It was a wonderful voyage of discovery finding out about my students (adults); what garden styles they liked, where their favourite gardens to visit were and where in the world they would love to visit given the opportunity...it revealed that gardeners are as diverse as the plants we grow, but that the majority of my gardeners love the modern cottage garden, with an edge of formality thrown in alongside.
Our second session looked at the use of shapes in design; why some shapes combine well whilst others seem chaotic. Unity, harmony, scale, proportion and function were all examined, with students having time to sketch concept plans for their own plot. Homework included measuring their own garden; creating a site survey containing all the important information on soil, light and shade, boundaries, existing planting and the relationship with the house.
Tonight (session 3) will give students the opportunity to start designing their own garden (based on their site survey), explore the different uses of plants in the garden and arm themselves with enough information to bring back a planting list for the last session. I am hopeful that by the end of the course, they will have not only drawn their garden plan (if they want to achieve this) but also developed a planting plan for at least a section of their garden.
There is a waiting list for the next course so do get in touch if you are interested, but be warned, there is a lot of exciting homework to complete if you want to develop your own garden plan by the end of the course!