Monday, June 14, 2010

A change of level

Whether it's short flights of steps or bold terraces, a change in level in the garden gives loads of opportunity for planting and creative decoration.

Abrupt changes in level call for steps, one of the best eye-catching features of any garden. Garden designers have always exploited the visual appeal that steps have. Steps in the garden can be just a few squared timbers, stones or bricks laid straight on the ground to join two shallow terraces or at their most complex a flight of stairs that are a statement of grandeur to link a high terrace with the ground below.

These simple steps made of stone were at the beautiful garden at
West Dean in England.

At this B&B in England the stairs made the transition from lower garden to upper garden.

I love the look of weather brick stairs such as these at Hole Park in England.

Of course any flight of steps can become unstable over time such as these at Igtham Mote in England...but don't you want to see where they lead despite the warning which reads "DANGER Unsafe Masonry Please Keep Off".

Stairs can lead you from garden room to garden room as here at the Royal Botanical Gardens at Wisley in England.

In this case the stairs are what takes you from the driveway to the front of my humble home.

At the gardens at Boyton Court in England these stairs lead from a lower garden back up to the main house which is a spectacular B&B. 

I think the most interesting set of stairs I've found were also at Boyton this case a set of ordinary steps are transformed into something unique by the water cascading down the center, which flows from the upper terrace through a channel to a pond below.

Of course this magnificent staircase at the garden at Mt Ephraim, in England is by definition pure grandeur.

If there's any doubt that a set of steps don't have to be fancy it's this one at
Emmett's Garden in England.

Of course the one that's hard to beat is this set of stairs at Great Dixter, England, home of one of the greatest garden designers of all time, the late Christopher Lloyd...the lower image seen from above.

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