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Take A Seat By Anna Sissons

The Sitting Spiritually garden is cranking up the sensory volume. Sit in the garden with your eyes closed and your ears are flooded with buzz, rustle and chirrup. Scents of Woodruff, Wisteria and Akebia drift past. A bobbing clematis tickles your arm.  

All this sound, smell and arm-tickling is thanks to the dominance of planting, tipping into well over two thirds of the Sitting Spiritually garden and giving the seats pride of place within beautifully planted alcoves. Plants wrap each of the seats in happy thoughts, making you feel safe and sheltered. Nature has your back. Evergreen shrubs form the backbone, scented climbers arch over your head, tall grasses and lofty perennials take a seat beside you and mat forming plants support your feet. The alcove then frames your view of the garden beyond, presenting it to you like two outstretched arms covered in frothy, wafty, fluttery plants. 

You may already know where you would place a garden swing seat, now take that spot in your mind’s eye and fill it with plants, the ones you really want to be close to. The ones that catalyse memories with their scent, that wave at you when you walk past and that invite you to sink your hands into their foliage. Then put your garden seat within them.

Place the back legs of the seat, and set a small slab under them, within the planting bed itself, wrap the beds right up to the armrests and project the lines of the bed in front so they can frame your view. Bring plants right up to your feet, the ones that love to be stepped on so they can give off the scent of sweet summer hay as Woodruff does.

Or place a stepping stone path up to your seat which can be engulfed in ankle-kissing grasses and mexican fleabane. Then underplant the seat with more plants, shade loving perennials such as ferns and violets and let the Woodruff creep under there too forming a starry green carpet. 

Now take your seat! It is part of the garden furniture after all.

Anna Sissons is the gardener at Sitting Spiritually along with her husband, Woody. She also works as a garden designer in the Dorset area.

Anna Sissons
Galium Oderatum Sweet Woodroff in the fore ground
Camassia quamash
Rosa 'Paul's Himalayan Musk',& Philadelphus
Galium & emerging ferns

Posted by Siobhan on May 17th 2021

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