Planting plan for artistic garden

The ‘From Picasso to Monet’ garden, designed by students of the Irene School of Garden Design at the Plantland Cornwall Hill Garden Design Show was created, like the work of these artists, to provide an escape from reality

“Like lovers of art revel in the works of these artists, we wanted to create a space in which people can take pleasure and reflect,” explains Isabel Nel, who designed the garden along with John Watson and Marthinus Iding.

Their idea was to create a mini-forest garden, but rather than your common garden woodland, this is an enchanted retreat, complete with mystical ferns and colourful flowering plants. The colour was achieved with plantings of Agapanthus ‘Baby Pete’, various pansies and petunias (‘Amethyst Eye’ and ‘Pretty Much Picasso’) and ‘Sasol’ and ‘Burgundy Iceberg’ roses.


Terraces were created to give the impression of walking into a forest overlooking a landscape. A patio edged with moss provides a captivating viewing point. This is reached via a pathway and steps built with recycled wood pallets. “We enhanced the journey with colourful, scented plants, such as lavender and Agapanthus africanus and varieties with interesting leaves like Cycas revoluta, C. rumphii syn. C. thouarsii and ferns including Dicksonia antarctica, Asparagus densiflorus, Rumohra adiantiformis and Blechnum capense.”


A rustic water feature evokes a peaceful atmosphere and is surrounded with C. revoluta, various smaller ferns, lavender and white miniture pansies.

“On a more practical note, as mostly low-maintenance trees, ferns and perennials were used in its design, this garden is easy to maintain, simply needing regular watering and feeding. Annuals were brought in to add colour and can be replaced with the change of season,” she concludes.


Download the plan for this garden, plus the lists of plants and hard landscaping materials you’ll need to implement it.