8 May 2011

Petersham Lodge garden (May 2011)

Another of the local gardens that I go to regularly is at Petersham Lodge.

Petersham is that ill-defined area between Ham (that is clearly defined by its parades of shops, common, churches, avenues and Ham House) and the local town of Richmond upon Thames.

Historical Petersham, as defined by the Conservation Area, is quite small but has more than its fair share of grand buildings dating from the time when Richmond was a country retreat from London and noblemen needed hunting lodges close to Richmond Park.

One of the things that I really like about the garden at Petersham Lodge is that parts of it are almost completely wild and natural.

The orderly paths that take you in to all corners of the garden pass through areas like this where nature is allowed a free hand.

Or at least the convincing appearance of a free hand with just a little discrete interference from the gardeners to gently tame the wilderness and heighten its beauty.

There are a few sculptured features too, but not that many that they dominate or distract from the rest of the garden.

There are a few seats, two or three traditional (Greek/Roman style) statues, a Wendy House and this bridge.

The bridge is in a dark and heavily planted corner of the pond where it is almost hidden by the trees. The attempt to avoid discovery is enhanced by painting the bridge a soft green.

Next to the bridge is the main feature of the garden, the large pond. A classic folly at the far end provides seating and shelter from where you can look leisurely back across the pond and over the lawn to the house. Magic.

These three pictures are just a sampler of what Petersham Lodge has to offer. Elsewhere in the garden you can find a formal lawn, an avenue of trees, a knot garden, colourful beds flower beds, a nursery and an arched pergola.

There are more photographs of Petersham Lodge in my other blog.

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