Chelsea Garden Design
The clients are a young professional couple who had just finished major renovation work on their house in Chelsea and were in need of a designer to create a garden that would compliment the strong architecture of the house. The modern, formal garden design was to encompass a large entertaining space, lawn, seating areas, low maintenance planting and a hidden shed.
The only feature retained as part of the overall Chelsea Garden design, was a Lilac tree positioned towards the back of the garden. This became a key focal point, around which the strong geometry of the garden design was formed. A priority was to improve the view of a large imposing building at the end of the garden, this was overcome by rendering the wall and painting it a soft greyish purple that would highlight the Lilac tree and recede into the garden.
Photos by Marianne Majerus
The boundary walls are a mix of rendered blocks painted off white (to reduce glare) and horizontal slatted Balau hardwood trellis that creates beautiful patterns on the sawn York stone. The garden seating is provided with 3 permanently positioned rendered benches, capped with hardwood timber that are offset, drawing the eye in a zig zag down the length of the garden, with an additional cantilevered stone bench tucked into the corner. Two additional trees are carefully positioned to further emphasize this movement, a Prunus 'Kanzan' and Amelanchier Lamarckii, the latter providing much needed shade on the deck. The entertaining space is a large area of hardwood deck, with Scottish cobbles providing a neat detail and hiding many of the lighting and irrigation cables. The lighting throughout the garden is subtle, uplighting focal trees and shrubs, with practical lighting for the BBQ and deck. The client was also keen to install a sound system which is linked up to the touch pad control technology inside.
Throughout this delightful Chelsea garden, the colours used are very much a reflection of the interior, a soft palette of purple, magenta and buff grey. This was particularly emphasized in the planting of deep purple Heuchera, Phormium 'Sundowner', Penstemon 'Sour Grapes' and Verbena bonariensis to name a few, with the emphasis on white and cream planting against the rear purple wall. The overall effect is of a contemporary garden with a strong geometry, that is softened through skillful planting.