The Repton Gazette and Brown Advisor

300 Frequently Asked Questions about Capability Brown, and a further 200 about Humphry Repton

Category: Planting (Page 1 of 6)

295: Where did he get his trees?

Mrs W of Newcastle-upon-Tyne has asked where the indigenous and ingenious Capability Brown, idol of Indians and Chiefs alike, got his trees and it’s a good question, especially when it comes from that splendid city Newcastle, strong indeed in the matter of coal-mines and ships, but less so when it comes to the commercial tree nurseries of the 18th century.

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290: What went wrong?

Many have been the triumphs of Capability Brown’s tercentenary

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280: What news of the Norfolk school?

Before recommending to our public Tom Williamson and David Brown’s Lancelot Brown and the Capability Men (London: Reacktion Books, 2016), the new basket of bouquets to that ‘Tractor of True Taste, Capability Brown, my friends and I decided we would each select some bonbon from the book that would justify such a purchase.

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259: Did Brown plant groves?

Trimmed

The groves of Blenheim were captured in their infancy by S.H.Grimm

The good Yorkshireman Professor W*, to whom I referred in my last, has also raised with me the question of groves, and in particular, for he has a great interest in the subject, whether Brown himself was a planter of groves.

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253: How is it for you? (3) Land management

Forgive me if in this note I resume my happy task of setting out the progress of enlightened thought in pursuit of that snappy salesman, the gardener, Capability Brown, through a consideration of Dr Sarah Rutherford’s new book Capability Brown and his landscape gardens.

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248: Should we allow highly-bred plants?

Ms T writes from Hampton Court. She is designing a garden in the style of that man, no nun, but a notable gardener, Capability Brown and wants to know how he would have felt about Fagus sylvatica ‘purple fountain’ weeping copper beech, or corkscrew willow.

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68: Netting?

 

If this were a strictly theatrical planting, the spiky junipers would be out of place

If this were a strictly theatrical planting, the spiky junipers would be out of place

How productive simple misunderstandings can be! My note 67 caught the eye of Mrs B of Kew, who was prompted by the discussion of netties to ask about netting shrubberies to protect them from grazing animals.

Well, Mrs B, that’s not precisely what is meant by a nettie, but your question remains worthwhile.

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245: Did Brown work at Wentworth Castle?

The spoil heap at Wentworth Castle

The spoil heap at Wentworth Castle

Days come in late March or in April, when Spring has not wholly disentangled herself from Winter, but there is a freshness to the air and it is better to be out than to be in. So I am advised by the good folk of Health and Safety , who have asked me to warn you that happiness can cause damage in confined spaces.

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236: What do you know about valleys?

The golden valley, as fine an example of the valley adventitious as you will ever see

The golden valley, as fine an example of the valley adventitious as you are ever likely to see

Miss S writes to tell me that being newly arrived in Berkhamstead she took herself to view the town’s great landmark, known as the Golden Valley, and she wonders now if that master of beech-hung beauty, Capability Brown, whom she knew by reputation, could have worked his wizardry there.

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193: Now, tell me about Yew rows?

I find myself caught in a dilemma in respect of the plants used by the King’s gardener Capability Brown. On the one hand, Dr L writes from Essex to ask for more practical detail, as she is encouraging her students to consult the Brown Advisor. On the other hand Mr R of Finsbury Park, London, would prefer a deeper, more abstract, probe into the meaning of the formidable Capability Brown, if there be such.

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The Brown Advisor©2015

By John Phibbs