Garden Design Service
Based in Essex
Designing your garden is a collaboration, translating your thoughts into a fully-fledged garden. From the first contact through to completion, you can be assured of a friendly, personal, and professional approach to each stage of the process. Read on to find out how your garden can be transformed into a space you will love and use.
During the initial discussion, I would ask about the broad requirements for your garden. For example, the approximate size of the plot, whether this was a complete redesign or the redesign of a small part of the garden. I would then arrange a meeting with you at the site location depending on whether this is a private or commercial project.
At this first meeting I shall make an assessment of the plot and explore with yourself what style of garden you are looking for. Your preferences on colour, and all other personal requirements are taken into account to understand the demands of the space and how these fit with the style. I would also discuss with you the budget set aside for the project to ensure the design is in harmony with the financial commitment being made.
Following this meeting I will draft a quotation for you clearly outlining my fees for survey, concept process, design visualisation, working/technical drawings, professional fees and any additional design items such as 3D images of the new garden. In this way you can make an informed decision on your garden project, and that it’s aligned with your budget before committing to it.
Once the brief and fees are agreed by you, the next part of the process is to survey your garden in terms of exact dimensions, topography, orientation, existing planting and soil type. Identifying as early as possible natural hazards such as poor drainage, prevailing wind direction or perhaps where potential frost pockets may occur in winter months, and likewise establishing where man-made underground structures are present such as drains, soakaways as well as gas and water services, or electric power lines.
Additionally, I use as much photographic and video material as reference points during the Concept phase. For larger, more complex plots I would employ a professional landscape surveyor.
Once I have gathered all the information from the survey together with the signed brief, I would create scaled, coloured, Concept drawings in digital format, together with mood boards and sketches indicating the layout and movement through the garden. The drawing will also indicate the type of landscaping materials and the style of planting for your new garden, which can be viewed on screen or in a printed format.
I will then arrange another visit with you to go through all the drawings explaining the reasoning behind the concept. This provides you with your first view of the layout and theme of the garden and how it will be transformed. The Concept is the embryonic stage of a new garden and during this meeting you will have the opportunity to discuss any amendments you may want to make to the design, so it can be crafted into the final Concept and onto the working drawings. I normally include up to two rounds of amends to any Concept.
Once you have approved and signed off the Concept, I then create digital working drawings with all dimensions, together with any sectional or technical drawings. I will also manage planning permissions and all administrative tasks, to ensure this aspect of garden planning runs smoothly. In addition I can supply detailed lighting plans, which show how the lighting will work in your new garden. As I use a digital format for my garden drawings, amendments at this stage are more straightforward and quicker to deliver.
Ensuring you find the right landscaping company is essential to your garden planning. The right company will be used to not just working with paving and cement, they will also have access to bricklayers, carpenters, steel workers and electricians.
I am happy to assist in the identification of landscape companies or make recommendations of landscapers I have worked with in the past to support the build phase of the project, including analysis of proposals and tender documentation and provide you and the chosen landscaper support throughout the build phase of your project.
If you have requested a planting plan, this can be formalised from the original concept into a working document, which can be used to complete the vision you had of your garden. I have a number of contacts within the nursery industry enabling me to access cost-effective solutions for planting up your garden turning your new landscape into a dream garden.
If you have chosen to allow me plant up your garden, I will create an ongoing maintenance plan for you and schedule in four seasonal visits over the following year to monitor how your garden is progressing. Finally, so you are never left ‘high and dry’ so to speak, I am happy for you to contact me for advice or queries about maintenance and garden design in Essex.