A garden can still look good in January and the leaf colour and texture of evergreens mixed with deciduous shrubs can have its own beauty. But I have been thinking that it is not just the aesthetics of January that is relevant in this month, but our whole attuned towards nature. This got me thinking about Yin and Yang. Most simply, the theory of Yin and Yang describes a world being made up not of opposite and opposing forces, but an experience in life where events and things are actually connected, sometimes complimentary and more often interdependent. So Winter is not the [...]
The client's brief was to transform their garden into something 'neat but abundant' that would also be football and trampoline friendly (which we sunk into the ground to minimalist its impact on the eye). We moved the patio to the back of the garden into a lovely sun trap. Even though the design is relatively contemporary with Indian sandstone, metal Corten steel edging and pleached Hornbeam we used second hand Victorian garden tiles along the west edge to give a hint of the origin of the house as well as introducing curves to balance the geometric nature of the rest of [...]
My clients wanted to make their garden feel more accessible from the kitchen having put in beautiful floor to ceiling sliding doors.The first thing I did was to choose a porcelain tile with a weathered oak affect. I decided on a slightly larger tile to create both a seamless effect as well as indicating it was a change to an outdoor space.We also raised the level of the patio so now my clients can walk straight out into the outdoors without stepping down. It is surprising what a difference this makes.We clad the raised planters with Cedar wood which, if [...]
June is a productive month to revisit gardens that we have designed and built, especially when the work was done in Winter or early Spring. During that time plants arrivde and once planted the perennials could only be noticed by a few small sticks. It takes all my efforts to assure clients that there is more to come!In this garden the overriding design theme was tranquility. We choose woodland plants to suit the large Cedar in the back garden. At the back the clients wanted a more open prairie feel so we used Sesleria autumnal and because the soil was heavy clay [...]
The whole front garden was just shingle onto of old brick and concrete. The worse the garden the better for me as the transformation is that much more delightful.My clients wanted a front garden design that would compliment and enhance the front of their newly renovated house. They still wanted an area to drive into the property to park and they wanted the bed to be very low maintenance.I separated the drive area from the garden with a mixed evergreen hedge and a bespoke black metal arch to match the curve of the arch over the doorway and the metal trim [...]
After removing 60 tonnes of soil and clay down 15 steep steps we put this Hot Tub to bed!By using curved paths and varying the stone we used with a thinner Dutch brick we were able to make a dramatic difference to this back garden. The plants will come out soon and when you are in the Hot Tub the plants will form a subtle cocoon around your head.For height we went for a Weeping Birch, Weeping Cherry, Malus Red Sentinel and Sorbus Pink Pagoda. Even in small gardens it is important to be bold with planting trees. If you [...]
We balanced the bright white paths with large limestone rocks, and lush woodland planting like Blechnum spicant, Hellebores, Epimedium and some Armeria maritima.The two green wrapped columns are Australian tree ferns which we are ready to disrobe as soon as the weather improves.In the far back of the garden we have planted Sesleria and Dog daisies to soften the picture and provide a backdrop of movement when the breeze picks up.Japanese acres are dotted about and will blaze with their spring and Autumn colour and give some height under the canopy of this magnificent Cedar tree.
Believe it or not we only finished the garden three months ago but because of the warm Autumn the smaller 2 litre Perennial flowers have grown and blossomed!
A while back this space apparently used to be Lord Sackville's tennis courts. (Sackville of Sackville Rd) . Then it became a neglected suburban garden full of Bay trees.My clients wanted their garden to be a social space both for adults and children, with lots of colour yet low on maintenance.We designed the seating area around a Corten Steel fire pit with lovely golden Cedar wood to match the house and the Summer house. We decided on a deep grey to offset both the wood and the greenery. Two pendulous Birch trees give atmosphere and a third dimension to the [...]
When I first arrived in this garden an old raised bed and broken up pond met me.However, overarching the area was a beautiful apple tree.My clients wanted a peaceful garden where they could relax and entertain friends and family and yet they wanted a loose and open feeling as their garden bordered onto the open expanse of a neighbour's lawn.I thought of how the Japanese create microcosm gardens that reference a greater landscape and how the apple could be the Queen of the Valley.After we filled in the old pond and cleared the old rockery we replenished the soil and [...]