ISSUE 79  |  Summer Picnics

Plant Belles: Wire Supports for the Well Tamed Garden

July 01, 2013 5:00 PM

BY Kendra Wilson

Plant Belles, made in Devon, are intricate or plain. Best described as “rusty wire work for the garden,” the plant supports are made either from steel wire which rusts naturally, or galvanized if that is what is preferred. Either way they are very light, durable, and easy.

Photographs by James Corbett.

Above: The grow-through plant supports are named after Arts and Crafts stars: Christopher (diminutive but fairly wide round the girth, after Christopher Lloyd of Great Dixter); Gertrude, who looks like a wide crinoline, the sort that Miss Jekyll wore with stout boots. They are invisible by midsummer but can be admired shimmering away in winter frost. 

Plant Belles are available for purchase online, but during the summer months can be seen at some of the larger gardening fairs around England. Plant Belles owners Alex and Jenny Maddock are like old-fashioned horse traders, traveling the land with a horse box, except that it is full of hoops and shapes for the garden.

For readers who are not based in the UK, some of Plant Belles’ products can be flat-packed. Please inquire for details.

Above: Plant Belles at Rosemoor Garden in North Devon, UK.

Above: Tunnels are suddenly painless to construct. Very simple hoops will accommodate your own bamboo poles at any length you choose, for a fairly instant tunnel.

Above: Do you have exquisite blooms on which you lavish attention? If so, you will not mind supporting the neck of each one individually with plant crooks.

The concept and execution of Plant Belles crooks are maddeningly simple. They cost from £7 to £9 for a pack of four.

Above: Edging hoops, to place in a row or to provide invisible support to a clump which is threatening to trip you up as you walk by; from £14 for a pack of ten.

On the search for other garden accoutrements? See our favorite Garden Accessories.