Destinations Magazine

Out With The Old

By Alternativeeden @markngaz
As Mark blogged about recently, we have a number of plans ahead with the garden and the next on our list is the patio near to the house, we usually refer this as the top patio. This area has been home to a number of potted bamboos (almost 30 different species and cultivars), many of which need dividing and re-potting or planting into the ground - although several are too vigorous to be planted out here!

We have taken the decision that after many years with these bamboos that the time has come for a complete change here, and we have decided to let go of nearly all of these plants. Whilst this may seem like a bit of a dramatic decision we have had great pleasure from collecting and enjoying these plants but our garden is of limited size and so to be able to do something different and enjoy a change we need to allow them to go to new homes. A couple of personal favourites will be kept but the rest are going to friends and family who can give these plants a better home, and in the most part a place in the ground. We decided against putting them on eBay so that we could still gain pleasure from them in the future when visiting friends gardens, and who knows we may even get given the odd division back in the future if we miss certain ones!

Out With The Old

So... how do you get an 8 foot bamboo into the back of a car...

Out With The Old

It's a good job bamboos bend!

We will still have many bamboos in the garden, as we have a number of plants in the ground so it won't be a complete shock! The main makeover will take place next spring, however we need to create some space for a related house project (we will no doubt share some of the end results of this related project inn due course). So what will we do.. well the plan is to completely change the feel of this patio area. I want to link this to the new area through choices of color and materials. This will mean stone, wood, and probably plenty of white. But it's not all change, the existing plants that are in the ground will remain, this includes three bamboos and several palms. Plus a couple of the old potted bamboos will stay to help maintain a screen between us and the neighbours. We want this area to have quite a manicured feel, but clearly with exotic and tropical looking plants, perhaps with hints of a patio area from a tropical hotel...

Out With The Old

Rattan perhaps... This set is aptly named Tresco (photo from

The Furniture Company 247)

Our existing patio furniture will no doubt find a new home, most probably in my parents garden, along with a couple of the bamboos it will almost feel like our garden! We want the new look to this patio to have quite a unified feel, and so the new furniture must help tie this together. I keep looking at the rattan style furniture which I think will work here. We had avoided this style of furniture in the garden previously but we both came to the same conclusion that this would work well in the new design.
In terms of plants the key thing for me will be to ensure the patio area looks good even in January or February, when anything deciduous will be bare of leaves, and any herbaceous plants will be tucked up under ground. In the main I want to stick mostly to evergreen plants, so there will probably be one or two more palms joining the party. 

Out With The Old

The existing patio area as it looked earlier this year.

Many of the other potted plants will be staying, and hopefully will get planted into new beds once the make over is complete. However other than clearing the bamboos off to new homes we won't be doing too much to this area this year. Gaz :-) 

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