Our cottage garden (Belgium)


Our garden situated in the picturesque "Pajottenland", the beautiful region of Breughel, is a romantic garden, of which the most recent parts are divided in garden rooms or outdoor rooms. The hedges in different varieties are key elements in the design of our outdoor rooms. The borders are hedged with santolina (cotton lavender), box (buxus sempervirens, lonicera nitida "Lemon", lavendula etc.

In the very beginning we had a few small borders, much lawn and a big fruit- and vegetable garden.  Ten years ago we started to enlarge the borders, taking account of the structure, shape of the foliage, soil, and colour. And the lawn gradually went and many borders took its place.

Let us have a closer look at the garden

The front garden with the pink, pastel purple border is dominated by the governess (lady made in twigs of the silver birch). This garden is filled with phloxes, roses, lavatera Barnsley,Lavatera olbia “rosea” , herbs, echinacea purpurea ”alba”, santolina (cotton lavender) several species of geraniums, schizostylis coccinea “Sunrise”, linaria “Canon J.Went etc...
At the front door, a small table is always decorated with flower arrangements, candles, and garden decorations changing as the season wears on.
The walls in French stone are decorated in any one season with home-made hanging baskets (twigs of the silver birch and osier).
A newly designed border leads us to the back garden.  A hedge of physocarpus opulifolius  “Diabolo” provides the frame of this recent mixed border (paeonies, hydrangea “Anna Bella” and hydrangea macrophilla, several species of Austin- and other roses, senecio “Sunshine”, sisyrinchium striatum , echinacea purpurea, spirea “Goldflame”, penstemon “Hidcote Pink”, hemerocallis “Black Magic” cynara scolymus and a generous drift of pink Japanese anemones “Anemone x hybrida”, anaphalis margaritacea .....Take a few steps down the lawn: here the lilac border with shrubs and perennials of deep purple foliage and soft pink unfolds its velvet soft colours.
In this border the emphasis is clearly on a lot of geraniums, sedum, phlox paniculata, veronicastrum virginicum, leycesteria formosa and a great deal of Austin roses....Surrounded by a luxuriant vegetation you find on the left a pond with a brooklet.  Hostas, hydrangeas and astilbe chinensis “Pumila” as ground cover, thrive on the northern side of the house.  Through the hedge shadowed by a pergola, clothed with rosa “New Dawn”, clematis montana and clematis texensis Princess of Wales and gravety beauty we enter into another garden room
On the right we have the yellow blue border with the bubble stones.  In the nearness of the two little ponds surrounded by hillocks covered with perennials, low shrubs and pennisetum , sedum ...the heron made of twigs of the silver birch is on duty (at the ponds). When we walk under the pergola (6 meters) grown with all sorts of climbing roses, clematis, lonicera, hedera, we see on the left the purple-lilac autumn border. On the right we have the flower and garden decoration gallery.
In the purple-yellow border (10 meters) separated from the autumn border by a tightly clipped yew hedge, we have a mixture of lavender, alchemilla mollis (lady’s mantle), roses, phlomis russeliana and fruticosa (Jerusalem Sage), euphorbia Characias ssp. Wulfenii , several viburnums (blooming in Winter), laburnum, sambucus plumosa aurea, catalpa aurea, euonymus alatus (known for its spectacular end-of-season foliage) thalictrum flavum glaucum, ruta graeveolens “Jackman’s blue” herbs,......In front of this border we have the magnificent astilbe and helleborus walk.
The next garden room in pastel colours invites us, especially in the evening, to inhale the perfume of the lonicera Belgica and to enjoy, sitting on the bench, the cosy atmosphere of the flower arrangements and candles on the garden table.
Through an arch of beech we enter into the last big garden room with the greenhouse.
On the left we have the yellow border (a lot of all sorts of euphorbia, phlomis russeliana, asphodeline lutea, sisyirinchium striatum, libertia formosa, thalictrum flavum glaucum, Austin rose Graham Thomas  ..... hedged by santolina.  Take a rest on the terrace and enjoy on the right the red-rose border (the rose and white lavender and malva moschata  the aromatic Austin roses, penstemon “Hidcote Pink, lavatera Barnsley , -rosea and -“Candy Flox” , leycesteria formosa, physocarpus opulifolius “Diabolo”, verbena hastata, sanguisorba obtua and –canadensis.... and on the left the yellow-orange border with several kinds of orange roses, meconopsis cambrica, macleaya cordata "Coral Plume"....
and on the right thalictrum flavum ssp glaucum, centaurea macrocephala, a lot of euphorbia ...In the greenhouse we cultivate  tomatoes during summer and in early spring this is the perfect place for our annuals and seedlings. In front of the greenhouse you enter through an arch covered with 10 species of yellow climbing roses (10 meter) into the secret garden.
Through the arch we enter into the vegetable garden, we grow organically all sorts of vegetables, potatoes and herbs. On your right hand I started a few months ago with a white border and on your left hand you have a border of hemerocallis. A 25m long axis with lavendula on both sides provides the illusion of a deeper sense of space, the lavender a subtle touch of the South of France.  Two rows of physocarpus opulifolius “Diabolo” protect the vegetables against cold winds.
This is the territory of the master of the house.  As fanatics of organic gardening we consider that we have a big responsibility with regard to the environment, animals, birds and insects.  Under the roses which clothe the timber supports of the pergola, we enter into a small orchard with approximately 15 half-fruit trees. At the bottom of the garden, in the shadow of big trees we keep a dozen of compost heaps.
In 2005 we laid out a new border  (18m  by 6m  with especially annuals with beautiful  capsules for flower decorations and new species of perennials
Since, as a newly retired couple, we have more spare time, our slumbering interest for nature and gardening  has become a daily occupation.
Moreover our passion enables us to support financially the homeless in our country and the street children of Pereira (Columbia)

“There must be a single note that inspires a musician to write a piece of music, perhaps it is the singing of a bird, the sound of running water, the wind in the trees.  Similarly, for each of us who make a garden, there must be that first seed that is planted “

(Ryan Gainey)

Open Garden days 2008

It is the 8th year we open our garden for the public.  Last year we welcomed 831 adults and 90 children and this in spite of the bad weather  

Family Baeyens-Pots (Lievesgarden)
Bosstraat, 68B
1742 Ternat (Sint -Katherina-Lombeek) Brabant, Belgium 20 km away from Brussels
Website : http://lievesgarden.en.skynetblogs.be

Dates of opening 2008

Sunday     June 15   13-19 h

Saterday   June 28   10-18 h.

Sunday     June 29   10-18 h

Sunday     July 27   13-19 h

Groups (at least) 20 persons in June, July or August after appointment)
Entrance 3 E (guided visit, coffee, tea with biscuits, juice included)  All the fees are entirely for the above mentioned charity

Income  at the opening days : 1.5 E