Stone Cross is a large rural garden enveloping a new build property with tricky levels to contend with, as well as the local deer population. The drive and entrance needed updating to create a sense of arrival. It was about creating a garden that could contend with a 3m bank into which the house was built. This dictated how best to make use of the space for the house to comfortably sit within the garden. There were the root zones of mature trees to contend with. Finally, a deer-proof enclosure was required for the clients to be able to enjoy a ‘jewel garden’.
Some creative thinking was required to enable us to give the clients all they wished for with the greatest possible impact. It was imperative to connect the area between the upper and lower terraces and to combat the 3m slope. We put in wide gravel and sandstone steps which could be easily planted up to soften, retained with corten steel risers. The top terrace extended out to a louvred gazebo, approached over a water feature which ran into a pool. To define the terrace and still encourage the view over the lower garden, glass balustrading was used to separate the top terrace from the steps.
The vista beyond the pergola was extended into the field beyond with the addition of the Beacon firepit, a bespoke curved bench made from gabions positioned to make the most of the view. The lower garden was wrapped with new larch posts to keep the deer out, curved to protect the root zone of the existing tree. Lastly, rather than re-laying, it was decided to work with the existing concrete drive. Granite kerbs and sets were installed, before top dressing with tar and chip.
The planting was designed and undertaken by Nicki at Drew Neat who we collaborated with for all aspects of the planting. They are also providing ongoing maintenance to help the garden develop to it’s full glory.
The design brought together many differing construction elements – the top terrace was constructed using a combination of sawn sandstone paving with clay pavers in the transition areas, with an in-ground water feature too. Gabion cages were used on the lower terrace as retaining walls, and this was repeated in the field where a firepit area was put it on maximise the views. The curved bench was created using gabion cages backfilled with Horsham cobbles to match the house stone. The whole firepit circle was edged in corten steel which was also used in not only the step risers but in the tree rings on the drive.
Dewlands has the capability to design and create, drawing on a highly skilled team, and our own workshop facilities.
The water feature reflects light into the house and provides a wow as you step out on to the terrace, a real centre piece that brings the relaxation of moving water.
The steam bent bench was constructed using green oak from a fallen tree in the garden and steam bent in our own workshop, check out our portfolio for other steam bending projects.
The larch post fence and larch gates was a new design concept to keep the deer out but let the views through, these gates were constructed by the Dewland’s team in our own workshop to suits the specific needs of the site, where off-the-shelf just would not have suited and would have been prohibitively costly.