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Flowers and Images from Jayne Anthony Gardens


What to Consider if you want to Create a New Garden

So where do you start when you want to re-design or revitalize your garden? A good garden will come from a good design and careful planning, so don't be tempted to rush into this enterprise or get an idea built in a day. In fact, if you have just moved into a new property, it is worth living with the garden for a year to see what plants and bulbs are already there and to allow yourself time to experience the garden and establish how you naturally move around it.

Whether you want to design the garden yourself or commission someone to design it for you, firstly you need to think about what you want to use the garden for, its function. For example, you may have children or grandchildren that need lawn space to play, or you may want to use all or part of the garden as a functional space to grow vegetables.

Secondly, think about what style of garden you would like. You may like formal garden styles with lots of box hedging and topiary, or you may like the country cottage approach with plants spilling over onto brick paths.

Thirdly, think about your budget. If you are using a garden designer, it is important to let them know how much you intend to spend on the design and build of the garden. They won't be able to design to the nearest pence, but they will certainly know what will be outside the budget and will design accordingly. If you are designing yourself, you will have to do some research into materials and features to roughly work this out.

Here is a useful checklist of things to think about before beginning the design process.

• Who will use the garden, and how?
• How many people will use the garden at any one time?
• Are there existing pets or plans to get one?
• If a patio is required, what will it be used for - relaxing, eating out, sunbathing?
• If dining out, how many people will you want to seat/how large is your table?
• Do you want to build any garden structures e.g. conservatory, shed.
• Do you require a seating area in sun or shade or both?
• Will you require a BBQ - built in or mobile?
• Is a lawn required?
• Do you need garden storage, compost bins, washing line, wood store, greenhouse or other buildings?
• Are there any particular requirements for children?
• Would you like a
water feature?
• Do you require lighting?

• If you have little time to water, do you require an irrigation system?
• Are there any good views that need to be exploited, or ugly views that need to be hidden?
• Would you like any overhead structures such as a
pergola, arbour or archway?
• Do you prefer an informal or formal
• Would you prefer a traditional or contemporary
• Do you have an interest in encouraging
wildlife in the garden?
• Do you have any particular preferences of hard landscaping material - paving, fencing styles?
• Do you have any likes and dislikes in terms of particular
plants and colour schemes?
• Have you visited any other gardens or seen photos of any that you like?
• Who will be looking after the garden and how much time will they have?
• Do you want to grow fruit and veg?
• When do you require the garden to be ready?
• What is your total design and build budget?