The large pond in the Rockland Border 1 garden features two stone fountains and hosts nesting ducks in the spring and summer. The planting includes hardy gingers, palms, dahlias, canna, fuschias, and bananas. The bright flowers and dramatic foliage of these semi-tropical plants, in combination with ornamental grasses and flowering bulbs, bring an exotic flair to the sunny beds.
A signature plant is abutilon ‘Tiger Eye’ with its orange bells striped with red which attract comments throughout the summer. Unusual ferns, large leaf rhododendrons, and a collection of silver astelia make up the eastern edge of this border in the shade of a giant redwood. .
Carpets of spring bulbs and fragrant shrubs welcome visitors early in the season followed by hellebores, primulas, peonies, and irises. The western edge’s fern garden takes advantage of this shade garden which offers a cool contrast to the hot colours of Rockland 1. It has a strong framework of blue hydrangeas, rare rhododendrons, and Japanese maples.
Plants were carefully chosen for leaf colour, size, and texture as foliage is as important as flowers and scent here. The large leaves of fatsia japonica are a contrast to the smaller, finer texture of calla lily leaves. Lavenders and hebes are planted at the eastern edge, which is sunnier.