When life is uncertain we tend to look back to the golden days because we often associate nostalgia with positive feelings.
The themes of nostalgia and vintage have become some of the biggest trends over the past few months – not only in the fashion world but also for interiors.
Vintage style doesn’t just work in your home though – you can extend the look to your garden as well. With selective planting, time-worn furniture and some nostalgic touches it’s easy to create a beautiful old-world garden.
Vintage gardens aren’t defined by any set of rules; rather, a lack of rules and structure seem to characterise them. There is often an air of informality which is associated with organic, curved and irregular forms.
Planting is more free and easy.
Borders are mixed and climbers scramble up and over vertical structures and surfaces.
Use lots of plants, especially bedding plants to give that wonderful vintage feel.
When it comes to plant selection pick ones that are robust and tough as there is lots of competition for space in a vintage cottage garden and don’t forget to add in scented plants like honeysuckle, roses and lavenders.
Also, a vintage garden looks amazing in summer but will have a quiet season in winter so make sure you plant winter and spring bulbs to give colour all year round.
Classic vintage plants include ones that provide a bit of height such as delphiniums, lupins, foxgloves and hollyhocks which are usually scattered through the borders. Roses are also essential – both bush and climbers – and the more highly scented the better.
Try using perennials rather than annuals. Perennials come back each year and are much less work – which is why roses, geraniums and lavender are popular choices. And don’t forget to deadhead – every couple of days in the summer – to keep the garden looking fresh and colourful and to help plants to produce more flowers.
You can also be creative in your choice of containers … pansies in metal pots, geraniums in large teacups and rambling roses in old tin baths or barrels growing up over an arch. Place marigolds and petunias in old vintage patterned jugs or use old metal kettles to plant up lobelia and impatiens.
Whatever style of garden you have, it’s time to sit back and relax a bit – with just a few jobs still to be done when you have a moment!
Here are some top tips for this month from the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society)…
- Check climbers are secure and pest free
- Care for houseplants if away for a few days
- Water containers and new plants if dry but be water-wise
- Deadhead bedding plants to ensure continuous flowering
- Clear algae and weed from ponds and keep topped up
- Give the lawn a quick-acting summer feed
- Harvest soft fruits
- Don’t forget to weed.