Monday, 1 June 2020

Greencube Design in Sunday Times 31st May 2020

Boost Kerb Appeal

See us in yesterday's Sunday Times, a feature on boosting kerb appeal by Jayne Dowle. Here we have designed a front garden in Greenwich, blending old with new. Soft yorkstone bullnose paving blends with old London brick of the house and creates a contrast with the geometric patterned replica victorian tiles. We've used a simple mix of planting to create a wonderful entrance to this lovely home and an additional basement seating area that catches the late afternoon sun.

Thursday, 2 April 2020

Homes and Gardens May 2020 Issue

See greencube in May's issue of Homes and Gardens magazine

Thank you Homes and Gardens for including our top tip

'How does your garden grow....'

simple planting ideas from our green-fingered experts

Monday, 30 March 2020

Here's how we work - a case study

Let's have a chat......

Our garden design process begins with you contacting us by email or a phone call, a chat........ You may not have worked with a designer before and may like to understand how the design process works, get an idea of the timescales, and budgets. If you like what you hear we'll arrange a visit. I like to spend an hour or so with you, in your home and garden space. We will talk about your likes and dislikes, I'll listen to your thoughts and ideas, take some notes, take some photos and understand what you want from your outside space.

I use my time with you to:

  • Get to know you as an individual, collect your ideas, desires and requirements for your garden
  • Get a feel for your house, your home, your style and gain some context for my design ideas
  • Do an analysis of the site, for example: light, shade, aspect, privacy, access, circulation, etc.
  • Explain and discuss the process and how I can help you achieve your ambitions
My objective is to develop, evolve, and challenge your original ideas beyond your own imagination. After consideration of all this information and usually within a couple of days I provide a quote, confirming your brief, our ideas and setting out our fees.

During the Covid-19 lockdown, we are continuing to work with new clients using your photos and videos of the site, key measurements and downloaded detailed Ordnance Survey scaled plans. Please call to discuss your requirements.

I thought it would be useful to share a case study, explaining the process from start to finish and show how we turn the client's ideas into an exciting new outdoor space. 

Here's an example:

1. The brief

This is an example brief based on a real client's requirements. The client wanted:
  • Dining and lounging space
  • Maximise the social space
  • Lush/tropical planting
  • Herbs
  • No lawn
  • And they like doing a little gardening

2. The site survey

We visit and measure the house, the boundaries, the levels, the doors and windows, inspection chambers, the gates, fence, the existing materials, access, aspect, existing trees and shrubs and carry out a soil test.

3. Design

Consolidating all the information gathered we develop the design. This includes a scaled drawing, material boards, 3d perspective views and a movie that provides a virtual tour through your new garden allowing you to visualise our design. We present this to you in person and talk you through the designs and visualisations, taking any feedback and making suggested modifications. At this stage we also discuss our ideas for the core materials (e.g. paving, decking, flooring, walls, etc). Once the design brief is agreed we will provide additional lighting and setting out plans.

4. Finding the right Landscaper

As Designers we do not build our gardens. We prefer to work with you to find the most appropriate Landscaper to meet your needs. Over many years we have identified the best Landscapers in the geographic areas we work in and built relationships based on communication, skills, precision, honesty and of course delivery. We often tender the requirements to two or three preferred Landscape contractors, encouraging and demonstrating a competitive quote. We generally favour landscapers who are approved and accredited by The Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) and/or British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI). 

5. Construction

Having selected your preferred Landscaper the build can begin. 

We can also offer project monitoring as an additional service, providing our experienced eye over the landscaper's work to ensure our design specification is delivered fully, correctly and to the required quality, and meaning you can relax and enjoy the process.  We can also ensure that your or the landscaper's questions are answered quickly and mistakes are avoided.

We sometimes make colour choices or design detail decisions during the build. Here's an example, working with our client to choose the colours for their rendered walls.

6. Planting Plans

While the build is in progress we work on your plant boards, based on your provided brief. Following your feedback we will devise the planting plans and develop an aftercare schedule. Here are some examples of plant boards:

And an example planting plan for the case study garden:

7. Planting

We can supply all of the plants for your scheme, including specimen trees and shrubs. We are able to offer a discount on retail prices and provide an assurance of quality by using accredited specialist trade suppliers.

Once the build is complete and the beds prepared our team at greencube will expertly plant up your garden, and provide you with an aftercare plan and schedule. We also offer aftercare, regular visits to keep your garden looking great if you need some help?

8. Finishing touches

We are able to source a wide variety of high-quality, modern garden furniture and accessories including statement pots, firebowls, furniture, swings, etc. as well as many bespoke, made to measure items - to help create that finished look.

And here is the case study garden completed:

Friday, 21 February 2020

two seasons same view

We were out working in our front garden in Sevenoaks this week. It's time for the big chop, cutting all the perennial grasses down ready for spring, top dressing the borders with organic compost.

Here's image taken on Wednesday and how it looked last summer 2019.


Cotinus with pink plumes, Hydrangea with a pink tinge and Hakonechloa grass

summer view

winter view

Tuesday, 4 February 2020

Society of Garden Designers Awards

The Society of Garden Designers annual awards ceremony at Landmark Hotel in London. Friday 31st January 2020

I entered this years new award Beth Chatto Award

'For a project where the design focus is on the garden's environmental impact by the creative, ecological use of materials and planting to maximise sustainability, minimise maintenance and attract pollinators and wildlife.'

very proud and honoured to be a shortlisted finalist

here's a link to the finalists and winners

SGD Awards

arriving at the awards with Sue Willmott

Our Chair Sarah Morgan delivering the intro speech.

Runner up but very proud to be up there in the final for our Modern Meadow, 'nature's doing its best in this garden, a bee and butterfly nectar pot with native wildflower meadow mix, bold clipped yew buttresses, native hedging, birch standards and pops of additional seasonal colour.

This garden is a showcase on our website to encourage new clients to consider a wilder look, create a home for nature, a mini nature reserve. Watch the birds come in, meadow brown butterflies, frogs, toads, newts, hedgehogs..... We also have establishing wild orchids now growing in this meadow, get in touch if you want a wilder look.