3 Crescent Garden
The Hidden Deck.
We packed as much into this garden as possible so that our client could spend long periods of time there and still see new aspects of the garden. One of the ways we achieved this was to ‘wrap’ the different elements around each other, here you can see that the deck overhangs and encircles the top edge of the pond. It in turn is surrounded by plants. By interlocking curving shapes and using different architecturally shaped plants we can create much detail and detract from the small size of the garden. We also bring our client into contact with the plants, stone, fish and water, making the experience of sitting on the deck as intense as possible. The deck can seat 4 or 5 people and as the deck dries very quickly after rain and is a warm material (compared to stone) the client preferred to sit directly on it sometimes using beanbags or kilims (Morrocan rugs). From the deck most of the surrounding houses cannot be seen and they cannot see our client and friends. Our client is also distracted from the sounds of the city by a small waterfall feeding the pond, which makes a subtle rushing sound. When this is turned off however, it is dramatic to hear the sounds of traffic, sirens and local industry re-invade the garden.
3 Crescent Geometry
This is a glimpse at one of the ‘tricks of the trade’. This type of geometry has been used by architects, textile designers and artists of all types in many different cultures for centuries. We at RGC have no idea why it is not taught on so called ‘Garden Design Courses’.
Even the smallest garden must have a journey to go on. The psychological effect of being able to walk to somewhere in a garden means that there is somewhere to go to, a destination where you can sit, take in a view, perhaps a secret garden where you can escape to. Here this short path of just a few stepping stones leads to the deck where you are hidden from the house. On the way you pass over a small rushing waterfall. The presence of moving water in a garden is important; it brings sound and visual movement in a calming and natural way. This path brings you into contact with these qualities and in the spring the air is filled with the scent of Clematis armandii, the climber overhanging the bamboo fence. In such a small garden the sight of a large area of fence panel is unattractive, so here we built a screen of bamboo strips that were attatched to the existing fence.
Before, During and after.
Using a wide range of materials, the innovation and attention to detail in this design has made a relaxing and serene living space for me in my home. Ms. H. Allan
Thiese images show how it is possible to transform a concrete covered ‘yard’, with decrepit outbuildings, into a lush and green oasis over the course of just 3 years. By aligining the different elements of the garden (patio/deck/pond) with the garden’s central axis, all of its parts are surrounded by foliage; as they are in the middle of the garden and there is room for planting all around, disguising the fences and making the size of the garden less apparent. We used 7 tonnes of stone in this garden which is only 5x10m, roughly 15×30′, to make a completely natural landscape in complete contrast to the surrounding metropolis.
A Theraputic Garden
The underlying geometry in the design of this garden allows us to use a profuse planting design whilst not making a cluttered and over complicated look. All of the plants have their place and create a harmonious composition whilst giving space for the other elements, like the patio, path, pond and deck, as well as small details like the Buddha in the second photo here. Smaller details are important because although you may not see them at first glance, they provide new insights even after sitting in the garden for a long time. These factors are important in a small space and provided the feeling of calm and restfulness that our client wanted. In this garden she could forget about the events of the day and lose herself in the details of the garden, letting the sounds, scents and lush privacy of the garden provide a relaxing and theraputic retreat