We created a bright, cheerful vintage garden for Enid and Robbie on ITV Love Your Garden. They wanted a beautiful space that reminded them of their golden years.
Because Robbie’s eyesight was fading, we used lots of bright red and pink flowers to make sure she could see it.
First, we levelled off the garden and put in a flat patio. Hard landscaping is a good alternative to a lawn if you don’t have the time or mobility to mow it regularly.
Then we put in painted fences with trellis tops. These gave the garden a seaside feel and opened up the view.
We finished by planting colourful and traditional varieties in beds and pots around the garden and seating areas. We made sure to put scented plants in too.
Here’s how to get the vintage garden look with the Love Your Garden planting list.
Robbie and Enid both loved roses, so we put in several varieties. Rose gardens look and smell beautiful, and the flowers are great for cutting so you can enjoy them indoors too.
We planted the varieties Peace, Alec’s Red, Queen Elizabeth, Korresia Yellow, Silver Jubilee Pink and Blessings Salmon Pink.
Many of these varieties are old roses dating from the 1960s and 70s. They have a traditional blowsy look that gives the garden a real vintage style.
Gardens are about more than just visual effect. The most stunning gardens appeal to the other senses like smell, touch and sound.
We used as many fragrant plants as possible for a garden that smells as good as it looks!
We planted herbs like thyme, basil and lemon verbena alongside lavender and jasmine. Then we added more unusual varieties like nicotiana, Monarda ‘Squaw’ and chocolate cosmos.
Flowers and foliage
We wanted this garden to look great all year round, so we added leafy plants like box, phormium and fatsia japonica. We also planted two small trees: robinia pseudoacacia and cornus ‘Eddie’s White Wonder’.
Then we put in lots of flowering plants. Climbing clematis will grow up the fences and pelargoniums filled bright metal buckets.
We also planted lilies, dianthus, geraniums, gaillardia, achillea, delphiniums and alstroemeria.
We then put a layer of gravel over the top of the soil. This prevents weeds from growing and holds water in, making the garden easier to maintain.
To recreate this look at home, combine classic flowering English garden plants in bright colours. And finish off with vivid patio sets and vintage-style accessories and soft furnishings.
You’ll have a garden that transports you to another world!
See how we made this garden with my behind-the-scenes photos and check out the before and after garden gallery.
David Domoney is a Chartered Horticulturalist, Broadcaster, and Author. David has worked with a number of the UK’s leading garden retailers as a plant buyer and strategic consultant. With more than 30 years experience, in horticulture, David is as passionate about plants now as he was when he bought his first plant at a village fete.