It’s that time of year when people start thinking about sprucing up their homes and gardens, and a white picket fence makes a crisp backdrop to set off a landscape. Ahh, the good life.
While white picket fences are more commonly seen in cottage gardening, this post shows three gardens with white picket fences at homes of different size and design. From a small village home to a great mansion, the white picket fence can make a statement.
Not all white picket fences are used to protectively delineate the boundary of the home though. Above is a summer example of the fence enclosing the home and separating the garden between public and private space. The flowers have no regard to public and private space as they peek out between the rails.
In these three creative examples from this May, the fence is used a bit differently, yet each is very welcoming to the visitor.
You will find many design “rules” telling you how to plant around your fence, but as you will see in this post and Fence It, my previous post, many ways to plant along a fence are possible. The previous post addressed the nostalgia around the white picket fence and other fencing styles.
Form and color lend a pleasant contrast against the white of the fence readily seen from both inside and outside of the garden, so flowers stand out.
Although not shown in the three examples in this post, vining and trailing plants look great draping a fence or arbor. See this in the post Fence It. Trees planted adjacent to the fence, over-hanging branches spilling over the fence is also a nice designer look.
You can see many spring bloomers in these images, but look closely and you will see the summer flowers just starting to appear in amongst plants in bloom. Keeping blooms sequencing through the seasons is recommended to keep visual interest throughout all four seasons. Often you see Christmas wreaths decorating white picket fences in winter.
In the post Fence It, the images are all from summer and many different gardens.
The garden above is at Montpelier Mansion in Maryland. The theme of this garden is to tell the time by the sun. The mansion is shown below. The white picket fence garden is free-standing in the lawn area – a formal parterre garden with gravel paths. Although formal in design, it has a looser informal, almost cottage feel.
Below is the remarkable garden of Charles Cresson, a renowned plantsman in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. I have much more on his garden to come.
The fence helps to keep overzealous growers contained in addition to creating a border for the garden to aid in defining the space on both sides of the fence.
Separating an entryway from the lawn and garden, a white picket fence creates an airy garden delineation, shown below.
The Lewiston garden is owned by a friend of mine. She is a garden club member and I thought her fence was done up beautifully in spring bulbs. Many summer bloomers are on the way also. I bet she will feel very special being included with these two well-known gardens. Deservingly so too.
Another thing a fence can do is frame a view like shown at Montpelier. Here the house is on axis.
Don’t you just love the iris against the white fence? One thing you might notice in this post and Fence It, is that many flowers used are considered old-fashioned standbys like you may have seen in your grandmother’s gardens. Nostalgia slips in, but it is also that these flowers just look “right”. Look at the roses in front of fences in Fence It. They seem so naturally “right”. But so does many other flowers and shrubs. No need for design rules…
Next post is one I was promising before my trip to Pennsylvania. It is a series of landscaping posts showing properties that do landscaping in the woods quite well. The woodsy series has some great ideas for those of you gardening in the woods. Plus, sculpture and art on wooded paths, a unique way to make the woodland experience memorable.