As Time Goes By Holker show garden

As Time Goes By, designed by M A Brooks Ltd & Peacock Design, deservedly won a gold award at the 2011 Holker Garden Festival.

As Time Goes By show garden - Holker 2011

Designed for living

This is certainly a garden designed to cope with today’s economic climate.  A garden which can evolve effortlessly but still keep it’s original structure, shape and charm.


The show garden illustrates stage two – The family garden.

Stage one

Designed for the busy working couple with limited free time and budget, but who enjoy relaxing and entertaining friends.

Instead of lawn, the large circular area is gravel for ease of maintenance.  A patio area with screening panels and a sail shade, provides a secluded comfortable space in which to dine and relax, the small gravel area next to it accommodates the barbecue and extends the size of the patio for guests.

A stone monolith water feature adds movement and sound to the garden.

The serpentine, low evergreen hedge and groups of small ornamental fruit trees, provide a permanent all year round structure with the planting areas filled with low maintenance perennials and shrubs.

Stage two – The Family Garden
As Time Goes By show garden at Holker 2011

Planting can be easily adapted

The large circular gravel area has been replaced with child friendly grass for picnics, play tents and family ball games.  The barbecue is now moved near to the water feature and a sand pit replaces it under the shade sail.

Trees and the curved hedge continue to provide structure whilst the rest of the lower planting has been adapted to correspond with maintenance time available and the developing gardening interests of the family.

A small patch near the path now accommodates salad and vegetables, and just proves what can be grown in a small space.  These however, do not detract from the original design, in fact, you have to look twice to notice the display of peas, tomatoes, fennel, broccoli and lettuce.

Stage three – Retired couple

The children have grown up and left home and travelling is now an important pastime for the couple, so the garden needs to survive for long periods on it’s own.

Paving replaces the lawn and the sand pit can either be turned into a raised pool, raised planting bed or additional seating.

Shrubs and dependable perennials now dominate the planting area.  These require little maintenance whilst still providing a changing backdrop of scents, colour and texture throughout the year.

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More information

M A Brooks Ltd –  Agricultural & Landscape contractor, Gressingham.

Peacock Design – Landscape & Garden Design, Caton

Holker Garden Festival – An overview

Holker 2011 Show Garden awards

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