One of the most enjoyable aspects of landscaping is reviving the gardens of older properties, where generations have pottered and pruned.
We had been asked to put the charm back into a cottage garden. The clients knew that the garden was looking rather tired and dated. The lawns were bare, the concrete paths and driveway were crumbling. It was clear that it needed a complete makeover.
Designing the Garden
The finished garden needed to look as if it had been established for many years. We used old stone for the walls, matching the stone of the cottage, and reclamation materials for all the other features.
The clients wanted a pergola, so we designed one which had pillars made from old reclaimed brick. The beams across the top were constructed from reclaimed timber. Another feature we created was a period style rose arch. In two or three years the roses will be established and the arch will have blended in perfectly.
Often, when digging in people’s gardens you can come across the unexpected. In this particular garden, we discovered a drinking well that had long since been capped. This meant some last minute redesign – we wanted to restore it to former glories. We used natural stone to rebuild it, and a roof was placed over the top. The roofing tiles we used were reclaimed and identical to those on the house. The pergola is perfect for growing rambling roses. It was built on concrete footings and had a metal rod inserted into the center of the concrete. Brickwork around the rod makes it incredibly robust.
Tips from the Design Team
- When looking to source reclamation materials, always try to take a few samples away to make sure that the colors and textures are exactly right. We always check on site that they compliment the property, prior to any construction.
- Stonework always looks best once it has matured. If you can’t find any old stone to build with, you can speed up the aging process. Simply brush on live yogurt!