Period: May 2016 - Oct 2016
Our client had worked on this garden over the years but it had got to a stage that some serious work was needed to bring it back to a maintainable state. Situated close to the river Dargle the soil was fertile and a good sandy loam. There were some well-established trees such as a dawn redwood (metasequoia), Turkish oak, weeping willow and pine. We had to selectively remove several trees, one which needed specialist tree surgeons as it was leaning towards the cottage.
The brief was quite simple. The client wanted a maintainable garden that worked for their family. They also wanted the option of the placement of a marquee for future events. I designed a series of pathways once the clearance work was completed. This was framed with treated pine wood and finish with gold dust. The ground was regraded and top soiled prior to seeding with a specially formulated seed specifically blended for shaded areas.
There was also a problem with deer on the property so we installed new black mesh fencing which blended with the existing forest and did not stand out. This needed to be 2.5 meters in height. Our planting plan reflects this and careful plant selection was critical for this landscape design to work. We designed a Rhododendron walk along the river side and beside this developed a fernery with some interest fern varieties in the more shady, damp region of the garden.
We built a cedar gazebo to draw the eye and create an area to dine in the summer months. Beside this we built a fire pit made from some cast iron water pipe we found in the garden. This again required specialist equipment to maneuver into place. Alongside the river back we planted some clump forming bamboo such as red dragon & blue dragon. We also planted a few hundred Liriope muscari to help retain the river bank which is subject to erosion.
Closer to the house we needed to redesign the driveway and edging this with a material in keeping with the property. We installed flood drains at the gate area in case of future flooding. We created mounds close the house which was planted with two specimen Japanesse maples. We needed to allow for ample parking and plenty of colour on entering the property. The driveway was lined with box and we planted a lot of allium and other spring bulbs. Salvias were clumped together and Nadina domestica formed the structure to the planted bed. Hydragea Limelight and Annabella will fill and develop with time.