A Bit of Garden History23rd August 2016 • Stephanie's Blog • Stephanie Donaldson
Back in the 17th century, canals became a must-have addition to the fashionable gardens of the day. There’s some discussion amongst garden historians about whether they were inspired by Dutch canals, but as the century included the reign of William of Orange this seems quite likely. Smaller gardens – without space for something so grand – would often include what was called a Dutch Garden. This would feature a formal pond surrounded by beds of spring bulbs, or sometimes irises.
I bring you this historical nugget because we have just returned from visiting friends who have just such a canal in their garden. The grand house that accompanied it has long gone, but this impressive feature is the centrepiece of a garden that is redolent with history. When they first arrived the canal was a carpet of waterlilies with no water to be seen – now it is restored to close to its former glory.