Hodges Barn

  • hodgesbarn

Garden Category: South Midlands Gardens

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  • The garden ‘bones’ at Hodges Barn were laid out in the 1930’s and though halted in the early years of the Second World War, were continued by Italian prisoners of war waiting to be repatriated home in 1946. Their influence in the design of the garden is apparent in the Italianate detail of walls and terraces. The present owner and her husband worked very hard indeed to bring the garden to its present beautiful and immaculate state. There are subtle tapestry hedges backing masses of summer flowering perennials, with old-fashioned roses draping and falling through the whole. Impeccable lawns sweep down to a pond and water-garden where cool spreading arms of leafy trees reach out to the surrounding countryside bringing into the garden the fields of the Cotswolds. Behind the house, lavender edged paths lead to the neatly laid out vegetable plots and espaliered fruits of summer. This is a large garden – 6 acres surrounding a converted 15th-century columbarium – all intensively planted. The terraces, courtyards and gardens are divided into rooms (surrounded either by walls or by tapestry, laurel or yew hedges) to give year-round colour. Old-fashioned rose beds are underplanted with tulips for spring and with alliums and campanulas for summer. There is a formal herbaceous border, a water garden and a swimming pool area with large planted pots. Shrub roses and climbers are to be found winding up walls and trees. The plantings reflect a desire to create an informal feeling within a formal framework. The woodland garden is almost an arboretum of ornamental trees (especially birches, maples, whitebeams and many different magnolias), underplanted with spring bulbs. In summer the grass is left long in the wood and wildflowers are encouraged to naturalise. Hodges Barn is a garden of great energy and diversity.

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