaxed, cottage feel to them; tumbling roses in pastel colours swamp the front of the garden in a mass of gentle scent and flowers. A perennial sweet pea clambers over the flint wall by the doorway. These sweet peas are easy to grow and very vigorous, perfect near a bench as they smell lovely in the warmth of a summer day.

The space is used as a working garden that would have supplied fruit and vegetables for the house. A traditional kitchen garden not only supplies food but looks lovely too! Just remember they take a fair amount of work to maintain but the rewards can be worth it.

Although this garden has a mainly cottage feel to it with soft flowing planting and a kitchen garden, it also has some formality to its layout. This is important when creating this style of garden as many of the plants will die back in the winter leaving the structure as the main point of interest.

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