For the last few months I have been working with a couple near Sandwich in Kent who are building a large, modern, barn style house. It is part of a development on the site of an old brickworks and, as you'll see from the photos, there is nothing there apart from the new houses, some fencing, a few newly planted trees and the views over the surrounding fields. Such a blank canvas is quite a daunting prospect and the clients came to me for help in turning the current sea of clay into a beautiful garden to go with their lovely new house. As well as designing the garden I will also be advising on the construction, supplying the plants and planting up the garden.
The starting point of the design was the three sets of large bi-fold doors at the back of the house, which make the garden visible from every room on the ground floor. As the garden is such an integral part of the house it will need to look good all year round. Their requirements were for a patio for entertaining, a lawn for their dogs and grandchildren and for evergreen shrubs, flowers and colour. The other houses in the development need to be screened where possible but the views out to the countryside kept as much as possible.
The building site earlier in the year.
The house is L-shape so will enclose the new patio area at the back. The clients wanted to avoid just having a boring, square expanse of paving, so it extends out into the garden slightly and has been broken up by planting beds, aswell as planting against the house to soften all the hard elements. The plot is irregular in shape, so to make most of the space a main circular lawn is to extend out from the patio and then lead onto a wide pathway, which then leads back round to the house. Interest is created with the different areas to walk through and the different views within the garden and out into the surrounding countryside.
Sketch of the House and Patio area.
Sketch of the view from the living room.
The hard lanscaping is happening at the moment. Once completed we will move on to the mammoth task of improving the clay soil ready for the planting.
More photos to follow later in the year...