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  History of the Garden        

Southlands has been developed on a long, narrow sight (365 feet long, 25 feet wide near the house, widening to 35 feet)
It once formed part of the orchard on the estate owned by the aristocratic de Trafford family who had held most of the lands in the borough of Trafford since medieval times. When the garden was purchased in 1990 only one pear tree from this orchard remained in it. Although the blossom is still beautiful, its fruits are small. In summer it is clothed in the climbing rose ‘Wedding Day’.

The garden did contain many other productive fruit trees, providing delicious crops of plums, greengages, apples, pears, cherries and peaches. Some of these trees have been retained. For the most part the garden was laid to grass with little in the way of boundary hedging.

It has taken fifteen years to achieve a garden that we both love and enjoy. Having said this, parts of it are relatively new because we have changed and modified the planting and design of it. We live in a suburban area, where hedges and fences denote the boundaries of every garden. Consequently, we have no landscape to ‘borrow’ in order to give the impression of additional width to ours.
The elongated shape of the site has to some extent dictated the design of it i.e. a series of ‘rooms’ each with its own character and planting.
It contains a Courtyard, Mediterranean garden, a Shade garden linked to the Kitchen Garden by a Gravel walk, Pond Garden and Woodland garden. However, unity has been achieved by limiting the use of hard landscaping materials and by echoing planting combinations and colour schemes throughout the garden.
We garden organically on a sandy loam and believe in feeding the soil rather than the plants.


(Southlands in 1990)
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