Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Garden Design Ideas - Solution for a Small Shallow Garden

This garden in Bracknell, Berkshire is typical of those found on many of the newer estates all over the UK. It is a small plot and the addition of a conservatory has further reduced the size of the garden. It is wide and shallow and overlooked on all sides.

The clients asked for a garden that made the most of the space and took account of boggy areas caused by a nearby stream. They wanted a more secluded area to sit and eat, plus other areas that could be used to make the most of the sunny spots in the garden. The garden has to be especially easy to maintain due to lack of time and the main gardener having recently sustained a back injury.

The new design had to address the slope which runs across the width of the garden. There are existing retaining walls which are to be replaced and a shed which will be removed and replaced with less intrusive storage spaces. The clients have a dog which will use the garden, but also needs to be kept out of the garden when necessary.

The scheme I have designed is drawn on the diagonal to give the garden the appearance of more depth and space. I have rounded the corners of the seating area and water feature area which re-focuses the eye inside the garden rather than allowing it to register only the neighbouring properties. This also gives the garden a greater sense of enclosure and privacy.

I have created a new main seating area in the least overlooked corner of the garden and covered this with a pergola for extra privacy. As this new terrace is in a part of the garden which loses the sun at mid-day it also answers the clients’ requirement for a shaded seating area.

There is also a terrace outside the conservatory doors with a built in barbeque area which will have peripheral cupboards topped with stone to make worktops. A much smaller terrace on the other side of the conservatory is perfect for breakfast on a sunny morning.

All the borders are raised to a height of 450mm which means they can be used as seats. Raised borders also make planting easier to maintain and the plants start off nearly half a metre higher than if planted at ground level and will therefore start providing screening and interest much more quickly.

There is a wall mounted water feature which will comprise a simple steel blade from which water will cascade into a ground level reservoir. This type of water feature is easy to maintain as it requires only periodic topping up of the reservoir. It is also a good idea to remove and clean the filter from the pump occasionally – a very simple task requiring a screwdriver and some soapy water.

Immediately outside the utility room and back door of the property there will be a bike storage shed screened from the main garden by a trellis panel. This area is closed off from the garden with a gate so that the dog can be confined when necessary. Further tool storage will be built into the side of the house in the side passageway from the drive into the back garden.

I'll post updates when construction starts later this year. In the meantime if you would like some garden design ideas for your garden please visit my Web site and feel free to give me a call or drop me an email.


James Todman said...

Really like the design. Definitely answers the client's requirements.

Linsey said...

Thanks, James, glad you like the design. I'll be posting more photos when the project starts building later on this year.

Anonymous said...

Do you have pictures of the garden under development yet? I like the design and am hoping to apply similar to my garden of much the same shape and size.

Hans Pardoel said...

You Linsey, busy bee!!
This designs brings the attention from the homeview to the nice green gardencorner. Clever! I love the way you use craftwork with modern design in not an oldfashion way. What plants do you prefer to use?

Linsey said...

We have just started the build, so I do have some photos, but there's not much to see. I will put them up soon.

If you'd like help adapting the design to your gardens, I am happy to take your survey and re-draw the plan for your particular space. Email me if you would like me to get involved.

Linsey said...

Hans, thanks so much for your kind words. I'm really pleased with this garden and the client loves it. It met their requirements, but was nothing they could have imagined themselves.

We are just building it. I'm about to start the planting and lighting plans. Can't wait until it's finished and I can show photos.