Project Update (1) 2017

I spent the first part of this year predominantly completing projects begun in 2016 – some build completions, lots of planting design and even more planting implementation. These are just some of the projects that kept me busy from January to the end of June…


Pond with waterfall in the rear garden of a new build site in rural Fife. The garden was completed at the end of summer 2016. Trees and shrubs were planted in the autumn of that year, with pond plants and perennials in spring 2017.  The garden just needs huge swathes of spring bulbs and it will be ready for gradual maturation


Front garden of the same site, with sinuous pathways, central lawn around existing cherry tree and deep shrubs borders which will eventually soften the long fenced boundaries of the garden. A mixed beech hedge is establishing nicely along the front of the property. The garden was built by Fife landscape firm, Creating Eden Ltd.


Another garden project built over the winter months – the terraces on this steeply sloping site on the Fife coast took 6 months to complete. Stone terraces and a winding pathway march down the garden, with oak-faced shrub terraces on each side to soften garden boundaries. This garden was planted in phases, and in time the journey from the top patio to the bottom lawned area will pass through different planting zones, each with their own character. The garden was built by Fife landscape firm, Creating Eden Ltd.


Some gardens are developed with active involvement from the clients. This mature garden in North Lanarkshire was in need of a facelift. The wooden fences around the garden (all 44m) were cleaned and stained black to create a non-intrusive visual boundary, many large conifers were removed and existing raised beds were extended (all by the clients). The soggy lawn in the rear garden was lifted and replaced with a mixture of paving and gravel to create a series of easy-care outdoor rooms that better suit the clients’ retired lifestyle. Hardscape work was carried out by Dunblane-based Kare Gardens Ltd.


The site entrance to this property leads to a triangular patio where the clients often eat out in the summer months. Two feature mirrors, stained black to match the gate, have been installed on the previously dull garage wall to throw more light into this area and create an interesting trompe l’oeil effect. Acrylic mirrors can be used to great effect in gardens and is a regularly used Shades of Green device.


This front garden in Perthshire was transformed last autumn and fully planted in spring 2017. Previously a small lawn with overgrown borders containing large shrubs, roses, herbaceous perennials and potatoes (the client is an avid veggie gardener), the new garden boasts rebuilt broad steps to the front door, a snaking gravel path, two small seating areas and lots of room for new mixed planting. The client is a soon-to-be-retired plant-a-holic and can’t wait to spend time in her new flowery haven. Garden built by Kare Gardens Ltd


This client in Stirlingshire contacted me in 2016 having been let down by a number of landscape firms who had visited but never been in touch again. The garden layout design was fitted in between other projects and the client arranged for the hardscape work to be done by people that he knew. I visited and provided ongoing advice as the front and back garden transformations moved along, and provided detailed planting advice which the  client has implemented himself this year. The garden is hugely improved and the client has really enjoyed managing the project himself. The photo below shows what this passageway down the side of the house looked like before…


…narrow, dark passageway with several level changes.


The last project I want to share for the first part of 2017  is another one that I fitted into my already busy work schedule because the clients have a very poorly little boy and they wanted to be be able to get him out into a lovely garden for sensory stimulation in what might be his last summer.  They moved into a bungalow on the Fife coast and this was the uninspiring rear garden they inherited. The brief asked for a level patio and paths, an area of lawn, plants with fragrance and tactile properties and an overall calming space for parents, carers and child to enjoy.


The clients had originally asked for organic curves in the garden, but this is often hard to accomplish on small sites. The final layout combined interlocking squares of lawn softened by deep borders, plus raised beds alongside the paths and on the garage walls to provide a sense of planted enclosure. The area of fence next the patio was kept clear for wall art, fairy lights and other sensory features. Once again mirror trellis was used in two different areas to trick the eye into making the garden  seem larger. Everyone is delighted…Garden built by Creating Eden Ltd

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