Inspired by Farlam & Chandler’s Pretty & Practical Garden Details

Farlam and Chandler – a UK-based landscape design company, caught my eye months ago, and I’ve since been enjoying their beautiful projects and photography.  They are a great Instagram account to follow for planting inspiration as well as for other interesting ideas and inspiring gardens.  

Cosmos and Angelica

Cosmos and Angelica gigas image by @farlamandchandler
Angelica gigas, white cosmos, and the last remaining fairy wands of giant allium mix together in a planting scheme.

The combination of Angelica gigas and white cosmos is what originally caught my eye – I’ve been trying to think of something that would look great with my own Angelica for a couple of years, and this is perfect, don’t you think?

If you love the look of Angelica (it is a large and dramatic plant with interesting seed heads) – know that I can quite easily grow them year after year in a part shade bed by just shaking and shattering the previous year’s dead heads. These annuals readily and reliably (but not aggressively) reseed and come back annually with minimal effort.

Hedges and Meadows

Clipped Hedges and loose naturalistic planting at Sussex Prairies. Image by @farlamandchandler
Clipped hedges and loose, naturalistic planting at Sussex Prairies. 

The stylistic contrast between a wild and naturalistic planting scheme – where the plants are free to move about, evolve and great ecological communities and some tightly controlled planting (like a neatly clipped hedge) are a design formula that never seems to fails. Wild and tidy, its like when Cher dated Tom Cruise back in the 80’s – fascinating. I can’t look away.

Tiny Stone Dipping Pools

A simple dipping pool set within the limestone cliff at La Louve garden in Provence, France. image by @farlamandchandler
A simple dipping pool set within the limestone cliff at La Louve.

I’m also enjoying their eye for unique details like this stonework and small pool at a La Louve garden (above) in Bonneiux, France, and the practical and pretty plant supports they captured at Sarah Raven’s Perch Hill Garden (Below).

Beautiful Twig Plant Supports

Practical plant supports at Perch Hill garden. image by @farlamandchandler
Beautiful and practical branch and twig plant supports at Perch Hill Garden. (photographed by Farlam and Chandler)

Perch Hill is the garden of Sarah Raven – a woman who has not only grown an inspiring collection of plants but she has built a formidable business around her skills. She is completely worth knowing and following for plant and flower garden and design advice, but also because – she is just amazing all around.

Verbena bonariensis

This shot has me lamenting (for the millionth time) the fact that I have had no luck whatsoever growing verbena bonariensis in my garden.

verbena bonariensis by @farlamandchandler
Verbena bonariensis  mingles with grass seed heads.

(Honestly, has anyone grown it with abandon in New England?). I don’t want to hear about you being able to keep it alive – I want to hear about how you might be able to have it romping around happily – as if it actually likes to grow here. Is it even possible? LMK.

It is one of the plants I covet most from all the gardeners who completely take it for granted and how easily they can have this sweet plant that grows and spreads in any place they like.  Oh, how I wish.

Thyme and Fleabane (Erigeron)

Smooth stepping stones, creeping thyme, and erigeron in a contemporary cottage garden. image by @farlamandchandler
Smooth stepping stones combine with creeping thyme, Erigeron, and smaller round gravel of the same color in this Contemporary cottage garden planting scheme.

Creeping thyme and Erigeron are another planting combo that that I am contemplating trying to implement in my own garden.

I’ve spent a lot of time renovating my front entry garden this season  –  there have been big changes, but there is still lots left to do! (More plants and some hardscaping changes to come next year, when I have a bit more budget).  I’ve been contemplating how hard it would be for someone to wrap monolithic pavers up and put them under the Christmas tree.  Too hard, right? I worry they would crash Santa’s sleigh…

Regardless, I think these two plants would be the perfect pair for in between those new front walkway stones.

Contact or Follow Farlam and Chandler

Follow Farlam and Chandler on instagram. (Credit all images).  

Harriet Farlam and Ben Chandler are accepting commissions in the UK, USA, and beyond. You can reach them through their website as well. Learn More.

Related Posts:

REgister now!

A Free Master Class



  1. Gwn says:

    Yes! I have grown verbena B. in New England- Holliston, Ma. It’s in its second year. It hasn’t gotten nearly as tall as I’ve seen it in pics… I’m impatient- I tend to trim it to stay in the bed it’s in though. Tends towards weedy looking, I don’t think its dense enough yet. Looks lovely dried.
    Also Angelica gigas: any tricks to growing this guy? I got a seedling from a local CSA sale in the spring and it did not flower. Maybe it’s not the gigas variety though…

    • Gwn – what is your secret for verbena? Are you growing from seed and does it re-seed (as I’d like it to?) – I can’t get it to even germinate so hoping for that casual weedy looking plant that I love just popping up where ever is hopeless.
      But Angelica gigas I have no trouble with at all – It reseeds itself annually – it seems happy in the dry shade area but I suspect it would be happier if I treated it better – but I don’t seem to need to.
      Maybe we should swap tips/ seeds since we are so close!?

      • Gwen Erskine says:

        It totally re-seeds by itself! I started it indoors under lights. Very patiently. It got huge fast.
        Yes, time to trade NE gardening tips, what else to do while the snow covers everything?

  2. Gwen Erskine says:

    Oh, wait. …. I wonder if any of the verbena B. flowers that I dried have viable seeds…. Want some? To try scattering them one where you want them in the spring…

  3. Gwen Erskine says:

    So, my first comment didn’t make it: yes, I have grown verbena B in Holliston ma. They are in their 2nd year, can look weedy to the untrained eye, or maybe they are just in the wrong spot in my yard. I have dried some of the seeds heads. Want some?
    Re angelica: mine didn’t bloom this year, got the seedling from a local VS A spring sale. Thoughts?

  4. Rob T. says:

    The whole point, I’ve always thought, of Verbena bonariensis is that it does look weedy, i.e., totally unplanned and somewhat leggy. As for Angelica gigas, it is a biennial and should bloom in its second year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Does Your Garden Need a Makeover?

Learn my 7-step system to design and build a stunning garden anywhere in the world.


Join my Free Class!

Understand the 5 mistakes everyone makes when creating a garden. (Save yourself time, money, & headaches and get much better results!)

See how to work directly with me (but at a DIY price!) to
design and create your own gorgeous garden.