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Robert Barker Design – Garden and Landscape Design in London and Cambridge


The Red Thread - 2016 Hampton Court Palace

The Red Thread


An ancient Chinese myth states that when we are born the gods tie our ankles with a red thread and attach it to all the people whose lives we’re destined to touch.

This garden represents a modern interpretation of this myth. Two oak character posts stand at opposite corners of the garden symbolising people destined to meet. Six large oak posts, varying in heights and sizes, are arranged between them with red rope, threaded in a dramatic pattern representing the complex journey destiny can take to connect two people.


"The Red Thread by designer Robert Barker exemplifies all that is interesting about the conceptual gardens and the judges agree with me because they gave it a gold medal. It makes you think, ideas are provoked that you can accept or reject and the important thing is it makes us look at our world and our gardens with fresh eyes"  - Monty Don



The Red Thread - Plant List



Cornus controversa


Hydrangea quercifolia

Nandina domestica

Pittosporum tobira 'Nanum'


Asplenium scolopendrium

Blechnum spicant

Dryopteris dilatata

Dryopteris filix-mas

Gymnocarpium dryopteris

Polystichum setiferum

Perennials and Grasses

Agerantina altissima 'Chocolate'

Astrantia 'Roma'

Carex morrow 'Ice Dance'

Cornus canadensis

Dicentra formosa 'Langtrees'

Epimedium x youngianum 'Niveum'

Geranium 'Rozanne'

Hakonechloa macra

Hosta 'Francee'

Luzula sylvatica

Pachysandra terminallis

Persicaria polymorpha

Rodgersia 'Irish Bronze'

Sanguisorba 'Tanna'

Tiarella 'Spring Symphony'

Veronciastrum virginicum 'Lavendultrum' 


All the plants are available to purchase directly from Kelways who sponsored the plants for The Red Thread garden.


Studio telephone: 07540567707