The Winter Garden
The area next to the cottage is sheltered by a lovely old brick wall which was part of the original farmyard of Marlpit Farm. It is overgrown with ivy and wisteria and has a Magnolia grandifolia in the corner. This patch of garden faces south and is protected on two sides. It is a perfect place for a winter garden and in March it is graced with hellebores, pulmonaria, hyacinths and daffodils. There are snowdrops too but they are over by March.
There are plants of interest at other times of the year such as the Heavenly Bamboo (Nandina domestica) and Abelia × grandiflora but it is best in the spring.
The winter garden is also good for wildlife. Not only are there many bee-friendly flowers but the ivy covered wall is an excellent place for insects such as the Vanessa butterflies to hibernate and for small birds to shelter in overnight in the winter.