Love Your Garden: How to get the New England American look


We loved the garden we created in episode two of Love Your Garden 2015! It was a classic New England American garden, filled with picket fences and flowering plants.

The planting scheme was light and pale with plenty of big, bold shrubs. We used masses of flowers to create real impact in the borders.

The colour palette was white, green, variegated foliage and pastel-toned pink, blue, yellow and purple.

Here is how to get the look at home!

Find information on all Love Your Garden episodes here!

Start with shrubs


These days, shrubs are less popular in the garden than they used to be. They can take up lots of space, and people with smaller gardens are turning to herbaceous perennials instead.

But shrubs are impactful and low-maintenance. They also provide height, shape and structure. Many are evergreen too, meaning they look good all year round.

To create this garden, we used box balls, pink lilac, white hydrangea, ceanothus, rhododendron, viburnum opulus, viburnum plicatum, pittosporum tenuifolium and rosa banksiae ‘Lutea’.

Add flowering plants


We also put in some flowering plants. In fact, that’s an understatement. I think we put more flowers into this garden than any we have done before!

We planting climbers including wisteria and clematis montana. Then we added bergenia, petunias, vinca minor, blue and white agapanthus, lavender, delphinium, white osteospermum and lamium ‘white Nancy’.

See the garden photo gallery here.

Plant up pots


I created some striking containers for the seating area, inspired by the Ritz hotel. They were planted with standard pines and standard viburnum opulus. Standard simply means that they are grown and pruned to reveal a long stem with the growth in a ball on top, like a lollipop.

This leaves room (and light) for under planting them with white hydrangeas and trailing variegated ivy. The effect is really striking.

Make sure to keep plants in containers well-watered so your display doesn’t start to wilt!

Paint in pastel

The final touch was to paint everything to suit the American colour scheme. Most garden features, including pots, planters, arches and picket fencing were painted white. We painted the shed a pastel blue and the wooden fence was covered in navy blue.

See behind the scenes of this garden makeover!



  1. debbie July 6, 2015 at 2:04 pm - Reply

    hi! I have a burning question! what is the edging that you use on all of the paths and planting areas!? I cant wait to do our garden finally, so would love to know what you use to make it look so finesse!

    • David July 7, 2015 at 12:45 pm - Reply

      Hi Debbie, I would recommend corrugated lawn edging. It comes on a roll and you dig a trench at the lawn edge, bury it upright and backfill with soil. It can be buried just below grass level, so you can mow over it and it’s not visible, but it stops the grass spreading into the border.

  2. Suzanne July 18, 2015 at 10:10 am - Reply


    Could you tell me what time of year is best to plant pots like the Ritz themed ones. I want to try and give it a go but was wondering if its getting a bit late in the year and I should wait until spring?


    • David July 20, 2015 at 9:39 am - Reply

      Hi Suzanne, you can plant the pots any time really – spring, summer or autumn. Hope they look great!

      • Suzanne July 21, 2015 at 1:24 pm - Reply

        Thanks for your help!

  3. Jemma July 18, 2015 at 10:37 pm - Reply

    Is there any chance you could do a planting plan for this garden I realise you have kindly listed the plants but I have my first garden …very small! but I would love to attempt something like this colour scheme. I struggle to know what the shrubs are vs the flowering plants and whereabouts you plant them. So it would be great if there was a more detailed guide for beginners! Thank you

  4. Karen July 23, 2015 at 4:32 pm - Reply


    I love the navy blue paint colour for the fence in the American style garden. Having bought many test pots can’t seem to find the right one. What make is the paint please?

    Thanks, love the programme

  5. Sonja August 1, 2015 at 5:50 pm - Reply

    Since watching this episode I have tried to find a Standard Viburnum Opulus at my local garden centres, please please can you tell me where I can get one? (I live in Cheshire)
    I think it’s a beautiful plant and I’m desperate to have one in our garden.
    Thank you

    • David August 3, 2015 at 4:46 pm - Reply

      Hi Sonja, Really sorry to hear that. I’m afraid the ones we sourced were from a trade-only nursery – this helps us keep the costs down. Your local garden centres may be able to order them in especially for you – try asking. If it helps, we got ours from Evergreen Exteriors. David

Leave A Comment

Join Us


Join 25,000 garden enthusiasts for news, advice and gardening guides direct to your inbox


Follow David for his tips, advice, inspirations and behind-the-scenes access to Love Your Garden

social-media social-media social-media social-media social-media


Got a burning question or a media request? Use the contact form to get in touch with our press team.