A gorgeous Victorian terraced house tucked away within a secluded area of Oxford’s thriving city centre. Encompassing a charming rear garden and a flourishing kitchen garden space, this urban landscape was due to be brought back to life with a touch of planting rejuvenation. Included in this garden’s original design there were a selection of brick parallel borders that were yearning to be awoken with a vibrant palette of floral texture and fragrance. Discover how our expert design team transformed this blank space into a burgeoning urban hideaway.
The initial brief for this soft landscaping project was to create a garden of verdant forms and textures with a changing canvas of deciduous trees. To begin the planting narrative, we firstly began looking at the sight lines from the house to the immediate space in the foreground, envisioning a striking multi-stem tree to set the initial framework. As you first enter out into the garden a container garden greets you, soon to be transformed into a flavoursome kitchen garden, underplanted with a variety of culinary delights, trained fruits and seating. As you continue to walk down through the garden, two borders sit either side of the pathway which required refreshing with a relaxed planting scheme to enhance the idyllic notion of this hidden city garden. With a touch of existing trellis also located in the right hand border, we were inspired to bring this space to life with a charming climber.
As you venture into the rear garden you naturally drift into a secluded seating area. A spot that receives an abundance of sunshine, our planting designers wanted to magnify the peaceful nature of this area with a collection of trees to fill the space with splashes of dappled shade. Centred at the bottom of the garden and positioned on the trellis you can find the client’s delightful vintage style mirror, which diffuses a unique sense of depth and visual interest throughout the garden. To further continue the beautiful ambience of this area into the nighttime, a selection of vintage galvanised style lanterns could be placed around the trellis to softly illuminate the area.
To primarily reestablish the garden with floral interest, our soft landscaping team firstly planted up a trilogy of smaller containers with the generous blousy blooms of Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’ and flourishing collection of Erigeron karvinskianus. Refreshing the kitchen garden with a collection of homegrown culinary ingredients, we planted a sprinkling of delicate white violas and flowing alpine strawberries. To be admired from the kitchen as you look out into the garden a single specimen multi-stem Acer was chosen to add a touch of open structure whilst giving a nod to the art of the Japanese garden (a favourite from our well-travelled client.) A cornucopia of fragrant planting now graces two large pathway borders with a blend of creamy white and purple blooms. Sitting parallel from one another, our designers again echoed natural form using the elegant topiary domes of Taxus baccata yew. Complimented within a fragrant tapestry of Lavandula, we also included a magical array of Rosemarinus ‘Miss Jessop’, Perovskia, Astrantia major subsp. involucrata ‘Shaggy’ and the palest lilac of Thymus.
Heading into the rear garden we planted a pair of Amelanchier lamarckii trees to the rear boundary. Displaying breezy fans of foliage, their light canopies impart a beautiful dappled shade effect to this picturesque seating area. Flourishing prolific white starry blossoms in early spring, these trees boast an abundance of lush green leaves, turning to beautiful bronze tones in the autumn. To adapt the space further and continue this verdant scene we flanked an arrangement of slim Taxus baccata either side of the central vintage mirror. Adding depth and form to the rear garden, we completed this heavenly vista with an understory of planting. Combining an airy mix of alchemilla mollis and calamintha nepetoides, we also included a hint of snow white digitalis and polystichum setiferum to brighten the slightly more shadier spots. For the final touches, we trained a glorious Hydrangea petiolaris climber along the trellis centred in the right hand border to complete this harmonious hidden garden.
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``First of all, I should say we are very pleased with the garden. We would both like to thank you for your hard work over the past 11-12 weeks. We would be very happy to recommend you``