The mere mention of a Secret Garden brings all our childhood memories flooding back with a warm fondness. Summers spent building a secret ‘den’ in our parents or grandmother’s garden, hiding away under leaves and branches or having that secret place where you thought no one could find you.
The thought of a secret garden is still magical at any age, it still inspires imagination and intrigue and offers a chance to use your imagination and be creative. Creating a modern day secret garden is not as difficult as you might imagine and injecting a hint of secrecy and mystery to any space is a delight for both the mind and senses.
Creating your own secret garden…
Any size of garden space can add an air of mystery or a hidden secret area. Granted, with larger gardens you can use paths and hedges to divide and screen off hidden areas, but any space can be utilised with the right know how and a splash of imagination.
The first and most important rule of creating any secret garden is to not give your garden’s secrets away at first glance.
Gardens in which you can instantly see what is going on in all areas will soon become boring and give no hint or invite that there is more to explore. So think about hiding a part of your space away and how you can divide up your available space to do so.
If you have a narrow plot of garden such as those typically seen in townhouses, then think how you can divide it into smaller ‘rooms’. This way it makes the sections easier to design and plant and you can even think about adding a different ‘theme’ or look to each one.
To screen off these areas you could use planting techniques such as box hedges. However, if you have not the patience or time to wait for these to grow to the right height, then you could think about using a metal trellis or rattan screen on which things can be planted to grow later.
A nice idea is to place a seating area under a metal archway to create a tranquil seating area around which you could plant climbing fragrant plants such as honeysuckle or jasmine. You could ask a local carpenter or handyman to make you your very own bench with your initials or a few lines of your favourite poem engraved.
Adding unusual objects such as glass baubles, mirrors and whimsical statues of fairies can also draw the eye and present unexpected surprises. Maybe think about placing a false door against a wall to suggest a hidden world beyond or a large mirror with its edges obscure to create an illusion of another garden…
Personalise your space by maybe using items you have collected such as attractive pieces of driftwood or a few hand painted pots or stones. Add a few discreet bird feeders, bright flowers or maybe a water trough to invite butterflies, birds and wildlife to enjoy your secret garden along with you.
About the Author
Gardening guest post written by Matilda Pearce, creating her very own secret garden, tucked behind her garage and it’s roller garage doors.