|Superb placement: Bismarckia nobilis|
|Strong structure in shades of green: Silas Mountsier's garden, Nutley, New Jersey|
|The garden houses a large collection of sculptures and other artworks, carefully placed in the landscape - or the landscaping is carefully placed around them.|
|A broad bank planted entirely in clones of Hakonechloa macra, subtly different in both summer and when sere in winter. It is strimmed off in late winter before daffodils emerge from below it.|
|Dramatic foliage in Graham Hardie's garden.|
Remarkably, however, the Mountsier garden is one of a pair. His partner, Graham Hardie, has his own house across the street, and here he and Richard Hartlage have created another remarkable and beautiful space. In this case, however, the planting is in vibrant colours and textures from flowers and foliage - though all combined with remarkable touch. Lushness there is, but it's not overwhelming and although bright it's not gaudy: the planting is controlled by strong lines and structural shapes that prevent it from becoming just a jungle. Though very different, the two gardens, like their owners, complement each other and make a great couple. I thank Silas and Graham for a lovely afternoon.
|Contrasts in form, texture and colour in the Hardie garden: lush but controlled.|
|Roadside planting in Graham Hardie's garden: the standards are Euonymus.|