Friday, February 02, 2007

The topiary garden

For the first time the other day I noticed the lovingly tended topiary garden in Whatlington Road opposite the Mill House (to which, I think, it belongs).

I have driven and walked past this small feature innumerable times over the years, but never really looked at it. I wonder at the enormous amount of effort that must go into creating and maintaining it. A season or two's neglect and all would be lost. Maybe it is a kind of green active meditation, with the rhythm of cutting and shaping the bushes having a soothing effect. Maybe it is something that is kept in trim simply because it is there, like turf cut mazes or hill figures.

I like the large ash tree in the centre too, with its winter brown keys hanging still in the misty air.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like the start of an interesting line of enquiry. When, and under what circumstances, did the practice of topiary originate? What is its geographical distribution? Where does it fit into the spectrum of landscape physiognomy eg names, landscape gardening, chalk figures, garden figures?

Anonymous said...

Predictably, Wikipaedia has the answers to these questions!