.

What We Do

Garden design is a very flexible process and it is possible to commission us to just do a planting scheme or to project manage a whole garden revamp.

Design & Planning

In garden design, good preparation is everything so investing time upfront to get to know you and how you want to use your garden is critical.

At the first visit to your home, we will chat through your initial requirements, any planning issues and take a look at the space. You may have clear ideas about what you want …. or not. We will then give you an initial written quote for the first phase – the all-important survey and initial structural design.

Once approved, we will take a more detailed design brief from you and arrange a date to do a survey and site analysis. The survey enables us to map out the shape of the garden, mark any important features and identify changes of gradient. The site analysis enables us to consider location, context, soil, drainage and aspect – all of which significantly influence the final design.

Then we can get on with producing one or more design concepts accompanied by materials such a mood boards which give you the look and feel of the design. Once we have discussed these with you at concept stage, we will develop a fully worked up design for the structure of your garden that meets your brief.


Project Build

You may already have a preferred landscaper in mind to do the work. If you do not, we can often make a recommendation based on people whose work we know and trust. We always recommend you tender the work since the largest element of the cost is in the hard- landscaping element.

If you wish us to project manage various aspects of the work, for example overseeing the tendering process or being on hand to ensure a quality build, we can do so. We can also provide setting out and construction drawings which enable the landscaper to work to precise dimensions and realise the design exactly as intended.


Planting

Planting your garden is a separate phase of the design project and is usually done once the structural design is complete. Taking into account our analysis of the site, we tailor-make a planting plan for you setting out the required plant species and cultivars, how and where they are placed and the quantities you require.

We will then source these plants for you from reputable nurseries and plant them, ensuring they are given the best start in life. Where large shrubs or trees are required, both delivery and planting are usually commissioned from specialist nurseries who have the correct equipment to handle specimens at this scale.


Garden Care

Having invested in your garden, you want to keep it looking good. Maintaining a garden is not just about keeping the weeds down or mowing, but also about ensuring your plants stay in good shape and condition.

As a basic package, we can provide an annual plan based on the plants you have in the garden, allowing you to manage your own maintenance. We also provide seasonally based maintenance packages where a Lark Hall team will visit at specified times of the year to carry out a schedule of tasks.

We will discuss any requirements with you towards the end of the planting process.


Just need some advice?

If you are stuck for a present or simply want expert help to think about how you might transform your outdoor space, then our specialist garden consultation may be just the thing. There are two options on offer.

Option 1 is a consultation which takes place over 2 hours in your garden. We will walk the site together and talk through some options for change and things to think about. At £120, this is a low-cost way to benefit from our ‘design eye’ and to gain some instant advice.

Option 1+ includes a short, written report which will provide more analysis of the site and capture the issues and ideas discussed. Option 1+ also includes a complementary soil analysis. At £250, this gives you something more substantial to mull over and may be the basis for a commission to a landscaper or gardener.


A word about budgets

You should think of your garden as equivalent to designing an outdoor room (think kitchen or bathroom) and budget accordingly. Unlike a kitchen or a bathroom however, the flexibility of the design process means you can do the work in stages, breaking the project into chunks. Every garden is different and every design is bespoke. It is therefore not possible to give guide prices or specific fees until after the initial site visit. More detailed outline budgets can be prepared once the site survey and initial design done and the materials are specified.

“.......gardening is not just about digging. Or planting, for that matter. Gardening is about cherishing.”

Terry Hershey, Soul Gardening