Written and Photographed by: Julie Trachtenberg, Instructor

This past spring I travelled to Great Britain with the intent of seeing a few significant garden sites.  With a several family members who are equally enthusiastic about landscapes, we set off on a mission over the course of a few days to do it right.  Amongst the verdant lineup was Regent’s Park, Kew Gardens, Sissinghurst, Great Dixter,  the Bloomsbury House Gardens in Sussex, and the Chelsea Garden Show.

A running theme became apparent as the gardens revealed themselves, that being the imposing form of Hedges.  Hedges do many things for a garden – they define, they rule, they create structure, and they create chaos.

They keep the wild and untamed at the gate, encircling the life within to exist with formality and rigor.  But at some point along the journey we were fortunate to have chosen Great Dixter as the last  point of destination of our travels.   Christopher Lloyd broke the British mold of the straight vertical walls and horizontal shorn tops.  Something fantastical occurred in the process.  Leaping squirrels from the tops of hedges, tilting towers, free standing forms with undefined morphologies.

Great Dixter surprises and captures the imagination.