Great Dixter: Website
Known for its long border, succession planting, and with a huge range of plants including bulbs, herbaceous perennials, mature trees, shrubs, topiary, a tropical garden, meadows and much more, Great Dixer House was the home of gardener, and garden writer Christopher Lloyd.
Under the stewardship of Fergus Garret and Great Dixter Charitable Trust, this great house and garden has the benefit of being privately run, so they don’t have to constrictions or structures imposed on them like many other nationally run historic gardens. This allows them to continue to develop and modify the garden as they chose, rather than being constricted to the original plants and layout.
I enjoyed this garden for many reasons – the gardeners were friendly, the garden was large, but not overwhelming, and their ideas on succession planting, grouping containers, and interplanting were something we all could take home with us and apply in our own gardens.
I am succession planter myself ( I have now just finished my 4th year of always having flowers going in the garden!), and it was nice to learn a few new techniques, and plants that are particularly suited to this type of planting. It was also nice to hear that they did what I did – if the plant is past its best, out it comes, and is replaced with something in season. It’s not the cheapest way to do things, but does give the best result, and when I’m spoiled with the Columbia Road Flower Market, it’s actually not that pricy!
The house itself is a combination of mid-15th century great hall, a yeoman house moved from another location, and the third links the buildings together. There are also amazing great barn, and a Oast house plus several outlying education buildings, offices, a plant nursery, gift shop and more.
We were lucky to go before the garden was opened, and were treated to a great lecture, tour, and informative titbits as we were shown around. Thanks to all the staff, and Naomi of Out Of My Shed for arranging this for us!
There are some great blogs below that probably give a better description than I can (I’m far too factual a writer!), and take a look at my pics – yes, it’s early in the year, but you can see the potential.
Definitely worth a visit, and I’ll be coming back this summer to see it in full glory.