Formal Town Garden, Dorset

Well-defined structure and geometry are at the heart of this garden in Dorset, in which the owners wanted to create a formal space that reflected the style of a classic country manor.

With limited room at the front of the house, planting was used to soften the necessary hard surfaces and to frame the front door, whilst trellising was used to create a boundary to the back garden providing the additional opportunity to introduce Roses and other traditional climbing plants to the arrival area.

To the rear, pleached trees, low hedges and evergreen shrubs formed the framework of the design, adding the desired formality and structure, with an orderly avenue of pleached Hornbeams providing extra height to make the garden feel larger.

Designed for a family, year-round entertaining was another important consideration. We took advantage of the sloping site to create two terrace areas, one set below the level of the house to catch the evening sun, and another raised area enclosed by a formal stone balustrade, for dining. To soften the overall effect, decorative borders were introduced providing colour and seasonal variation in a classic mix of purples, greens and white, contrasting with the pale limestone paving and the neutral brickwork of the house.

Not forgetting the younger members of the family, a smart playhouse was set to one side of the garden to catch the morning and midday sunlight.

BALI Design Excellence Winner 2017