Design Process – Part 5


Through The Garden Gate.

There was still one piece of the jigsaw missing. I was really pleased to hear that Tim and Ruth had decided to commission Iron Art to make their garden gate.

Everything was finally in place. Tim had always wanted the garden to be ready as soon as possible for the family to enjoy so when an earlier slot became available he took it. Normally I would be concerned that the planting would be establishing during the hot summer months but as Tim was installing a rainwater harvesting system this did not present a problem.

I visited the garden right at the beginning of the build to check that the setting out of the garden layout had been carried out correctly and that nothing had been misconstrued from the plan. The early phase when everything is being destroyed can be difficult but it does pass and soon the new garden takes shape; it is so exciting. Closing the old entrance and creating the new one was nerve wracking but surprisingly quickly the new location became a habit and then normal. The new approach did make the front door more prominent than before and the house sat comfortably within the garden. Adding the planting would alter things again. The change of dates meant the plant delivery had been moved and happened to coincide with the final week of preparations for the plant party in the park which I was organising with Rosie Nottage.


It took 2 days to set out and then plant the garden. Although the plants added some valuable greenery straightaway unless you buy mature specimens they are initially too small to add much real impact. Even though growing takes time Tim could water them daily giving the new plants what they needed to grow as fast as they possibly could.

Even with the plants in place the garden was still not complete; it lacked the icing on the cake. Opening a gate is the perfect preparation for the transition from a public space to a private haven. You couldn’t get a better way of entering the garden that by lifting the latch and swinging open the ‘anemone gate’. It is absolutely stunning and reflects the owners’ individuality and creativity and of curse their love of gardens. Personally I love it’s colours. The red is strong, bold and somehow beckons you into the garden. The incredible detail in the petals of the anemone flowers is amazing and hard to believe they have been made from metal. They certainly herald what is to follow; the personal space of Tim and Ruth’s garden.

Having designed gardens in the Bath and Bristol area for many years now I know that no two clients are the same and even though there is a garden design process this does needs to be fluid and responsive to both the client and the project in order to get the best results. It was a joy to develop the front garden with such appreciative clients as Tim and Ruth we are now working on the rear garden which is presenting a whole new set of challenges.

new-gateYou can read all about the creation of the anemone gate on the Iron Art blog:

The Anemone Gate in Larkhall

The Making of the Anemone Gate

Read part 1

Read part 2

Read part 3

Read part 4