In autumn there is often a bit of elective moving about of plants in every garden. I can never resist trying for a different effect - grouping, contrasting or just plain fussing. But it’s not usually as frightful as this. It all seemed so much smaller and easier at a distance. Close up, the work and the risks seem alarmingly big. My heart almost fails me.
The rewards are going to be immense. We have acquired a wrecked farmhouse in a hilly bit of Piemonte in Italy. We’re supremely fortunate, far more than we have any right to be. But the project is rather big – to reconstruct the house where it needs it and somehow find a way of developing a garden. Today I want to think about gardening here in Northern Italy– in what is partly abandoned farmland, near the charming town of Mondovi, about 400 metres above sea-level, about 80 kilometres inland from the Ligurian coast.