Larkfield Gdns, Edinburgh.

SMALL CITY GARDEN DESIGN

Story – This garden measures 10m x 7m. It slopes from the rear gate down towards this 3 story townhouse. The brief was to create an easy to maintain ‘wild garden’ with areas to entertain and relax. A decent sized hexagonal summerhouse was ordered with a small patio area to allow seating outside of the summerhouse.

The client also wished some lighting to allow use of the garden throughout the year and day, and provide interest from within the house at night. Existing on start of works was a deck area and a sloping lawn. The design aims to create many rotes around the garden to create a feeling increased size, exploration as well as a variety of planting areas. Planting was to have year round interest with slightly naturalistic/wild edge to it. A combination of conifers and other large evergreen shrubs created a framework to wrap an assortment of wildish herbaceous plants such as herbs, grasses and hedgerow plants. Along with these are espalier apples, grape vines, clematis armandii and a variety of ground cover such as thyme, sweet woodruff and epimedium.

The main path s-curves through the full width of the garden up to the rear gate. A hazel hurdle tucks away three wheelie bins up out the way here. A small patio is located midway with the only steps, with slate edge risers, along access through. Paths also lead down the side of the townhouse and through the middle of the central beds, giving a networks of interconnecting routes throughout the garden. This increases the feeling of space and interest.

The paving is a slate with a multitude of colouring throughout it, it is dark and formal when wet and light and rustic when dry. This works really well with the overall feel and aim of the garden which seeks to find a comfortable balance between the formal amd informal.

No skips were used for this project as everything onsite was re-used and material brought in didn’t need to leave again. Under the new build lawn was an assortment of issues from compaction to construction rubbish. All areas for planting were completely overhauled and the process actually provided all the hardcore required for the paved areas. Organic matter was dug through the existing soil after the hard compaction base 20″ deep down had been broken up ( a lot easier for the builders to do before they bury it under ropey topsoil!) Incredible first year growth has occured in the gardens first year thanks to a heady mix of rain and sun this summer! It is also indicative of the benefit of dealing with new build compaction and adding organic matter.

The lighting works really well thanks to help from MGD Electrical, and the overall garden in it’s first year is a reat space to be in. A few plants are already needing to checked back and controlled, something you usually expect in the 2nd or 3rd years of a new garden.