Winter berries

2 Written by Lisa on 15th Dec 2017 in Design Tips, Plants

I don’t know about you, but I love foraging for foliage at this time of year.  I’m lucky now that we have holly and ivy in the garden, the hedgerows are full of hazel and the woodland up the hill has an abundance of pine cones.  Now that the snow has disappeared, I’ll be cutting some holly at the weekend for Christmas decorations.

It’s also a reminder that winter gardens can really be quite fabulous.  Berries not only give interest and colour in the winter, but they also provide much needed food for the birds.

I planted a native hedge last week which was specifically designed to support the birds.  It included hawthorn, blackthorn and field maple of course, but also June berry (Amelanchier), bird cherry, wild cherry and wild privet.  I know it’s going to look a picture in spring as well as winter, once it’s established properly and everything blossoms well.

In our garden we have a Malus x robusta ‘Red Sentinel’ (crab apple) which really is one of my favourite small trees.  The fruit stays throughout the winter until the point when the blackbirds can resist no longer and they eat the lot over the course of a couple of days.

It really gives the best of both worlds, interest pretty much all year round and food for the birds right at the end of winter when most other berried plants have been exhausted.

Rather annoyingly I didn’t get around to taking pictures when the snow was on the branches too, but these were taken today whilst the sun was lighting up the valley behind.

If you only have space for one tree in your garden then it needs to work hard for its space.  Trees that have blossom, good foliage that colours in autumn, berries in winter and/or nice bark, easily earn their space in any garden. There are plenty to choose from, but I think the crab apple is one of my favourites.


Images: Lisa Cox

Wild flowers in the Swiss Alps

0 Written by Lisa on 29th Jun 2017 in Inspiration, Plants

We went to the Swiss Alps last weekend for a few days.  we’ve never been to Switzerland before and my Stepson is living there are the moment so we thought, why not? Read more

Snowdrop season is just around the corner

0 Written by Lisa on 11th Jan 2017 in Inspiration, Plants

January is always a long month, especially after the festivities of Christmas, but it won’t be long until the snowdrops start to emerge and I always think their arrival promises that spring isn’t that far around the corner. Read more

Time to be thinking about your spring bulbs

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Sep 2016 in Plants

Golden narcissus at RHS Garden Wisley Lisa Cox

Bulb planting is one of my least favourite tasks, I think perhaps because it takes quite a bit of effort and you have to wait a long time before you get to reap the rewards.  Even thinking about the future displays of spring flowers doesn’t always get me fully motivated! Read more

A visit to Jekka’s Herb Farm sparked a horticultural debate

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Aug 2016 in Inspiration, Plants

Jekka's Herb beds Lisa Cox Garden Designs

A couple of weeks ago I visited Jekka’s Herb Farm with the Garden Media Guild.  What an inspiring lady Jekka is, so passionate about what she does and about spreading the word about the benefits of herbs to our health and well being. Read more

RHS Chelsea 2016 – The plants of the show

0 Written by Lisa on 28th May 2016 in Inspiration, Plants

Foxgloves in Brewin Dolphin Garden RHS Chelsea 2016

It’s the final day of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2016 and I wanted to round off my week of blog posts with some of the plants that shone out at the show. Read more

Choosing plants that fit with their surroundings

0 Written by Lisa on 8th Mar 2016 in Plants

Fallas festival Valencia Lisa Cox Designs

I’ve just returned from a weekend in Valencia. A really great City that was just warming up for their annual festival “Fallas” which takes place in 2 weeks.  We experienced lots of firecrackers (a reminder of my days in Greece at Easter) and a daily afternoon firework display in broad daylight, which felt a little bizarre! Read more

Protecting our precious trees

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Feb 2016 in Design Tips, Plants

Oak tree from the wood floor taken with wide angle lense by Lisa Cox

I’m currently working on a project where we have few trees on site that are subject to a Tree Protection Order (TPO).  Obviously I need to be absolutely sure that I create the new garden in a way that will ensure that the trees aren’t damaged so I’ve been taking advice from a professional arborist to ensure that we’re doing things right. Read more

Low hedges – a few alternatives to Box

4 Written by Lisa on 6th Oct 2015 in Plants

Box topiary and stone bench in Box, Wiltshire

You may or may not have heard that there’s been an outbreak of box tree caterpillar in London and some of the Home Counties. The caterpillars eat the leaves and produce webbing over their feeding area which can eventually cause the plants to die. Read more

It’s bulb planting time!

0 Written by Lisa on 1st Oct 2015 in Design Tips, Plants

Golden narcissus at RHS Garden Wisley Lisa Cox

I’ve just returned from Surrey after 5 long days planting my project in Weybridge.  No photos yet I’m afraid as it wasn’t looking very photogenic without the lawn and with the protective boards down on the terrace.  But I’ll be popping back at the end of October armed with my camera so I’ll share the pictures with you as soon as I can. Read more

Lisa Cox Welcome

I specialise in helping families to turn their gardens into an extension of their home and into a space that can be used and enjoyed all year round.

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