Courtyard Garden, Chelsea
Approach: The garden has been designed with two distinct areas in mind; each with its own feel but ultimately connected by the use of architectural foliage and three strong blocks of narrow leaved Bay (Laurus nobilis angustifolia) to give a sense of structure. This is interwoven with softer plants such as ferns and white flowers. Scent from plants such as Daphne, Wintersweet, Jasmine and Honeysuckle permeate the air.
We have aimed to create a garden that can be equally enjoyed during the day but also at night. whilst entertaining, with the considered use of dramatic foliage, scent and white flowers which seem to come alive in the evening light.
The first area, adjoining the house, has. been designed for entertaining. A smooth cut sandstone paving lends an air of modernity, precision and grace; reflecting any garden lighting at night giving the illusion of extra space. At its focus stands a large bespoke green oak table and chairs and additional seating built into a smooth, white dividing wall. Green oak cubes provide more opportunities to sit in a less formal manner.
Tall multi-stemmed Aralia elata plants with their strong form but delicate foliage, make a bold statement and help divide this entertaining area from the meditative garden beyond.
Slate detailing set in the paving delineate this area and form a link to the path nearby. Leading off from the first terrace and moving under the first Aralia plant, a path of blue slate paddle stones tokes you towards the rear of the garden. The path edge is softened with a mixed planting of foliage plants and white flowers, many of which are scented and then extend throughout the whole garden.
View the plan in full (click to enlarge):
At the end of the path a screen of oak panels set on end and at an angle, allow you glimpses of the next area; a more private and enclosed space which has been designed for contemplation and relaxation. A small pool of water. clad in slate, resonates calm as the water trickles over the edge highlighting the wonderful luminous quality of slate when wet. A large seating area is the focus of this area; furnished with soft cushions it can also easily accommodate two people lying down.