Protecting our precious trees

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Feb 2016 in Design Tips, Plants

Oak tree from the wood floor taken with wide angle lense by Lisa Cox

I’m currently working on a project where we have few trees on site that are subject to a Tree Protection Order (TPO).  Obviously I need to be absolutely sure that I create the new garden in a way that will ensure that the trees aren’t damaged so I’ve been taking advice from a professional arborist to ensure that we’re doing things right.

But, even if the trees aren’t subject to a TPO it’s still part of my role as designer to ensure that the creation of the new garden isn’t going to compromise any of the existing trees on site, particularly if they are integral to the design.  It shouldn’t only be protected trees that we take extra care of.

Tree lined track Saint Valery Sur Somme Lisa Cox Designs

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve driven past a site where building works have taken place and beneath the most gorgeous mature trees are piles of rubble and builder’s waste or deliveries of materials waiting to be used on site.  Sometimes the digger is parked there overnight or the area is used to mix up concrete and cement.

I can’t stress how important it is to protect the root zone of any trees you want to keep in the garden.  If you’re embarking on a garden project it’s essential that the root protection zone of any trees you want to keep are cordoned off for the duration of the project, especially at the beginning when there will be heavy machinery on site.

The yew trees at Hampton Court Palace Lisa Cox Garden designs

Trees and plants are pretty robust and I think they try very hard to stay alive, even in the most difficult of circumstances.  But if you want to keep the trees because you love them, it’s got to be worth the effort to keep them as safe as you can.

As a general rule you can estimate the root protection zone by working out the diameter of the tree at 1.5m above the ground and then multiplying this number by 12 which will give you a circle around the tree in which the majority of roots can be found.

Autumn colours in Wales Lisa Cox Garden Designs

But if you’re unsure, it’s worth enlisting the help and advice of a qualified arboriculturalist who can advise you during the design process to ensure that the trees that will be integral to the success of your new garden will stay that way for years to come.

If you’re embarking on a house building project, the same will apply and in some cases you’ll also have to involve the planning office, especially in the case of protected trees which may affect what you’re allowed to do with your house.

But essentially, if we want out trees to thrive and enhance our gardens then we need to do everything in our power to ensure that they flourish for years to come.

Low hedges – a few alternatives to Box

2 Written by Lisa on 6th Oct 2015 in Plants

Box topiary and stone bench in Box, Wiltshire

You may or may not have heard that there’s been an outbreak of box tree caterpillar in London and some of the Home Counties. The caterpillars eat the leaves and produce webbing over their feeding area which can eventually cause the plants to die. Read more

It’s bulb planting time!

0 Written by Lisa on 1st Oct 2015 in Design Tips, Plants

Golden narcissus at RHS Garden Wisley Lisa Cox

I’ve just returned from Surrey after 5 long days planting my project in Weybridge.  No photos yet I’m afraid as it wasn’t looking very photogenic without the lawn and with the protective boards down on the terrace.  But I’ll be popping back at the end of October armed with my camera so I’ll share the pictures with you as soon as I can. Read more

Planting – getting the colour tone right

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Jun 2015 in Design Tips, Plants

RHS Flower Show Cardiff 2015 Lisa Cox A Front Garden for Victoria Park Mazda

When I designed the garden at RHS Flower Show Cardiff I really thought the crowd would be divided about the planting because of the warm and vibrant colours.  But I couldn’t have been more wrong, everyone seemed to love it! Read more

A visit to New Wood Trees in Devon

2 Written by Lisa on 9th Feb 2015 in Inspiration, Plants

New Wood Trees Devon Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I went to visit New Wood Trees on Wednesday, a fabulous nursery in Devon specialising in multi-stem trees.  I’ve sourced a few trees from them in the past, but it was great to finally make a trip there to see the extent of their stock and to meet the owner, Philip Nieuwoudt. Read more

The power of yellow…do you love to hate it?

0 Written by Lisa on 4th Nov 2014 in Design Tips, Plants

Yellow day lilies at Loseley Park hemerocallis

When I first start to talk to clients about plants, the majority of people say that they don’t want any yellow.  From experience what they actually mean is that there’s a particular plant with a particular tone of yellow that they don’t like or want in the garden. Read more

Gardening and Landscaping Mission to the Netherlands Part Two…The Nurseries

2 Written by Lisa on 30th Oct 2014 in Inspiration, Plants

Field grown trees at Boomkwekerij Ebben Nursery Holland Lisa Cox Garden Designs

Earlier this week I shared some images of the Villa Augustus hotel.  But today I want to share some photos of some of the fabulous nurseries we visited whilst we were there.  Most of the images were taken on my phone so they’re not really up to scratch, but I hope you enjoy all the same… Read more

5 trees that work hard in all seasons

0 Written by Lisa on 21st Oct 2014 in Design Tips, Plants

Autumn colours in Wales Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I love the autumn when the leaves start to turn and the colours become warm and vibrant.  This year it seems to be taking a while to get going, in fact yesterday it was a barmy 20 degrees in Surrey, but there are some signs that the trees are turning. Read more

A visit to Sussex Prairies

4 Written by Lisa on 9th Sep 2014 in Inspiration, Plants

Sussex Prairies Lisa Cox Garden Designs

I missed a visit to Sussex Prairies a couple of weeks ago so as the weather was lovely at the weekend we decided to pay a visit.  I’ve been wanting to go for ages! Read more

Calamagrostis…one of my favourite grasses

0 Written by Lisa on 12th Aug 2014 in Garden Flowers, Plants

Contemporary garden design for a modern mews house Sutton 10 `

I love Calamagrostis, or Feather Reed-grass as it’s commonly known, it’s one of my favourite grasses. 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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