November 2

Top 10 Overhead beams and vertical gardening

Created by Anna Kapuvari


Vertical gardening is one of the best ways to enlarge your planting space and create different layers in the garden. The materials vary from timber to metal and it is always best to go with a bespoke feature to make something unique and well-fitted for your available space.


  1. Timber pergola

    timber-pergola-simple-but-great  A simple but effective way to create slight shade and structure for your climbing plants. It creates a slightly enclosed area with a sense of privacy.

  2. Painted pergola with hanging features

    pergola-with-swingWhy not use your pergola as a structure for swings and hammocks? Nothing better for the kids than a garden full of surprises.

  3. Archway with trellis

    timber-archway-with-trellis Timber archways can create a sense of entrance into your garden as you may step into the quiet and tranquil space. Square trellises can ensure climbers are growing in the right direction.

  4. Metal pergola

    metal-pergola To have a romantic element in your garden you can use this rustic bespoke pergola made of corrugated iron. Climbing roses look especially good with this feature.

  5. Arch with fairy lights

    arch-with-fairy-lightsNothing better for a garden party then lighting up your features with decorative lighting. You can use fairy lights on your timber arches among the climbing plants.

  6. Vertical gardening with crates

    vintage-crates-fixed-to-the-wallOur design in this pub herb garden uses vintage wine crates filled with herbs which are used in the kitchen for cocktails and cooking. Using recycled materials always ensures a unique feature which is both cost-effective, environmentally friendly.

  7. Brick archway

    brick-archSuited for more spacious gardens, this brick arch invites you to the garden creating a romantic entrance with a scented lavender walk.

  8. Pergola with bamboo screen cover

    pergola-with-bamboo-coverFor an especially sunny site, or under a tree with always falling leaves, it is best to shelter ourselves: bamboo screens are cheap and look natural especially in an exotic themed garden.

  9. Trick entrance

    timber-arch-with-fairy-lights-and-mirrorA timber arch with a mirror hidden at the beck wall – maybe an entrance to a fairy forest? This garden was designed for kids with a fairy trail: odd stepping stones and logs lead into the timber archway.

  10. Simple posts with wires

    timber-post-with-wiresIt is enough for climbing plants to have a few wires across vertical posts – within time, they will create the desired closure.

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October 19

Ideas for a small garden

Created by Anna Kapuvari

How to Make the Most of a Small Garden

A few tips what you can achieve in your small garden


  • Salvia ’Caradonna’ – as it it has a very extended flowering period which provides vertical interest as well in a small border or a planter. Just need to keep deadheading and it will flower for ages.
  • Aquilegia varieties – after the flowers are gone, you can still enjoy the dried up seedheads as they rattle in the wind – it also self-seeds so no need to replant year after year.
  • Geranium ’Rozanne’- a very reliable trailing plant with prolonged flowering period
  • Pittosporum tobira ’Nana’ – a small, compact and evergreen shrub, a good choice to plant instead of box balls (as boxes are hard to keep healthy nowadays, prone to disease)
  • Amelanchier lamarckii – a small fruit tree. The multistem varieties look very good in a small garden, as they don’t grow too quick, provides flower interest in late spring and produces edible and very enjoyable berries in summer, which you have to get before the birds do! It also displays fine fiery Autumn colours and looks wonderful in winter as a sculptural feature.

What to avoid:

  • too many different kind of materials can make the space feel smaller
  • the same with having too many features: sometimes less is more, and instead of cramming everything into the design, decide what features you actually need and will definietly use
  • avoid flat designs – create different levels, even if it is just a raised bed: level changes make a space more dynamic. Use the vertical plane, with overhead beams or small pergola,  giving you added interest and another dimension to grow some climbing plants, twisting grapevines etc creating atmosphere and privacy.

How to enlarge space:

  • using mirrors in a garden is always a good tactic – it can reflect sunlight if it is angled in the right direction and it also makes the space feel bigger
  • with dwarf plants – many of the most common shrubs and trees are available now in dwarf sizes, so you don’t have to give up on your favourite plant
  • go vertical – by creating raised beds, pergolas, or fixing boxes to the walls you can make more planting space



An outdoors mirror hanging on a wooden fence in a garden surrounded by foliage



You can read more about the subject in this info-graphic:


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September 28

Garden office for family garden

Created by Anna Kapuvari

You need a quiet place to work, think or just be alone for a while? There is no place for that in your house? Make a space for yourself in the garden! Here is a case study of one of our latest completed designs in Fulham.

The pictures below show how the garden looked like before and during the construction.





Some images right after planting the raised timber beds with highly scented bee-friendly herbaceous plants, including Erysimum, Campanulas, Verbenas, Salvias and Agastaches.




The office takes place at the bottom of the garden, being half-hidden by another planter in front.




One month later, the plants have already started to grow thanks to our careful soil preparation.




Two months later, the plants have completed their job: the garden was full of bees and butterflies and lovely scents in the air. It is a nice walk through the garden going to work in this little office.


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September 21

Chelsea show gardens

Created by Anna Kapuvari

Remember the hot days of summer? Let’s keep on remembering with a new example of this year’s Chelsea Flower Show: the category winner in the artisan section, The Sculptor’s Picnic Garden. Designed by Graham Bodle, the oak branches reminiscent of antlers are meant to create a semi-enclosed space, a garden of contemplation, tranquility and relaxation.


The planting cosists of conifers, grasses and shady groundcover plants creating a woodland planting theme.


Detailing is very important to emphasise the message of the garden. Seeing these objects; the leftovers of a woodland picnic, some apples and a blanket, all we want to do is to get into that garden, sit down and relax.


An example of a cute groundcover conifer: Pinus mugo.


Another shady groundcover favourite, Asarum europeaum, the European wild ginger.


A well-deserved gold medal and best in category award for this design, which perfectly showcases the atmosphere of an artisan garden.




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July 30

Recent 3D designs

Created by Anna Kapuvari

Have a look at one of our latest 3D designs made in SketchUp: a family garden based in Ealing. Walking out form the house, there is an L-shaped patio with a dining table creating a transition area between the kitchen and the garden. From the dining table, we can view the whole garden: the lawn area, the symmetrical borders at both sides with multistemmed birch trees, the pergola and the raised bed at the rear garden.



The pergola serves two purposes: provides structure for climbing plants and creates an adventurous place for kids to play, featuring swings, a slide, monkey bars and a raised platform.



A view from the dining table:


The retaining wall and the steps leading up to the raised are made of natural stones, leading to the bamboo area, which hides the kids’ trampoline.


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July 28

Chelsea show gardens

Created by Anna Kapuvari

Another big show garden this week: the Royal Bank of Canada Garden featuring three different parts of planting schemes.


Designed by Matthew Wilson, the garden is divided up into three parts, exploring three different planting options: a dry garden, a water-harvesting zone and an edible garden part.


The designs celebrate the curves as a sign of beauty – represented in both the benches and the decking pattern.




The water feature is a 3-part tiered natural stone waterfall.


The planting is energetic and vibrant as the Californian poppies literally pop out from the other silver foliaged plants in the foreground.




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July 15

Recent 3D designs

Created by Anna Kapuvari

Here is one of our latest 3D designs made in SketchUp for a garden near Queen’s Park- featuring cottage planting, raised beds and a quiet writer’s corner at the back.


The patio is surrounded with railway sleeper terracing and steps going up to the level of the back garden with a curved cobbled path leading to the back patio area with a Shepherd’s hut and the dining area under the pergola. Here is the view as we will see from the house, looking out to the garden:


The birds eye view helps us to see the structure of the entire garden:


The view as we would come we from the kitchen – the raised beds will be filled with aromatic herbs for cooking.


Terracotta pots are scattered in the entire garden for annual bedding displays.


View of the borders: dense cottage planting with self-seeding annuals, herbs and perennials. The fencing will be hazel hurdles all around covered in scented climbers.


View from the back patio dining area, which will be lit up with fairy lights.



The seating area next to the path will give structure to the existing grape wine – just imagine sitting there with a good book eating grapes from your wine!


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July 14

Chelsea show gardens

Created by Anna Kapuvari

This week we wonder in one of the big show gardens from the Chelsea Flower Show 2015: the Perfumer’s Garden in Grasse by L’Occitane


Designed by James Basson, the garden represents the renaissance of perfume industry in Grasse with its traditional plantations.



The planting has a natural feel: this garden could remind us of our childhood when we were running in a field of poppies during summer and playing with the petals of lilac irises.


Many aromatic herbs, like this rosemary, appear in the planting making it a sensory, scented garden.


The lights were attractive bell-shaped lanterns with their wires twisted on tree trunks as well as little colourful glass balls interspersed with the perennial planting.



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July 7

Chelsea show gardens

Created by Anna Kapuvari

This week, we visit one of the fresh gardens at the Chelsea Flower Show 2015: the Dark Matter Garden for the National Schools’ Observatory, which won a gold medal and the best show garden in the category.


The main feature is the corrugated iron structure representing the effect of dark matter on the light.



The circular seating area made from bent steel rods is densely planted – even the path has little groundcovers coming through.




The curved steel rods reflect the light around massive objects in the universe when dark matter is present – if this will not make us interested in physics and astronomy, nothing will!




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July 1

Chelsea show gardens

Created by Anna Kapuvari

This week, we explore one of the artisan gardens from this year’s Chelsea Flower Show, the Trugmaker’s Garden.


The garden focuses on the skills of traditional Sussex trugmakers creating baskets from willow and sweet chestnut.


The overall look creates an idyllic and nostalgic atmosphere reminding us about old times when tradition and folklore were part of the everyday life.


The planting combination is vibrant – the orange coloured Geums looked fiery with the blue Delphiniums in the background.



All these equipment were laid out in an organised mess – like they were there for a hundred years. Not an easy look to achieve when building a show garden. Designed by Serena Fremantle and Tina Vallis, this garden well deserved the gold medal.




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