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How we work

Cornus Garden Design understands that every client, every garden, every brief is different and nothing is ever taken for granted. We start off with a site visit during which we introduce our services to you and start to gain an understanding of your requirements, hopes and plans. You may want a garden which will house a trampoline and football goals now which in ten year’s time will make way for new borders. Perhaps your dream is a summerhouse where you can work as well or maybe a tiny secret garden tucked away as a sanctuary from the rush of the every day.

How far Cornus Garden Design gets involved is entirely up to you. It may be that you have a border which has been in place for so long that the plants have outgrown their space and you need something new. We can remove your old plants and bring in new ones, creating a completely different look and feel in a short space of time. Or you may ask for a plant list and decide to source and plant everything yourself – and that’s fine with us too.

Perhaps a fresh eye is needed and we will assess an area of your garden and identify where it could be altered and improved. We survey the area, consider the options and present you with a report and recommendations. Following that you can either choose to implement the changes yourself or we will be happy to return and do the work for you.

Budgets are important and we work hard to ensure that we deliver good value for money. It should be recognised that costs are involved in removing material as well as in supplying raw materials and plants, and that certain items such as paving may make up a significant percentage of the overall scheme cost. It occasionally happens that we will get to the costing stage and our client will realise that they are going to either have to compromise on what they would like to have or postpone the build for twelve months while they save up for it. Obviously we want our clients to be happy with their garden and will understand if the project takes a little longer to reach completion.

Aftercare is an important element in our service. Every garden we deliver comes with a hand-over meeting and a detailed maintenance schedule which lists all the plants and materials used, with images so you can recognise them and helpful notes on plant care and flowering times. We are always happy to deal with questions, either by telephone or email, or on site. So whether it’s a question about pruning your Caryopteris or dividing your Miscanthus, we are here to help.

The Bigger Picture

In addition to ensuring that your garden provides the perfect setting for your home, we pay attention to the way that your property fits into the landscape. The spirit of the place is important and influences our selection of boundary and paving, trees and plants. While we want you to be totally happy with your garden, if we don’t think a plant is going to look just right, we will suggest an alternative.

Our inspiration is drawn from many sources; starting with the countryside or cityscape around the property. During the initial meeting you will have a chance to tell us about gardens that you find attractive, plants you would like to have included in your new borders, designers whom you admire. We travel extensively, and visit gardens wherever we can, and use reference books, paintings, photographs and fabrics as sources of inspiration, often looking at the colours and materials used inside your home to inform what is subsequently selected for the space outside.

Although we believe in thinking big and the power of plenty, we are passionate about detail and finish as well. We choose the best materials the budget can manage, source old fixtures and fittings and track down innovative new materials and implement these in creative ways. For example, we have recently sourced fibreglass composite mesh panels, usually found in marinas, to cover a deep exposed gully around a house. We try to be as green as we can: we would prefer to arrange for an old iron gate to be restored rather than simply buy a new one and would rather work with what is already on site than simply sweep it away, if it can be salvaged and does not compromise the design concept.

Where we work – locations

Cornus Garden Design has clients in Kent, Surrey, East and West Sussex. We have also worked in Essex, Richmond, Berkshire and Devon. Cornus Garden Design is currently working with new clients on an exciting project near Zurich in Switzerland.