Author Archive

A Moment at Dusk

Taking Inspiration from Nature.  I took my dog Oliver for a favourite walk at dusk this evening. It was 5.15pm and still just light enough to make out the path which runs high above and parallel to the sandy strand edging the bay. Known as 'green lanes' around here they are tractor-wide grassy tracks flanked by dry stone walls and hedges. They criss-cross and meander through paddocks and fields, unseen and away from asphalted roads and used almost exclusively by farmers checking on livestock and moving them from pasture to pasture to graze in peace. From the air these tracks are visible, [...]

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Aspire and Specialise

How training as a garden designer will change your whole outlook on life. Aspiring garden designers, just like any students of a new discipline, may have dreams or ambition to design other than domestic or local commercial landscapes. The world of landscape and garden design is just that: a big wide world full of opportunities and challenges. Your design course will give you a thorough grounding in the history of garden design through the ages, in climates and conditions some familiar, others that may be completely alien to the environments and climates you have experienced. You will learn how [...]

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Container Gardening

Designing With Containers – Avoiding Tacky! Almost anything that holds soil and can have drainage holes inserted maybe used for containing plants. Retail outlets stock a vast range of traditional ceramic, terracotta, glass fibre and stone pots, window boxes and containers, some attractive and some hideous. It's important that they are frost proof, so check those imported from Mediterranean or far eastern countries as they may not be. Be careful of pots with a narrow neck, as the plant will be almost impossible to remove once its roots have developed. Avoid plastic pots. They are ugly, clash [...]

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Autumn/Fall–A Design Palette of Bright Orange, Chocolate, Latte, Mustard + Green

The colour green underpins the whole of nature; without green plants we would be unable to breathe or eat. So it is the predominant colour in gardens linking each plot to the surrounding landscape. Even in a highly urban setting there is likely to be one tree or patch of grass within sight. I've noticed that autumn greens often contain more blue than the yellow-infused sharp lime greens of spring. Green also acts as a brilliant foil for every other colour and it is the warmest of these colours that come into play in the autumn or fall season in temperate climates. For some autumn is a sad and [...]

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Changing Course

Thinking of Becoming a Garden Designer? There are a myriad reasons for choosing to study landscape or garden design and perhaps that is why you are reading this blog. You may be a school-leaver or new graduate entranced by the notion of working with plants in the great outdoors. Perhaps you are seeking a new career direction, want to escape the rat race of commuting, can't stand working in an office a moment longer, need a new and exciting challenge, or just want to be your own boss. Often it is several of these. It is never too soon to make a start and it is certainly never too late. I speak [...]

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