Shingle Gardening at Dungeness in England

How to explain Dungeness on the south coast of England? Let’s begin with the weather condition: “Wild, severe, essential … salt wind, mainly from the south-west, cold Easterlies, extreme searing sun.” This is according to Kathryn Morris, owner of the Roundhouse, the only residential or commercial property on this shingled promontory that has safeguarding hedges and a fence. Dungeness is a sanctuary and a Website of Unique Scientific Interest, in addition to a website of excellent horticultural interest to the lots of pilgrims who come here to see the garden of artist and author Derek Jarman, made well-known in the ageless book, Derek Jarman’s Garden

Referencing a 19th century collection of ghost stories, Jarman explains Dungeness as the 5th quarter of the world, the other 4 being Europe, Asia, Africa and America. With its own historical nuclear power station (presently being decommissioned), Dungeness is a type of republic, and definitely a location distinguish. Join us for a check out to among its more uncommon corners.

Photography by Caitlin Atkinson, for Gardenista.

Above: West Home, one of 2 lighthouse keepers’ homes which are rented as vacation lets, simply throughout the course from the Roundhouse. In the background, the ever-looming Dungeness A power station, integrated in the 1960s and in the sluggish procedure of being decommissioned.

Dungeness is house to 600 types of plant (one third of all plants discovered in the UK, according to the Dungeness National Nature Reserve). The landscape is for that reason “vegetated shingle” ( shingles here implying beach gravel). At the Roundhouse, constructed around the structures of a 1792 lighthouse, the gardens around 2 lighthouse keepers’ homes have a layer of soil, because the 2 households required to feed themselves in this hardly inhabited location. “There are historic images of greenhouses and nicely set out veggie plots, and bee hives,” states Kathryn. Now, individuals thinking about lunch form an organized line outside the Dungeness Treat Shack for the very best lobster rolls this side of the Atlantic.

Above: Drought-tolerant and resistant Brachyglottis ( planted by Kathryn’s dad), deals with out to sea versus the rounded walls of the Roundhouse.

The Roundhouse was integrated in 1843, partially to support the base of the lighthouse tower, and the 2 lighthouse keepers’ homes were included at this time. When the old lighthouse was destroyed at the start of the twentieth century to give way for a taller one beside it, debris was discarded into what is now Kathryn’s back garden, which is why the ground is “extremely topsy-turvy.”

Above: Under the lee of giant, clipped oleaster ( Elaeagnus x ebbingei), the gravel garden has the ability to grow.

Kathryn’s own garden is accessed through a narrow space in the hedge. The garden was made by Kathryn’s dad, after he purchased the residential or commercial property on impulse about thirty years earlier. He was an artist and carver, which appears in the method he utilized discovered products and constructed structures, however he was likewise a wise garden enthusiast, producing enclosures– and protected locations within those enclosures.

Among the previous home renters operates at Great Dixter home and gardens, a 40-minute drive away. Kathryn asked her to discover somebody to assist guide the Roundhouse garden after she acquired the residential or commercial property, and along came Marc O’Neill: “I right away stated I would, as I like Dungeness.”

Above: Washed-up previous sea defenses from Camber Sands, simply along the coast, bring a sculptural component to the gravel garden.

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