Private Garden. For visits and more information please contact … etc
This sign doesn’t do justice to the glories which are contained within its walls! Walking the paths, every sense is assaulted with sights, sounds, smells, tastes, colours, textures. Mint, pepper and citrus, all come together. Some plants in flower, some in fruit, some shoots barely showing through the ground. The mind is overwhelmed by the diversity. Try to do one thing at a time they say – this garden does 500 things at once. It must be a female garden! All plants are working in harmony and i beneficial relationships. There is a technical academic term for this, but words from the imaginative and art do it far more justice than a bland technical term could ever encompass. It is truly a garden rather than a wilderness as it is cultivated. Every plant have been placed intentionally to a design, yet there is an element of the unpredictable natural about it. Plants are allowed to ‘do their own thing’ as it were. They are given the space, nutrient and light to be as they were intended. If a plant wants to, and is able to move, it will! Not something most garden designs or gardeners would put up with. Complaints of low yields, poor growth might follow. Plants that can move, go where the nutrient levels are best, then they truly flourish. Raspberries move around if allowed the space, not something the traditional fruit border would allow. Each plant in this garden has something individual and wonderful to offer. Most can be eaten, but all are there for a specific purpose. Perhaps for bees, or to fix nitrogen and other nutrients. On first glance it is perhaps a place of disorder and chaos, yet on closer inspection it is a highly ordered system, a beautiful creative space allowing plants to flourish as close to a natural state as possible, yet still giving a good crop of useful products. We can learn so much from this way of growing, thinking and being. It is on the fringe of its academic sphere, yet in all probability a true pioneer needs to be on the edge. To embrace this thinking requires an important step, one which will not be taken easily by many people because it requires dying to an old way of being and following a new path, a path which opens up into beauty and wonder. It is not the following of the way which is the hard task, it is the leaving behind and letting go. Until we have experienced the ‘fruit’ there is little to entice us away.
You can visit the Forest Garden in Dartington, Devon, or go to www.agroforestry.co.uk