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A PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION OF PLAZ METAXU

PLAZ METAXU IS A GARDEN IN DEVON, IN THE South-West of England, that has been created since 1992. It occupies a west-facing valley, and extends over 32 acres, nearly half of which is a pastoral landscape grazed by sheep. A stream fl ows east–west through the valley, entering the garden in the orchard, then taking the form of a canal in front of the house, where it is flanked by a gently terraced lawn. Behind the house, there is a series of enclosed gardens – a walled garden and two courtyards that were formerly the farmyards. The main garden unfolds to the west of the house and is centred on the lake, made in 1994. The extensive lawns around the lake are fringed by areas of woodland, hedged enclosures and sheltered walks, themselves linking adjacent groves. Below the dam of the lake, a last formal area is bounded by a ha-ha. The stream, which is diverted around the lake in the main garden, here returns to its original course before fl owing on down the centre of the valley to a final pond with a cascade. While open to the west, and to the sky, the valley, from within the garden, is largely self-contained. Extensive panoramas do, however, occur, from either side of the valley, on the high walk that has been landscaped within the encircling pastures. This expansiveness adds an important dimension to the garden, as does the reciprocity of contact (which is vital) between the garden and its surrounding fi eldscape.

Garden Plan A plan of the garden can be seen on the endpapers at the front and back of this book. AREAS of the garden are identified by the NUMBERS 1–39. FEATURES within the garden areas are identifi ed by the LETTERS A–U. These NUMBERS and LETTERS are shown in square brackets throughout the text, thus: [00].

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