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05 May 2007

Garden Design

So on Wednesday I had my first chat with a garden designer.

The previous owners had plans drawn up last year to redo the front and back yards and we're piggybacking off the plans they had done to get the back garden sorted out (the front garden will have to wait until next year or until we win the lottery).

I'm a bit nervous about the process as we didn't do as much research as we should have done into Seattle-based designers, nor did we get any competitive quotes - the completed plans lying on the kitchen countertops were just too tempting, as the was the fact that the company specialises in organic gardening. But Brian seemed lovely and very amenable to my ideas (which he called 'fun'. This could of course be a euphemism.)

I've never worked with an interior or garden designer before and I'm really looking forward to the experience. I sort of know what I like when it comes to gardens, but don't know much at all about what goes where, what grows where and how to group plants together. Fortunately the climate in the Pacific North West is so similar to that of the UK that many of the plants I love the most should grow well here.

At the moment the garden is decidedly oddly configured, with a down-at- heel patio that seems to be expressly designed to draw you away from the lawn and towards the very un-picturesque driveway, and with a wall round the lawn which acts as a barricade. Even the Minx seems confused when she goes outside as to whether she's 'allowed' to climb the steps and run about on the lawn.

We're going to rejig the previous plans somewhat so that there is a definite progression from a pretty seating area to a small area of lawn; some sort of fence and gate to the left to trap in the Minx, and lots of underplanting round the tree (which is currently a mass of weeds).  As for planting - I didn't even look at what the previous owners had requested, as I've got a pretty good idea that their taste will not exactly coincide with mine.


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Yippee! You are in garden heaven and I can hardly wait to see what you come up with. What sorts of plants do you like? Does your yard get lots of sun? I wish you loads of fun in this endeavor.

WHAT? You have gone all that way only to have weather like we do in the UK?

Unfortunately Mr Gates did not choose to establish his empire in Provence.

The weather in Seattle and the weather in London are purported to be almost identical, though this past winter has seemed rainier than any I've experienced in the UK. Seattle summers are supposed to be gorgeous though - but I'm not entirely sure when they start.

Don't worry, Seattle summers are gorgeous. Paola, I live close to your neck of the woods and need to get started on my garden as well. Would you be willing to pass on the name of your designer? I'm having a terrible time finding someone willing to take on my project!

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