Traders: A Pastoral Symphony

>> Friday, September 24, 2010




A musician-turned-nursery his natural passions in the game in its own garden Sussex downland

Graham Gough could have made life easier for himself 12 years ago. Find a place where a new garden to create his own nursery starts, he could have landed on a corner sheltered and deep, fertile topsoil and warm sea breezes.

Instead, he was misled by Merchants, a cottage in Laughton, East Sussex, with a great sense of place and sunsets over the dunes, but also very sticky mud, a total exposure to westerly gales, drought in summer and winter temperatures to-12C to plummet. "In retrospect, I should have done better to look at the history of the bricks in Sussex.

That would at least caught my attention on the clay, "he said, laughing." Especially because just down the road from the garden soil is a fine green sand.

Regarding the wind, we offer our clients a full recovery wig. But on the slopes of two acres he planned to convert into a garden is an important asset. He was bathed in light, ideal for the spread of plants that it intends to develop.

Before going to Merchants, Gough, 53, worked at the now closed Washfield Nursery in Kent, known for its rarefied sneezing and other rare plants. But we decided to branch out on his own, he thought it would be an opportunity to plant pallet exchange.

"Life is all about movement and change. And then, the naturalistic style of planting Dutch led by Piet Oudolf, herbs and perennials, offering a new look at the gardens. I like the combination of art and Plantsmanship.

Gough sketched a design for the area including bed spiral winding around a structural hedge, the soft curves of the landscape beyond to echo, then start the clay "with manure, compost to attack and tons of grain has worked in the top 10 inches.

It was trial and error to see which plants would like, but yew daffodils and even turned up their toes, most grasses and perennial new prospered.

Today's visit in late summer or early autumn, you look down on strips of grass and feathers creamy break in slope. I find it almost impossible to distinguish between different varieties innumerable, but Gough himself raised an expert on easy and we walked, he offers previews.

"Miscanthus 'Yakushima Dwarf', still one of the best compact with lots of golden feathers ... "Julie, this is a new dark Miscanthus stems and leaves a good press ... Miss Silver Sceptre 'elegant leaves, it was held here a seed ... "

Among other grasses, it is clearly one of switch grass American amarum Panicum 'Dewey Blue, "which he praised for his" wide leaf blade, blue-gray and dense heads the annual Pennisetum setaceum, a "brush beautiful flowers and seeds itself here , "and the large Mediterranean mauritanicus Ampelodesmos.

The latter, like a pampas grass refine, he had a great band planted along the garden.

"With the grasses, the attraction is not the color but different textures smoked more," said Gough, in appreciating the beauty of texture. He says he was influenced by his wife, Lucy Goffin, textiles designs.

"I have suggested here on the Downs four years ago in a storm force 10. In turn, Goffin made clothes for the cathedral of Winchester, based on patterns of leaves in the garden.

Gough artistic bent to music. In fact, the first time we met - over for dinner near Great Dixter, presented by the owner, the late Christopher Lloyd - he sang Schubert songs. And in the cockpit during a bite of lunch during my visit, he took up the piano for five minutes, the soup comes to a boil.

After studying at the Guildhall School of Music, he was music his career he did not go Sissing one day in 1983 and was engulfed by her beauty. "That's when my moment of catharsis. I immediately realized that it was plants that I wanted to work."

I do not know if you can describe the plant as music, but there is definitely a lyric in the grass sway and son of flower color of them. Very good in the Dutch style, simple forms, wild and evocative scenes combine into seedheads whey grasslands.

As Blackthorn 'Sanguisorba with pink flowers on wiry stems 4ft track and serotina Leucanthemella end with clouds of white daisies. He also grows a number of asters well. "Asters Until you can prevent mold, we found surprisingly resistant to drought.

Editorials safe 4ft leaders turbinellus a "hybrid" is a beautiful sight, as in the equally large "Vasterival a pale pink, which he and a grass Molinia gray. Triffid weed Purple, lilac and green veronicastrum cannabina Datisca another group was striking.

Closer to the ground, some of wispier by ennials is smart unlike pieces of plants such as beetroot leaves of Sedum 'Purple Emperor', a variant that rose Gough (before coming to the market) and in the shade, a variety of Polypodium ferns, which he rates very highly for their freshness in the fall and winter, and their drought tolerance.

But there are only a handful of South African and Mexican plants in the bed, which seems less to distract from Holland and across the border with the British tradition of eclectic.

"You're right," he said. "It's hard to be disciplined when you love plants. So you have to call my little garden, a confused."

winters have led to losses, especially among his agapanthus but Eucomis pineapple flower, pale pink forms of Nerine and very pink Diascia personata resist.

By the time of my visit there on a good show of sage, a royal blue S patens ("Matisse wanted the color"), which can survive low temperatures than they are given a thick winter mulch, shrubs, flowers deep purple coahuilensis S, which he described in his nursery name as "hardy nonchalantly.

At the end of the garden Gough curved line of the major axis of the frame design to the most beautiful views of the Downs, and the transition to the campaign for the smooth, left a parcel of meadow natural downland, full of Timothy and Misty knapweed, inside the garden.

There was a solitary oak in his field when he started, he was accompanied by other trees, including charms, not good on clay thickness, and the Chinese crab apple Malus Transitional, with white flowers and yellow fruits and autumn leaves, Gough regarding one of the best trees for a small garden.

He also planted trees in sparkling silver leaf to capture light, as willows Salix alba var sericea silver and S 'Blue Streak "(" beautiful against the winter sky ") and the underused snow pear, Pyrus nivalis, which forms part a compact column of gray leaves.

But it is the grass that's really the atmosphere here. Links in the winter, they will present Jacobs and spectral shapes, but they are now at their peak, overlooking the garden Gough calls "an inner glow." Daily Telegraph

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