British ones – just a bit bigger and a bit brighter. Time after time we saw swathes of glorious Cretan flowers against a backdrop of high mountains. Back at The Garden House our new site seemed an obvious place to try to capture a little of that Cretan exuberance. The success of the cottage garden’, as our Cretan experiment is known, has inspired a range of other schemes, and we have taken a consciously naturalistic approach in all the new garden areas. For me, one of the joys of gardening is that, each year, the excitement increases. Ideas in the pipeline appear irresistibly attractive: an acre of water-meadow garden planted with a similar mix to the lower walled garden, but with stretches of still water to reflect it; or a quarter-acre of wisterias grown as shrubs, underplanted with spring flowers and bubbling with running water – a mouth-watering prospect. We have been lucky – all of the schemes we have completed so far have worked out even better than we hoped. Lighting ideas music room As for the garden that I have in my mind’s eye, well… Like the best love stories this one is set to run and run.