Spring clean the air

garden design birch treeI recently had the pleasure of visiting a friend’s new garden on a beautiful spring morning. My friend has been working hard since she inherited the garden from the houses previous owners and it is a true gem of a plot. Although not a large garden and in an urban setting, it has been very well designed to create mystery and intrigue, perfect for childrens’ adventures and quite refreshing to see. I discovered twisted old wisteria entwined within a holly tree, ready to burst into bloom, small mature trees, a bed of various grasses and two mini sun terraces amongst other things.

Sitting on the end terrace in the morning sun, I listened to the birds singing and revelled in the peace and quiet, which was quite surprising as we were near a main road. Happily I observed that the surrounding gardens also contained trees and mature planting, which is rare nowadays given the ever increasing trend for low maintenance sun traps. In my own area there is currently a planning application to fell a mature lime tree, the only tree visible from the back of our house (other than the trees in our own garden of course).

People are often too quick to remove high growth through fear of loss of sunlight and property damage, but this is all at the sacrifice of local wildlife, not to mention the increase in pollution without the air cleaning benefits of mature trees and shrubs in urban environments. Personally I would much rather lose some sunshine in order to bask in the rewards of birds, insects and cleaner air.

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