From the drawing board: A new garden for a client near Redhill

0 Written by Lisa on 18th Dec 2014 in From the drawing board

Last weekend I presented the final designs to a client in South Nutfield, near Redhill.  It’s a complicated site with steep levels which always makes for some head scratching but at the same time, gives such scope for a more interesting garden.

I thought I’d start with a couple of concept sketches and pictures of the garden now.

Redhill garden before redesign Lisa Cox Designs

Concept design sketch Lisa Cox Garden Designs

The garden is already terraced, but when the new house extension is built, there will no longer be anywhere to sit as the existing terrace will be covered over.

The sleeper steps are also really dangerous – the dimensions of the steps aren’t right i.e. the tread isn’t big enough, and they get really slippery in the winter.

Garden before redesign near Redhill Lisa Cox Designs copy

Concept sketch Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Working with levels can be expensive as terracing a garden requires retaining structures if you want to move soil around.  I’ve tried to work with the existing terraces as much as possible to keep the cost down, but at the same time give the garden more character and interest.

This is the final design…

Presentation Plan near Redhill Surrey Lisa Cox Garden Designs


The main terrace is now on the first level which will involve a bit of earth moving, but will still work with the existing terraces.

It’s so important when you’re working with levels that you think about what’s happening to the soil that you need to take away.  Ideally you want to keep as much of it on site as possible otherwise you just spend good money on removing waste from site.

Cross section drawings are essential if you are to get your head around what’s there now and how it relates to the new garden you are trying to create.

Cross section drawings of levels Lisa Cox Garden Designs


Construction details are also essential to ensure that the drawings communicate properly to the landscaper.  It’s really important, for example, that the exact dimensions and angle of the sloped wall for the bottom steps was thought through and calculated properly otherwise it may never look right.

Construction drawing main steps Lisa Cox Garden Designs

The second flight of steps was also important to get right as the wall becomes free-standing at the bottom of the steps.

Construction drawing of main steps Lisa Cox Garden Designs

For this project I also put together some isometric drawings of the main elements.  This really helps the landscaper to understand the design vision but also tests my ideas and ensures that I’ve thought through the details properly.

Isometric drawing steps Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Isometric drawing of steps Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Isometric drawing of steps from utility room Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Isometric drawing of main steps Lisa Cox Garden Designs


There’ll be some delay now before this garden is built because my clients are having some building work done on the house first.  They wanted to plan the garden at the same time so that they had a sense of what was happening and could manage the build with the garden in mind.

I think it will make a huge difference to how they feel about the garden and, just as importantly, how they use the space.  I can’t wait to see it all finished in a couple of years’ time.



(Designs & Images © Lisa Cox Garden Designs)


A trip to Box Hill at dawn – Part two

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Dec 2014 in Inspiration

Frosty morning on Box Hill Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I hope you enjoyed the photographs I shared on Wednesday of my trip to Box Hill last Saturday at dawn. Read more

A trip to Box Hill at Dawn – Part One

0 Written by Lisa on 10th Dec 2014 in Inspiration

Golden sunrise over from Box Hill Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Last Saturday, as it was forecast to be a bright and frosty morning, I got up really early and went to Box Hill to take some photographs. Read more

From the drawing board: New garden for a client in Richmond

0 Written by Lisa on 5th Dec 2014 in From the drawing board

Concept sketch back garden Richmond

I wrote a blog post last week about tackling really small gardens which was triggered by a project I’ve been working on in Richmond. Read more

Fabulous Fire bowls by The Firepit Company

0 Written by Lisa on 2nd Dec 2014 in Garden accessories, Inspiration

The Fire Pit Company English Country Ball

I’ve recently come across these wonderful fire bowls from The Firepit Company.  What better way to encourage you to spend more time out in the garden after dark, even on a chilly evening when you wouldn’t normally sit outside. Read more

Tackling really small gardens

0 Written by Lisa on 25th Nov 2014 in Design Tips

Bletchingley courtyard sketch Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I’ve just been working on the designs for a client in Richmond who has the tiniest of gardens, just 25m2 to be precise.  Spaces this small can often be more challenging to design because it’s every square inch counts. Read more

Inspiration from Lyme Regis

0 Written by Lisa on 19th Nov 2014 in Inspiration

Lyme Regis bay Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I spent a few glorious hours in Lyme Regis yesterday so I thought I’d share some of the photographs I took whilst I was there. Read more

Introducing garden joiner – Jonathan Blackburn

0 Written by Lisa on 14th Nov 2014 in From the drawing board, Inspiration

garden bench peg back detail by Jonathan Blackburn

I’m always looking for talented craftsmen (and women!) to work with and earlier this year I met Jonathan Blackburn, a brilliant garden joiner based in Oxfordshire. Read more

Where do you get your inspiration from?

4 Written by Lisa on 12th Nov 2014 in Inspiration

The South Downs Way Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Everyone needs a bit of inspiration now and again and for me it’s not only integral for keeping my design work interesting, but it’s also part of keeping myself energised, positive and happy. Read more

A walk to find some inspiration

0 Written by Lisa on 7th Nov 2014 in Inspiration

Perovskia at St Marys Church Leatherhead Lisa Cox

I was feeling in need of a bit of inspiration yesterday so I took my camera with me for a blast of fresh air.  Leatherhead has some lovely and interesting architecture and St Mary’s Church is really interesting with its flint walls and public garden which always looks great in late summer and early autumn. Read more

Lisa Cox Welcome

I specialise in helping families to turn their gardens into an extension of their home and into a space that can be used and enjoyed all year round.

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