The owner of the main house has magnificent views across open landscape and wanted to ensure these were centre stage from the terraces. The lawn was on a steep slope and so she wanted this more level so the children could play. Another requirement was a garden room to be used as a games room or den for the teenage sons which would not detract from the views. She also wanted new planting, water features and paths for safe passage between her home and the bungalow at the other end of the garden.
It was a pretty complicated site: two houses, many levels, a very irregular fence line and a massive stormwater drain hidden under the back lawn. This was all carefully plotted to ensure we had an accurate picture with which to start. The garden is dominated by the view which is lovely, but there were also opportunities within the garden to create separate paths and routes through it, each either keeping your focus within the space, or revealing a different angle on the landscape beyond.
The garden steps down through a set of terraces behind the house where you can sit and take in the view, or dine and entertain. We also show here the proposed extension. Then at the top of the newly levelled lawn there is a path that connects the garden room, tucked away, to another area for sitting in the shade on a hot day. From here, you can take the main path down past the games room, under the pergola, which was designed to detract from neighbouring roofs, and down to the bungalow, or you can take a route along the other side of the garden which reveals a completely different view.
This shows an aerial shot of the garden with the position of the garden room. It is essential to provide 3D drawings for the client to show what it will actually look like. 2D plans are great, but 3D brings it to life and helps the conversation to hone the design before committing to earth, brick, timber and stone.
This is something many will miss out, however if you don’t specify how a garden is to be built, it is unlikely to end up looking like the garden you intended. Even though we build our own gardens, the detailed and thoughtful translation of concept to build detail enables identification of possible problems and their solutions in advance or opportunities to save the client money. This result in an ability to accurately price and schedule the project.
There was a great deal of earth to move in this project; two weeks of digging to cut the paths, level the lawn and prepare the base for the garden room. Sculpting the earth to create usable space that fits into an elegant design is one of the most pleasurable parts of the job, but it is only the beginning. See the gallery for more before and after shots.