The clients wanted a complete redesign of the front garden of their Edwardian house in south-east London, taking out the lawn, cypress hedge and existing planting. A neat but relaxed style of garden was desired, that would provide privacy along the 50ft frontage, not require too much maintenance, and provide access to the garage.
As the garden was wide but rather shallow, it made sense to compartmentalise the space. This was done with a main path in coursed Yorkstone leading to the front door, with rectangles of gravel either side, edged in red clay brick, and a path running laterally also in red clay brick leading from the drive to the main path. The existing tarmac drive was removed and replaced with gravel to match the rest of the design. A planting scheme of mixed shrubs and perennials consisting in the main of drought resistant hardy plants was designed so as to blur the straight lines of the hardscape, spilling out somewhat onto paths and gravel to give the hoped-for relaxed look. A stone bench was included to help centre the garden around the gravelled area in front of the bay window. Along the main path and either side of the front door, fragrant shrubs, perennials and climbers take turns to perfume the air.
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