Portfolio - Rural Retreat

This beautiful cottage is situated in the depths of the Kent countryside, surrounded by pastureland. When I first viewed it, the garden was mostly laid down to lawn with a mass of conifers surrounding a silted up pond. Along the roadside there was an overgrown Leylandii hedge which totally dominated the front garden and completely blocked the views of the countryside beyond. The road was a very quiet lane, so it was decided early on that the hedge was unnecessary and needed to be removed, along with some of the older dense conifers. My client wanted his collection of oriental sculpture to be displayed in the garden, so part of my brief was to design a scheme to show them off in the best light. The garden also needed to incorporate a summerhouse which would be used as an outside office, a paved terrace for summer entertaining, and a number of planted areas, each with its own character.

The resulting garden takes one on an exciting journey of discovery.  Each area of the garden is separated either by lawn, banks or hedges with stone or gravel paths leading from one section to next. The two areas of lawn give a feeling of calmness, and contrast well with the vibrant sections of planting. The carefully placed pieces of sculpture act as focal points when viewed from the house or other resting spots around the garden. A bog garden of lush planting surrounds the dredged pond, which now encourages a variety of wildlife - an important element for the continued health of the garden.

Before and During Construction