|A cafe courtyard garden, Castleton, Derbyshire|
At the moment we're thinking of creating a new seating area underneath the fig tree which will be surrounded by plants in containers. Our small, completely enclosed back garden is L-shaped and sheltered by a cedar hedge on three sides with the double garage, the covered yard and the house on the fourth. Most of the borders are given over to 'cottage garden' plants, but we would like to create a small corner with a more Mediterranean-style of planting. The front garden, too, needs some thought. It's rather mixed in style at the moment with another fig tree, jasmine, lavender and some vines growing on the original dry stone wall that was once part of the old estate of a local manor house. There's a raised bed which was put in by a previous owner, but which also might get a makeover in the Autumn. Everything is at the thinking stage and gathering ideas from gardening books and looking at other gardens, which is enjoyable in itself. Nothing drastic will be done as my DH, 'The Gardener', could do with a bit of a rest from any sort of heavy work in the garden.
This is the area that we would like to create a seating area, moving some of the planting, retaining some of the shrubs and, of course, the fig tree. The paved area which has been used to grow vegetables in containers will continue to be used in this way. DH was given a second box tree as a birthday gift. The hare and the ornamental grass was a belated birthday gift given to our daughter by her brother and sister-in-law when she came to stay last week.
In the meantime we enjoyed spending time in a cafe during a recent visit to Castleton, Derbyshire where there was courtyard garden that had plenty of features to admire and inspire.
It was a wet day when we drove over to Castleton so after parking we went into the first cafe we saw on the high street. It was a surprise to find the garden behind the cafe as all the buildings on the street have very narrow front gardens or none at all. On another, sunnier occasion it would be a pleasant place to sit out there. However, on that rainy day we sat inside in a corner of the cafe overlooking the garden and enjoyed our cappuccino and lemon drizzle cake.