Discover the Secret of a Good Border

As you see from the picture above this all about herbaceous borders and what are the various elements that combine to make a perfect planting. The examples that are discussed below come from several large gardens in Cheshire, England. While the average gardener will not be planting on this scale, the general principles can be applied to any border. This article by Helen Johnstone which I found on her Patient Gardener website explains all.

Double Herbaceous borders, Arley Hall, CheshireSo what makes a good border these days? A thought that dogged me on my recent visit to gardens predominantly in Cheshire. And what do we mean by border? Is a good border classed as a typical herbaceous border as seen at Arley Hall or has that doyenne of the Victorian grand garden lost its edge and been replaced with more relaxed and mixed planting?
Bluebell Cottage Garden, Cheshire

This border, well large square island bed, at Bluebell Cottage has almost the same range of plants as the famous double borders at Arley Hall and yet for me they have more vibrancy and make my heart sing more. But what is it about the second border that speaks to me ? again and again this came up over the trip.? The Arley Hall borders are historic, allegedly the oldest double herbaceous borders in the country but they haven?t stood still in time as new introductions have come along the planting is refreshed. However, unlike the Bluebell Cottage plants the Arley Hall plants are staked within an inch of their lives.? Don?t get me wrong the staking is unobtrusive but it is there and the plants are standing to attention, all neat and tidy.? By contrast Bluebell Cottage has limited staking, if any, in fact the owner, Sue Beesly, advocates moving borders into the centre of the garden as the plant grow more upright away from shading fences, hedges and trees.? Maybe the freer movement of the plants is what appeals?

See more at the Patient Gardener