‘My Dream Garden’, Heather Russell, 9 March 2018  

Many West Yorkshire Group members have been fortunate to visit the glorious garden belonging to Heather Russell. We visited her garden on our day trip back in July 2012.

She had previously given a talk to the group in October 2010 titled ‘My Garden Changes’ and subsequently given a talk at our biennial conference in May 2011.

This was a welcome return by Heather talking of the changes she has made to her garden at Bolam, Northumberland.

In 2000 Heather began a wild garden over the wall from her beautiful main garden which culminated in a beautiful natural planting of geraniums, cephalaria, amelanchier, tellima, calamagrostis ‘Karl Foerster’, and eryngium giganteum ‘Miss Willmot’.

She made the courageous decision to make a drastic change to what is widely acknowledged one of the best gardens in the north. Since the group visited Heather’s garden she has developed her own ‘Dream Garden’ and she told us about the changes, and showed us the result in this widely anticipated talk.

It was a story of a new grass garden. This is a relatively new area to the garden and, despite being created to be less labour intensive, has real impact.

Heather’s Dry Garden

Heather’s ‘dream garden’ is a successful mix of grasses and perennials, well established within a two-year period and needing remarkably little upkeep. Heather guided us through the process of creating the garden, the plants used, and ongoing maintenance required to create the ‘Dream Garden’.