One side of the Secret Garden wall looked up to the Birch Forest and the Wisteria Colonnade where we had done a lot of work and was shaded by the wonderful elm tree. The other side was really just a dumping ground for garden rubbish and had a very steep slope. Initially it was also dark as a row of Cyprus trees from next door blocked out the sun. These trees got the “Cyprus canker” that caused them to have die-back – they were removed by our neighbor and so much light was let in we knew it was time to continue the path around the wall to join onto “Edna Walling Walk” via “Crabapple Walk”…..
Building the path and the retaining wall was a big job – there was drainage to consider and we wanted to keep some of the banksia trees as the birds loved them (mainly the nuts to crunch on).
Adam from Three Colors Green worked out a plan on the fly with levels – it was a busy day!
Firstly we planted the lavender hedge and some salvias. The color was purple and it looked perfect against the sand colored walls. Then as often happened in making this garden things changed – Adam came across a large tree fern which needed “re-housing” from another job – and soon we had 3 and a fernery emerged. We bought other ferns and the environment (dappled shade) was ideal. We had never been a “fernery” type of gardener since probably the 80″s but it seems just like it was always there. You turn the corner of the Secret garden and there is is – through an “arch” created by the banksia trees.
On the ground we planted Heucheras of many colors, succulents and tiny ferns that grew quickly and spread. Even an orchid!