Design and planting
The Corner garden is two steps higher than the adjoining Mixed border and Clipped garden. The rectangular garden is fenced off on one side by the Yew of the Clipped garden and on two other sides by the brown beech hedge which continues on from the Mixed border. This is followed by the red blocks of Berberis thunbergii ‘Atropurpurea’. A lower hedge of Cotoneaster simonsii has been planted in front of the brown beech hedge. The different heights of the two hedges add extra depth to the garden.
The remaining side of the garden looks out over the lawn in the central area. The path has been laid in an L-shape leaving a square flowerbed in the middle. As there is no hedge on one side of this garden, smaller plants have been used here. A dwarf aster ‘Prof. Anton Kippenberg’, was chosen as the main sort. This forms a green cushion in the summer and becomes a spectacular blue-purple colour in the autumn. The transparent planting of Verbena Bonariensis and the ornamental grass Panicum virgatum ‘Rehbraun’ introduce height to the flowerbed.
The remaining plants flower in different stages. In the wider part between the path and the beech hedge there is a small terrace with a bench. On both sides of this are flowerbeds with the rosebush Rosa White Fleruette’ and the Geranium phaeum ‘Samobor’. In front of the Yew hedge there are the Clerodendrum trichototum. A lovely contrast to the straight geometric shape of the Yew hedge.
When the experimental gardens were extended, round about 1974, Mien Ruys experimented in the central part of the gardens from the Flower terrace to the Mixed border with roses in circular beds spread out all over the area. She called this ‘Blowing bubbles’, a principle she often used in the sixties. Following an earlier experiment with roses, grown on the spot where the present Autumn garden is situated, she experimented with roses once again. To separate the different colours she used slightly curved larch hedges. The roses were not successful. On the one hand because of the acid and damp peat soil which was not suitable for roses and on the other hand she did not want to use any chemical pesticides which were necessary to keep the roses free of diseases and pests. As a joke one of the circles was planted with annuals. These were placed in circles in the colours lilac, blue and purple. Mien Ruys had been inspired by old fashioned flowerbeds that were often seen abroad. She called this ‘ kitschberg’.
In the early eighties the ‘Blowing bubbles’ experiment was removed. The larch hedges remained and formed the background to some new gardens; the Yellow garden, the Blue border and the Rose garden. Near the present Corner garden, close to the central area, another attempt was made to experiment with roses. Stronger sorts of roses were then available that could withstand the diseases and pests.
In one of the curves in the Larch hedge, this rather damp part of the garden was raised 40 centimetres and walled in. A hedge, Ilex meservae, was placed on the other side. Along this hedge strong roses were planted in pink, lilac, crimson and salmon colours, connected by Nepeta. Chalk and rock flour were added to give the roses a good start. This worked well, but the shape of the rose garden was not ideal. It became a sort of raised platform and was not closed in enough. IN 1996 the rose garden was moved nearer the corner and was circle shaped. This garden was given the name: Garden with roses.