Garden Design News

Winter Blues

With the promise of longer days , brighter mornings, and the glimmer of sunshine casting beautiful shadows across the frosty lawn, now is the time to start planning your garden for the year ahead.

Early in the year offers the best opportunity to see the garden in its ‘naked’ state, where there may be views to enhance, neighbours to screen or evergreen structure to add.  Endeavour to make the garden enticing at all times of the year, its there to be enjoyed to tempt you out, even on a cold winters day.

Always allow for seasonal interest. I love the moment when the first bulbs start shooting, or when the flowers of Amelanchier appear before any leaves have emerged. Likewise the early heady scent of the unassuming Sarcoccoa often surprises with a powerful aroma as you walk down a road, mingled with Mahonia, and an innocent bank of snowdrops taking credit for the fragrance on offer.

Then come the spring flowers bounding through, cheering us up just when we need it, having survived another long cold winter. Without these wonderful moments a garden would be very static and unwelcoming.


Continue reading Winter Blues.

Trends in Garden Design

Only two years ago, we were writing here about Cor-ten steel in the garden. Since then, we have continued to design numerous gardens with a Cor-ten touch, its warmth and versatility as a material make it invaluable to us. 

Continue reading Trends in Garden Design.

Summer Gardens

It seems that Summer is full of new projects and busy schedules, with landscapers and designers all reporting lots of enquiries and job confirmations. This is great news for the industry as perhaps people are investing more in extending and improving their homes and garden spaces, rather then selling up and moving out. 

Here at London Garden Designer we have some challenging and interesting projects underway, and a few almost finished building. We look forward to taking some Summer garden photos to post later on this year.


Continue reading Summer Gardens.

Spring planting

Its almost Spring and the office has been busy with new design projects. We are continuing to use CorTen steel in some of our designs, and also Zinc and Copper. We love trying out new materials and it provides us with constant challenges that we embrace. As the weather warms up we will be heading back to some of our favourite gardens to take photos.

Continue reading Spring planting.

Indoor Planting on a Grand Scale

During the summer, we had the chance to work again with D&D London who own some of the most exciting restaurants, bars and hotels in the capital. The Blue Bird Restaurant in Chelsea, was undergoing a massive refurbishment , for which we were asked to propose a fresh new design that would include mature indoor trees as well as an English country side feel within the dining area. This was quite a logistical challenge and an exciting introduction to indoor planting on a massive scale ! Four months later, the place is open again and looks fabulous. The atmosphere created by the nine superb trees Bucida buceras (one is almost 6m tall!), the ferns, grasses and other low planting is dramatic but enchanting. The experience has given us the taste for similar projects, in realizing the impact that greenery can have indoors when implemented realistically. We are currently finishing the planting for a Michelin Star restaurant as well as a Secret Garden at the South Place Hotel in Moorgate, Central London, plus 2 other new restaurants for D & D in London and Leeds, to be opened in the New Year.

Of course our domestic projects continue to be some of our favourites. One of these is a large garden in Hampstead, with an interesting water feature that will keep our landscapers busy up until Christmas.

Continue reading Indoor Planting on a Grand Scale.

Summer Gardens

Summer can often be a difficult time in the garden, the burst of fresh Spring growth has gone and by August many of the flowering herbaceous plants have slipped into oblivion. This is why it is so important to plan your garden with a succession of blooms or interesting foliage in mind. Some of my favoruites for late summer flowers are Anemone x hyrida Whirlwind, Phlox Mount Fuji and Geranium Rozanne ( the latter flowers continuously through May to late Autumn.

Continue reading Summer Gardens.

Spring on Hampstead Heath

My favourite time of year is Spring on Hampstead Heath. Every tree is positively bursting with the promise of fresh green leaves and blossom. The Beech trees ( Fagus sylvatica), are particularily majestic, their branches casting cool, deep shadows on the ground beneath, where bluebells thrive in the dry but shallow rooting system, their azure blue nodding bells casting a delicate scent through the air.


Continue reading Spring on Hampstead Heath.

Winter Planning in the Garden

Now is the perfect moment to start planning and designing your garden space. Are you thinking about a new terrace, a new planting scheme or an overhaul of a mature but overgrown garden? Perhaps you are having house building work done and will need a garden design to work seamlessly with the new extension, adding an attractive backdrop to your views out.

Get in touch! And our team at London Garden Designer would be happy to talk about your projects and help you realize them.


Continue reading Winter Planning in the Garden.

Corten Garden Design Features

Approaching December already, it’s this time of year when we take a look at what we have accomplished during these eleven months. Reviewing our latest designs and gardens, CorTen has become more and more a signature feature material, adding texture and an atmosphere in the landscape.

Used as a background to offer contrast with a vivid planting palette or as a piece of art, CorTen is always welcome to create a modern touch. In our small London gardens, details are essentials to appreciate the depth of work involved in a well thought out design. Alongside brickwork or timber, the warmth of Cor-Ten is a welcome touch, especially in those grey days still to come…

Have a look at out latest pictures on our projects page to see some examples.

Continue reading Corten Garden Design Features.

Autumn Gardens

With lots of garden builds still in full flow, and designs underway, we are looking forward to some new projects that have just come in. One of the gardens is a beautiful established garden tucked away in Islington,  and has plently of scope and potential to add a contemporary twist to a traditional space.

Continue reading Autumn Gardens.

Summer Garden Design Projects

With Summer around the corner we are in full swing with a number of garden builds completed and some exciting new projects on the drawing board.


Continue reading Summer Garden Design Projects.

Spring Gardens

 With Spring around the corner London Garden Designer has a number of projects underway. We are halfway through a 2 acre project in Staines, with the hedging installed, swimming pool shell complete and the Garden Lodge built, we are hoping to be laying paving and adding the final plants in the next 6 weeks.

Back in London we have 2 projects mid build in Islington and Highbury, and will be starting a restaurant forecourt in a few weeks.Other designs underway, should see more projects starting the construction phase soon.

Continue reading Spring Gardens.

Autumn Colour

 A recent trip to the magnificent Westonbirt Arboretum was a real inspiration. The Acer walk was like a firework display of deep reds, yellows, purples and burnt orange. This proves to us once again the importance of planting trees within a garden that can produce year round interest in the form of colour changing foliage and berries.

We have recently planted a dramatic avenue of Acer Rubrum at a project in Wentworth, even with the leaves now falling, they form a fantastic silhouette of red tinged branches against the evergreen backdrop.

Continue reading Autumn Colour.

Silver Gilt Medal Winner at Hampton Court

 London Garden Designer was delighted to receive a Silver Gilt Medal for our Conceptual Garden 'Greed' at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show 2014. The garden was one of the Seven deadly sins and caused some heated discussions amongst the Judges of this years category.

We are really pleased with the finished result and proud of the excellent finish and team effort by Clinton Wootten and his landscapers. The public have enjoyed discussing the concept and underlying message we are portraying.

The Conceptual Category was introduced by the RHS to provoke and inspire, and we very much enjoyed creating a garden that could achieve that goal.


Continue reading Silver Gilt Medal Winner at Hampton Court.

Conceptual Gardens 2014

London Garden Designer is delighted to have been selected as one of the conceptual gardens for the RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show 2014. The theme for this year is the Seven Deadly Sins and our garden represents Greed.

The deadly sin of greed condems the eternal for the temporary, yet one man cannot be rich without another being deprived.The garden depicts a confessionary, expressing the duality between Judge and Sinner, whilst simultaneously presenting the viewer with a dilema.


Continue reading Conceptual Gardens 2014.

Landscape design for Winter Gardens

 Depite the heavy rain and cold weather the majority of landscape designers will continue to work on project builds throughout the winter. Progress may be slower, and we have to build a wet weather contingency into our schedule, along with provision for any days where it may be sub zero, and certain tasks may need to be delayed. It is usually possible however to work around these problems and get on with other construction. Of course one of the benefits to the client of buidling through the winter is making use of the rootball season for large hedging and trees. This can significantly reduce overall budget costs.

We began a new landscape build the first week of January in a lovely Islington Courtyard that is more sheltered than most gardens from the inclement weather and hope to be finished by the end of Feb.

Work continues on a front and back garden in Muswell Hill, which will be planted up in mid March just catching the end of the rootball season.

Other projects about to start are :


Continue reading Landscape design for Winter Gardens.

SGD Awards

Sara Jane Rothwell is delighted to have been selected as a finalist for the prestigious SGD Awards. 

The winners of all 18 awards will be announced at The SGD Awards ceremony on 24 January 2014.  The event promises to be one of the highlights of the garden design calendar.  Look out for tickets, which go on sale in October.

Visit the SGD Awards website to see images of all 35 shortlisted projects.

Continue reading SGD Awards.

Spring update

 Finally it feels like Spring may have arrived. It has been a long time coming, and what a joy to see the buds bursting forth, and the cherry blossom exploding into a frothy mass of pink or white.

Work on site has continued regardless. The landscapers have battled on with our Pimlico Roof Terrace enduring gale force winds, pouring rain, hail and just when we thought the worst was over, snow descending on Thurs April 4th just to hamper them at the final hurdle. All is finished now.

Work in Stoke Newington continues, we are about half way through the build, and should have some photos soon to update our Facebook page.

Continue reading Spring update.

New LGD Office

London Garden Designer has just recently moved into a new office near Hampstead Heath. We have more space and much better light, all good for design inspiration. The views are great, and we can hear the birdsong from our doorstep- even though we are in  bustling north London. One of my favourite paintings by Martin Gustavsson of a Hyacinth takes pride of place on the mantle piece and somehow compliments the shelves opposite, which are full of design books, project files and samples, all easily accessible and make for a more ergonomic working space.

Continue reading New LGD Office.

Landscape Architect JoanMa Roig joins LGD

We welcome to London Garden designer, JoanMa Roig Ortiz. JoanMa is a fully qualified Horticulturalist and Landscape Architect from Barcelona, who has more than five years experience designing and project managing in Europe and London. He works as a project designer alongside Sara Jane.

Continue reading Landscape Architect JoanMa Roig joins LGD.

Completed Garden in Highgate

London Garden Designer has recently completely this exciting, contemporary garden in Highgate, it took about 6 months to build, and incoporates a sawn yorkstone patio, with Corten Steel panels,water feature, silver birch tree copse and garden office.

Continue reading Completed Garden in Highgate.

Current Projects

London Garden Designer are currently working with a Visionary property developer who has engaged us to design nine gardens for a residential development.The properties are high end design; from the Architects scheme, through to finishes and integrated touch pad control technology. The gardens will reflect this cool, contemporary look.

Continue reading Current Projects.

Spring Plants

Here at London Garden Designer, we know that there is some debate as to whether March 1st heralds the start of Spring, or if in fact it officially begins on March 20th- the date of the 'Vernal Equinox.'

Continue reading Spring Plants.

Winter Gardens

As Autumn fades taking its rich, luxuriant colours and abundance of produce with it, it leaves behind a garden stripped bare but equally beautiful, with the low setting sun casting dramatic shadows.

One of the greatest pleasures of winter gardening is having time to plan. It is a perfect time for looking at the design, as the garden is in its most raw state without the lush foliage of spring and the bright blooms of summer to hide behind.

Continue reading Winter Gardens.

Autumn Gardens

This is the season of russet and deep red hues to warm you up as the temperature drops. The rustle of leaves appeal to the senses, and  the early darkness makes the remaining daylight hours even more precious. 

Continue reading Autumn Gardens.

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