Design Tips

Plans for small gardens – circles can be tricky beasts

0 Written by Lisa on 19th Aug 2014 in Design Tips

Cobble paving by Maggie Howarth at Gresgarth Hall

Small gardens are often more challenging to design because generally people want to fit in the same list of things they’d want if their garden was half an acre.

When space is tight and restricted you’ll find it much easier to use a geometric layout as the shapes work so much more easily together and generally sit within the confines of the boundaries in a much more comfortable way.

It’s also easier to link squares and rectangles whilst leaving enough space for planting.

Circles are trickier beasts, preferring not to be connected to other shapes.  There are ways to link them together, but generally you need a bit of space to allow them to work together harmoniously.

informal path to summerhouse East Horsley Garden Design Lisa Cox

So what do you do if you prefer sweeping curves and don’t want to see the crisp edges of a square or rectangular terrace?

Using the planting to bring an air of informality to a space enables you to soften the sharp crisp edges and create space that is much more free flowing. Make a conscious decision to allow the planting to spill over onto the paving and the curves and fuzzy edges will occur naturally.

Lavender hedges at the Chelsea Physic Garden

This can work really well on pathways too where you’d much prefer to see an informal walkway rather than a long and straight path. The only consideration if you’re going this route is to allow a bit more width for the pathway so that when the plants do spill over, you’re still able to walk along it without stepping on the plants.

Bench in Homebase Garden RHS Chelsea 2014 Lisa Cox Designs

Lawns are slightly different as letting the plants spill over will just end up in dead patches of grass, but if you choose soft foliage and informal planting then it will have a less formal feel to it. Circular lawns can work of course, but in small spaces the curve is very tight and this makes mowing more than a bit challenging.

 

 

 

(Images: Lisa Cox)

Some planting design tips to help you along

0 Written by Lisa on 15th Aug 2014 in Design Tips

Planting Oxshott Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Planning a planting scheme takes time.  There’s so much to think about and consider to get it right.  As well as the constraints of the site (soil/aspect/drainage), you need to think about the aesthetic qualities of the plant (shape, form, foliage, colour) as well as how well and how long it performs for and of course how long you have to wait for it to become fully grown. Read more

Good design is all about balance

0 Written by Lisa on 4th Jul 2014 in Design Tips

Side garden restructured Lisa Cox Designs

I’ve recently been working with a client in Woking who, after a big project to renovate the house, needed some help to lift the garden.  They’d already installed the paving and brought in lots of mature specimen plants, but the garden just hadn’t really come to life and they didn’t feel very inspired to spend time out there. Read more

Create your garden course – Week 2

0 Written by Lisa on 14th May 2014 in Design Tips, From the drawing board

Week 2 create your garden workshop Decor Cafe Lisa Cox

Yesterday was week 2 of my Create Your Garden course at The Decor Cafe in Putney, which I’m running with friend and fellow garden designer, Sarah Speller. Read more

Create your garden course – Week 1

0 Written by Lisa on 7th May 2014 in Design Tips, From the drawing board

Design your own garden course Lisa Cox The Decor Cafe

It was the first week of my new garden styling and design course at The Decor Cafe yesterday.  I’m running it with friend and fellow designer, Sarah Speller, and it will run over three consecutive Tuesday mornings. Read more

Make the most of your garden course – just 4 weeks left to book!

0 Written by Lisa on 4th Apr 2014 in Design Tips

Working through a sketch with attendee at The Decor Cafe garden design workshop Lisa Cox

It’s just four weeks until my new ‘how to make the most of your garden’ course starts at The Décor Café in Putney.  I’m running the course with my friend and fellow garden designer, Sarah Speller.  As you know, I’ve delivered workshops before, but this one will be slightly different because it will run over three consecutive weeks. Read more

My outdoor living article for M&S Bank

0 Written by Lisa on 27th Mar 2014 in Design Tips, Inspiration

Designing your garden for outdoor living article M&S Bank Lisa Cox Designs

I’m excited to show you the finished article I’ve written for M&S Bank which went live on their website this week. Read more

Ilex crenata – a brilliant alternative to Box

0 Written by Lisa on 14th Feb 2014 in Design Tips, Plants

Victorian driveway edging Lisa Cox Garden Designs

If you read my blog on Tuesday then you’ll know that I planted a double hedge in the front garden in North London.  My client was a bit worried about box blight so we decided instead to use Ilex crenata (Japanese Holly) for the low hedge. Read more

Front garden design tips: What about the plants?

6 Written by Lisa on 7th Feb 2014 in Design Tips, Plants

Front garden design London Lisa Cox

This is the last post in my blog series about front gardens.  I hope you’ve found it useful and now feel inspired to tackle your own? Read more

Front garden design tips: Storage

2 Written by Lisa on 4th Feb 2014 in Design Tips

Bike storage Garde Trellis Company

As I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, front gardens are predominantly functional spaces which means that there are things to accommodate that you don’t necessarily want to look at. 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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