How I Work

A professional garden design service

I offer a complete garden design service from initial consultation right through to hiring contractors and overseeing the landscaping and construction work. Here’s a quick guide to the process, with some advice on how to make it as easy and cost-effective as possible:

First Steps

Before we meet, I always advise my clients to think about what they want from their garden. What mood are you hoping to create – colourful and contemporary, relaxed and tranquil, cottage garden idyll? Will your garden be a haven for wildlife, a place for entertaining, or just somewhere to escape and relax? Garden magazines can be good source of ideas, or you can take photographs of gardens you particularly like. An idea of budget is also helpful (see panel).


This is my opportunity to get to know you and your garden and discuss your requirements. It’s also your chance to ask any questions you may have about the project and the design process. Afterwards I will write to you to confirm what we discussed and give you a detailed quote. There is no charge for a consultation.

Survey and Site Appraisal

Before I start designing, I always recommend a survey of your garden, usually by a specialist land surveyor. This provides an accurate, scaled plan on which I can base my designs. I also like to carry out a separate site appraisal of my own so that I can make a note of any unusual features. I am happy to organise a land surveyor for you, if you wish.

Mood Boards and Sketch Plans

When I have all the information I need, I start by creating a set of ‘mood boards’. These are a compilation of garden-related images designed to prompt two-way discussion and spark ideas. This is the fun part when the creative juices start to flow! While I am developing mood boards I also produce scaled sketch plans on which to base the eventual master plan, as well as 3D images to help you visualise how everything will look.

The Masterplan

Once you have approved the design I will draw up a master plan, also known as an outline plan. This shows the design layout and the position of the key features such as hard landscaping, lawns, borders and water features.

A garden design master plan

Setting Out and Construction Detail

Before a contractor can be appointed I will need to draw construction details and setting out plans. These enable the contractor to construct your design.



A good garden designer will always come up with ideas you wouldn’t have thought of yourself – like this ornamental water feature. They’ll also be able to source good-quality plants and materials, and design to your budget.
What Will It Cost?

A full-scale garden redesign is not cheap. The costs of materials and labour for landscaping are much the same as any other building project, and you need to be aware of this when you work out your budget.

But don’t forget that the money you spend on your garden is an investment for the future. So long as you look after them, your plants will grow and mature. That means that as the years go by, your garden will go on looking better and better, and adding more and more value to your home.