Thursday 11 June 2015

National Gardens Scheme – Little Lodge

I can't believe it has taken me half a year to visit my first National Gardens Scheme (NGS) of the 2015 season. A combination of bad weather and conflicting events has meant that garden openings have passed me by. It was while we were passing through Thames Ditton that I saw the familiar yellow NGS signs advertising a garden opening we could go to later in the week.
I'll make no bones about it but Thames Ditton is an affluent area. Sitting just over the Surrey border it has big houses and mature gardens. It also benefits from the warmth of its situation as a commuter village to the south west of London. This is obvious as you step into the back garden and see the figs growing up the side of the house.
To fit in the main house the greenhouse is a modern green colour but Victorian in styling.
Whether your garden is big or small there's also room for some pots. A great choice for pots are succulents as they can deal with dry conditions but they certainly got a soaking that morning.
One the impressive features of this garden was the size of the borders. They just seemed to go back and back. Every little bit of space is covered and packed thoroughly with plants. Look at the deep blue of that iris!
One of great things about visiting private gardens is seeing unusual plants and exactly how they are positioned. Any takers on what this blue flower is?
With such a large garden to maintain one of the important areas tucked away are the compost bins. Homemade and full of lovely organic matter.
I can't deny it but the part of the garden that really wowed me was the fruit and vegetable garden. You start off seeing gooseberries already plump and currants dipping down ready to be ripened. Standing proud above their spiky leaves are globe artichokes.
Once you turn the corner of the vegetable garden you are struck by the parterre styling of it. Each of the raised beds are surrounded by box. Have you ever seen such a formal and attractive growing garden? On each corner is something else I hadn't seen before – standard gooseberry bushes.
Each bed is filled with a variety of produce from potatoes to beans with brightly stalked chard and salad leaves.
Between the beds the connecting path is made from bricks. A lot of time and effort has gone into laying out this garden but it has stood the test of time and seems to be producing great results. With that last look the rain started to come down and it was time to leave.



  1. This is probably my dream garden, the large borders, the beautiful (and very expensive) greenhouse and the potager. Sigh. Oh to be rich! :) The blue flower looks like a nerine to me.

  2. It may have taken half a year to get there, but it certainly looks like it was worth the wait!
    This is an absolutely gorgeous garden, love the fruit and veggie garden, looks so well laid out.

  3. Oh my this is beautiful, a dream garden for me too, like Happy Homebird. I don't know what the blue flower is but someone shared an app with me this week that can take a photo of a flower and it will identify it - I 8think* it's IdentiPlante. Might be worth a go!

    That's one garden that's worth the wait!
    Thanks for joining in again mon jibbery jabbery one x

  4. I now have greenhouse envy, my hubby wants to buy a modern one but I love the Victorian style but they are just way to pricey

  5. Happy sigh, that is such a wonderful garden. I would love to have a garden like that, everything about it is lovely. The national garden scheme is great isn't it to find these local gems.

  6. Oh, wow! I would love to have a garden like this, just fabulous. Thank you for sharing x

  7. Beautiful garden and greenhouse :) Pots have become quite a feature in our garden. It's all paved so we put in a couple of raised beds and there are lots of pots dotted around the garden, they make a big difference.

  8. wow that garden looks expensive and a full time job, i love the little pots with the succulents

  9. Ha ha - I actually beat you to visiting a NGS garden this year even though I live in France - I was back in the UK earlier this year and visited a friend who is head gardener at a garden that happened to be having an Open weekend when I visited. I do love the veg garden at Little Lodge - the brick paths are an excellent idea but I am glad I have not got the job of keeping those box hedges clipped!


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