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 Regency House / Garden
 Mid-Victorian Garden
 Garden Divided
 Between the Wars
 Post War Years
 Photo Gallery

by Ted Howell
Post War Years
Several photographs exist showing detail of the house and front garden in the 1950’s and 60’s (Central Library Ealing, collection T371). All show a similar view. A range of, mainly evergreen, shrubs back the front wall. There is a flowering cherry (possibly Prunus Kanzan) to the left of the gate and the wisteria is present, being seen first in a summertime view, labelled Norwood Green, 1950’s.


In essence, the front garden remains the same today – a collection of flowering and foliage shrubs and climbers.

The rear garden, however, changed quite markedly in the years between the second war and the new millennium. In some ways it matured, in others it dwindled.

Four large trees dominated the garden: the wild cherry (Prunus avium), the ash (Fraxinus excelsior), an English yew (Taxus baccata) and a Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus gunnii). There was only a single, small statue, no water features, and no garden architecture beyond a simple brick-built potting shed halfway along the left hand boundary wall. In the 1980s a yew hedge was planted from the end of this structure along the line of the present rectangular pool thus bisecting the garden. By 2000 the hedge had grown to two meters in height with a centrally placed topiary arch.

The lawn beyond the hedge was planted with fruit trees, a number of which remain in 2005. The garden was poorly furnished with shrubs or climbers excepting the all-pervasive ivy (Hedera helix cvs. and H. colchica cvs.) and a magnificent Magnolia soulangeana that stood on the site of the present conservatory.

Herbaceous perennials were largely confined to large clumps of the more vigorous varieties, plants such as motherwort (Astrantia major), day lily (Hemerocallis fulva), comfrey (Symphytum cvs.), Geranium endressii and michaelmas daisies (Aster spp.) dominating the summer borders.

Many more worthwhile plants, however, had prospered. Crocus tommasinianus now colonises most of the borders, there are still two large clumps of Solomon’s seal (Polygonatum x hybridum) and there is a small but interesting collection of bearded iris. (For a full list of plants see below in Plant List).

The garden has now existed for more than two centuries. Repeatedly revised and re-invented, it has weathered the vicissitudes of two world wars, three major economic slumps and the rise and fall of Empires. The garden changes as fashion or expediency dictated, but change is a necessary part of any landscape. Plants, and fashions, are transitory but the Garden retains its spirit– the country garden of an English gentleman.

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