Design Tips

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?

Today I want to talk about planting which, despite being the last segment in the garden design and build process, is very much integral to the overall look and feel of the garden.

Planting is the element that brings the design together and it never ceases to amaze me how it can lift a space.  It’s also the element that people often feel most connected to.

Lavender by old flint wall at Cherkley Court

Which plants you choose will of course very much depend upon the conditions you have on site.  If you have clay soil, for example, then you won’t be able to plant things that thrive on sandy soil.  But, rather than talking about soil, aspect and drainage in this post, I want to give you a few pointers to help you choose the right sort of plants.

Front gardens are the only part of your outside space that you’ll walk through whatever the weather, season and time of day so it’s important they look good all year round.  This is where evergreen plants come into their own.  Front gardens work best if the majority of plants remain in leaf throughout the year.

Pittosporum Tom Thumb leaves

Something like box balls or Pittosporum Tom Thumb look great framing a pathway or defining a change in direction and as they’re reasonably well-behaved, keep the front looking neat and tidy.  Larger shrubs can work too, especially if you need to screen off a bad view or want a bit more privacy.

You can also use scented plants in the front.  Sarcococca is an understated evergreen shrub which, at this time of year, has the most delicious scent.  Plant one near the front door and you’ll be greeted with perfume when you come home.

sarcococca confusa

Use bulbs or shrubs that flower at different times of the year to give bursts of colour throughout the seasons.  I’m not saying that you shouldn’t use herbaceous perennials or deciduous shrubs, but it’s important that your garden has some curb appeal in winter too.

Low maintenance plants are key too as, unless you’re a really keen gardener, you’re unlikely to want to spend hours tending to the front of the house.  Get to know the plants well so that you can be sure they’ll behave in the space their allocated.

All planting schemes work best if you limit the pallet of plants you use.  Repeat planting in groups or swathes creates a rhythm that leads your eye through the garden.  Choose one or two structural plants that hold the scheme together and your garden will feel balanced and look smart, the perfect welcome to you and your visitors!

 

(Images: Lisa Cox)

 

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

Front garden design tips: Considering security

0 Written by Lisa on 31st Jan 2014 in Design Tips

Front garden Wandsworth by Lisa Cox Designs

Normally front gardens are easily accessible to others so there are a few considerations you should take into account when you’re planning your front garden. Read more

Front garden design tips: What surface is best?

0 Written by Lisa on 28th Jan 2014 in Design Tips

Front garden Wandsworth Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Last week I talked you through the layout of your front garden so now it’s time to start thinking about the hard landscaping materials.  The surface you choose will probably end up boiling down to cost but, whatever you decide upon, it must feel right with the look and style of your house as well as it’s setting. Read more

Front garden design tips: 5 ways to keep it simple

0 Written by Lisa on 24th Jan 2014 in Design Tips

Concept sketch sutton front garden Lisa Cox Designs

Welcome to the first edition of my blog series about front gardens.  I’ve written about them before but I hope that I’ll be able to give you some tips to help you to improve what you have.  Whether you’re ready to start again from scratch or just make a few changes I hope I’ll give you some inspiration to have a go. Read more

Giving your home some kerb appeal

0 Written by Lisa on 21st Jan 2014 in Design Tips

Front garden in Wandsworth by Lisa Cox Designs

There was an interesting article in The Sunday Times’ home supplement on Sunday about revitalising your home. It offered lots of advice and ideas about ways you can improve your home. These ranged from inexpensive decluttering to full-scale structural changes. Read more

Why not phase the installation of your garden lighting?

0 Written by Lisa on 13th Jan 2014 in Design Tips

Walled garden in Berkshire - Lighting by Ornamental Garden Lighting

Lighting in the garden takes on various functions including lighting a pathway, improving security and creating a mood or aesthetic that enhances your garden at night. Read more

A visit to Horsham Stone in West Sussex

1 Written by Lisa on 7th Nov 2013 in Design Tips

Horsham Stone Quarry Lisa Cox Garden Designs

On Monday I visited the Horsham Stone quarry in West Sussex with my local Society of Garden Designer’s cluster group. Read more

Dealing with sloped gardens

2 Written by Lisa on 29th Oct 2013 in Design Tips

View of deck from under willow tree Lisa Cox Garden Designs Surrey

Sloped gardens can be a bit daunting to deal with, but they provide an easy way to make a garden more interesting because you can use what’s already there to your advantage.  Of course flat gardens can be interesting too, but a naturally sloped space will present different opportunities that you might not otherwise have. Read more

A great front garden will make you love your home more

0 Written by Lisa on 22nd Oct 2013 in Design Tips, Inspiration

Concept sketch for front garden in Wandsworth

I went to see a potential client in Clapham on Saturday. They live in a beautiful Victorian town house and are slowly restoring its original features. They’re very keen to improve the look and feel of the front garden first, the back garden will come later. 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.

read more >

Sign up to the Newsletter
Thank you for signing up.
Let me create the Right Garden For you click here >
Find me elsewhere
Twitter
Website

Websites by Flourish, Guildford, Surrey