Update  : Unfortunately De kleine plantage no longer exist… but fond memories remain.

In the northern part of The Netherlands, 25km from Groningen, you can visit an exceptional garden and nursery at the edge of the village Eenrum. In 1986 Fleur van Zonneveld en Eric Spruit started the garden by planting the main structure. A very formal structure features different rooms at both sides of a central axis. Within these “rooms” the planting is more naturalistic and less formal. The many perennials are combined with grasses and shadow plants. Especially more to the back of the garden shadow plants and their beautiful textures are the stars of the show. Wandering through the garden is a true discovery path and some exceptional plant combinations give a lovely exciting effect.


The garden also plays with the surrounding views of the fields, trees and villages. You get  glimpses of what is beyond the garden, but never the full picture. It’s clear this garden is all about wonder, surprise and a deep love for nature and plants.


Near the entrance you can also see a beautiful pot garden. A true color landscape next to  the beautiful background of rusty red barns. It’s lovely to see how the garden gets constantly updated throughout the seasons. Plants are chosen in the nursery and fitted in the borders, if not completely convinced, the owners go back and come up with some other possibilities. fullsizeoutput_4a43IMG_3785fullsizeoutput_4a49

The nursery also speaks of this love of plants and gardening. Although an acer campestre hedge sets the boundary between the garden and the nursery, this boundary is never really a hard one. De kleine plantage has about 2500 species in their catalogue of which about 1500 are available at the nursery. Plants are ordered by color and only second by alphabet. In the large shadow section the plants are ordered on their Latin names.


Wandering around in the nursery I felt like a child in a candy shop. The selection of perennials is so exquisite that choosing was very hard. Since we were there on a small holiday, also the room in the car limited what I could take :-). In the end I went home with Seseli Montanum,  Monarda ‘Prärienacht’, Phlox ‘Hesperis’ and ‘Swirly Burly’, some Artemisia ludoviciani ‘Valerie Finnis’, Aster Divaricatus, Dahlia Mexican Star and Thalictrum ‘Hewitt’s double’


With a cup of apple juice and a tea we had a last look in this lovely place before we continued our journey. Happy with what we saw and happy with the new additions for my garden.

Website (Dutch & German only) : https://www.dekleineplantage.nl/home.html