Oasis Retreat Lifestyle London
Outdoor cooking in the garden, using a barbeque or smoker, is accommodated here in the shady jungle, beside a waterfall, surrounded by towering bamboo and palms. This is just one of the settings for outdoor entertaining in this garden.
A contemporary composite deck wraps around this all-glass living room frontage, looking out onto a desert-style planting of spikey Agaves and Aloes from Mexico, and palms from Morroco and Sicily. Perfectly lit at night, the view of the architectural spikey plants forms a visual extension of the interior space, bringing the garden into the house.
A deck and an Indian sandstone patio are sited in this hot south-facing part of the garden. They make a comfortable location for sunbathing and are sited in front of a Mediterranean desert-style planting, in contrast to the dappled shade offered by other parts of the garden. The transition between these environments is reached through a narrow opening in a bamboo hedge, as seen below.
Left – approaching the bamboo hedge, Centre – walking into the jungle shade, Right – through the giant golden bamboo and palm grove, Below – arriving on a bridge over a rushing stream, that flows into a natural style pond, nestling under the jungle canopy of foliage.
The deck overhanging a natural pond in the background of this photo can be reached by one of the paths in this densely planted part of the garden, the two yellow seats and bistro table make a comfortable stopping off point, or a secluded place for extended afternoon relaxation in the filtered sunshine.
Garden design in London faces the challenge of finding dramatic vistas, creating journeys and destinations no matter how small the space. To be drawn to along a path by curiosity, leading to place with a sense of mystery about it is our aim in most of our garden designs. Here a long ‘central avenue’ leads to a panoramic garden view framed by palms and lawns.
As seen in the Sunday Telegraph Magazine our circular star design patio with curving benches and the desert style plants on the south facing hill. In the background on the left is the bamboo hedge that separates this hot sunny planting from the shady jungle style on the other side.
Before a storm; the light here perfectly captures the exoticplanting scheme found in this garden.
Left – on the other side of the bamboo hedge is the jungle. This path leads through the shade loving plants growing in a woodland community in the north facing part of the garden.
Right – you can hear the waterfall before you see it, with water crashing down its 1m high rock face into a catch pool which then feeds a stream, flowing into a pond.
Left – shady areas like this are perfect for growing ferns, tree ferns bamboo and palms. The patio with table and chairs is immeadiately outside the house making extra outdoor living space and the boundary between home and garden seemless.
Right – the same slate patio as in the left photo just after construction, next to the waterfall and stream – you can see the bridge over the stream in the background and beyond it the large palms which were the inspiration for the garden.
Top left – crashing waterfalls can be loud and invigorating which is not suitable for all positions. This garden is built on a hillside so there was a drop in ground levels where this could look like a natural waterfall. Planting surrounds the stones so that the whole structure appears as part of a woodland.
Right – the waterfall is part of rockery terracing that runs right across the back of the garden.
Below left – the waterfall and patio just after construction.
Top left – the south facing slope before we started work with fruit trees and grass.
Below left – 2001 we removed the ageing fruit trees, flattened the lower ground level and raised the upper, back level. Look at the houses behind to get an orientation on the viewpoint of these photos.
Centre – 2005 after the star patio construction and planting were finished.
Right – 2007 taken from exactly the same position as the below left photo. The red leaves beside the path are of Fasicularia bicolour which has a cobalt blue flower inside the red leaves.