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Is paying for a garden design worth it?

(15 Posts)
Theknittinggorilla Fri 17-Feb-17 17:44:51

We are about to undertake some work on our house which will involve new kitchen and changing access to the garden. It's not a simple bit of work as the garden is on a different level to the ground floor of the house and there is a cellar which we need access to.

We have an architect who has drawn up the plans for the internal work and the access, but am wondering whether to pay a garden designer to make the most of the garden. It's quite small (40 feet by 30 feet), and we really want to make the most of it. The main reason for doing the work on the house is to improve the access to the garden and allow us to use it more. The intention is for it to work as dining/entertaining plus kids play area. We also might want to use part of the garden for parking in the winter but as a usable area in the summer.

We have been quoted £300 for a garden design. Has anyone used a garden designer and was it worth it?

SunnySomer Fri 17-Feb-17 17:51:41

My parents did, about 20-25 years ago and it was worth every penny. They have a tiny, square garden which she turned into a multi-layered space; the materials she recommended using reflected local architecture so look appropriate; her planting recommendations were bang on.
At the time I thought they were mad, spending money on garden design, but so long later, the design still works and still looks fresh.

carrotcakecupcake Fri 17-Feb-17 17:53:43

If you aren't in a hurry could you look at doing it yourself? A former colleague of mine took a night course at a local FE college to learn garden design and used her own garden as the project during the course. She ended up with a bespoke design that she did herself, with support from the instructor.

everythingshunkdory Fri 17-Feb-17 17:59:02

Absolutely imo. It is so much trickier to design a garden than a room, as you have to know which plants will grow in your garden, and what flowers when. No good picking a colour scheme if they will never flower at the same time! Garden designers can also help you avoid the lawn with planting round the edge look which is so tempting to do in a small space. As pp said, gardens don't date as quickly as interiors so if you can get the hard landscaping and architectural plants now, they should last as long as you're in the house

pixiebaby23 Fri 17-Feb-17 18:00:45

Yes, worth it ime. You can choose to do the work yourself afterwards.

ShortLass Fri 17-Feb-17 18:26:29

I had someone come round the other day to advise on the garden. Just brilliant! She came up with the best idea for decking, lawn and where to put a new tree.

The money I spend on getting it right, I will save on plants which don't work and need to be replaced down the line.

I paid £260 for a three hour consultation for a design and am very pleased. It might sound a lot, but she knew her stuff. I'll be getting her in to do a planting plan later in the year.

Make sure you get someone who knows what they're talking about. I tried a different person once before and she didn't seem to know what plants like shade and which like sun.

NomDePlumeReloaded Fri 17-Feb-17 18:33:07

I think if you have an awkward space (sloping / funny shaped / dark / boggy) or have specific needs (multiple uses or accessibility for e.g.) it's useful. Or if you are designing a high spec house it can help to bring outside/inside together and improve value/desirability of finished article.

However, if you just want a normal family garden for a normal family house and have a modicum of knowledge and time (or google), you can probably do it yourself.

BumbleNova Fri 17-Feb-17 18:56:20

Yes! we have and it was money very well spent. We just had no idea where to start with planting plans and general design. one of the best house investments we made.

didireallysaythat Fri 17-Feb-17 19:43:32

I would ! In fact, I think I might.....

MooseyMouse Fri 17-Feb-17 19:44:31

A friend of mine did and her garden was beautiful.

Millybingbong Fri 17-Feb-17 19:45:14

If anyone else has any recommendations for someone who would come to North worcs then I'm all ears!

Dizzylizzie29 Fri 17-Feb-17 19:55:43

Any NW recommendations also welcome 😊

AstrantiaMajor Fri 17-Feb-17 20:03:44

I paid £390 for my 27 feet x 14 feet garden. It was worth its weight InGold.

The landscaper found it much easier to work from her scale plans rather than my airy ideas. I wanted to level my garden by raising the far end. She suggested lowering the end and making the garden on 3 levels. This saved £900. I was very lucky as she understood immediately what I needed.

I got the landscaper from the Marshalls Recommened list. He recommended the designer to me, but said it was optional to use her.

Theknittinggorilla Fri 17-Feb-17 20:33:39

Ooh thanks everyone. I'm really keen to do it as think it is actually more complex than the design for the inside! Dh needs a bit more convincing but think I will renew my efforts....

Bookishandblondish Fri 17-Feb-17 20:47:16

I've just paid £600 - but includes supervision of the landscaping. My garden is tiny and currently laid out to make the worst of the space rather than the best - but he came up with some really clever ideas including something interesting for the side return passage. Planting is designed for all year interest. Currently getting quotes for the landscaping but I couldn't have come up with what he did.

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