Stuart Cottage in August

The secret behind the creation of this delightful garden, with its ancient pathways, formal fountain, secluded courtyards and kitchen garden, is the teamwork of its owners. 'But we don't tread on each other's toes — I love all the propagation side, whilst John is very proud of his compost heap and builds the structures,' says Gayle. John, a retired engineer, is the practical one with an intuitive feel for dimension whilst Gayle, a former fashion buyer with an unerring eye for colour, designs the planting. 'I’m full of ideas but can’t always envisage how to carry them out, so this is where John comes in,' she admits. His handiwork includes a wooden rose pergola, stone paths, plant supports, border edgings, kitchen garden, steps and walls.

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