I have read many gardening books, and followed many gardening gurus .There is a spectrum between Carol Bruce's disciplined and methodical ways and Mirabel Osler (author of A Gentle Plea For Chaos). I vary along that spectrum from year to year and even at times, from day to day! Carol Bruce's approach inspired me when I was feeling a bit downhearted at the state my garden had got into. 'Roll up your sleeves, get your hands dirty and see what you can do.' Garden design is an art and a brilliant subject and I nevver tire of it. There is always something to learn.
The bench and chair are now stained a lovely grey (Cuprinl Silver Birch) and the magenta geranium Ann Folkard looks wonderful beside it (sorry I can't find the photograph), and I have just bought some roses called Timeless Purple which I think will look sumptuous and smell divine. I also plan to bring on two Chocolate Cosmos for their rich colour and amazing perfume.
That's the dream, meanwhile the reality is that there are currenly at least 11 different plants growing in the space around the bench, and as you can see above, the chair is drowning in alchemilla mollis. The clematis is sagging and the pots are broken....
Sleeves rollled up and getting hands dirty!