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  • Writer's pictureSarah Kay

How to create a practical but beautiful family front garden?

With front garden space at a premium, particularly in London, how do you create a front garden for a family which incorporates important storage elements but still looks like a garden?

My E5 Family Front Garden Design

My solution for my clients, a growing Clapton family, is to carve up the available space cleverly to allow for accessible and practical storage solutions whilst maximising the plant material in the garden.

Existing garden

As you can see from the image above, the existing garden is obscured from the street by an ugly rendered wall and contains no planting other than a large Silver Birch tree. The path material is unsuitable as it gets slippery when wet and there is no structure to the main part of the garden.

My design creates an elegant boundary and entrance which allows views into the garden and vertical planting space for climbers onto bespoke railings, painted the same colour as the front door.

Front wall - build in progress

New Raj Sandstone steps and path will provide a non-slip entrance to the garden, complemented with a matching sett edge and coping stones for the piers and side boundary.

A bespoke pine batten double bin store will flank the path, providing easy access to the bins and a pine batten bike store for 4 bikes will sit along the left hand boundary, with a cut out for the bay window. The bike store will have a green roof to maximise the soft landscaping in the garden and access to it will be via a permeable gravel area to help with rain water run off.

An Amelanchier tree in the front left corner gives vertical and 3 seasons of interest and a flower bed running along the length of the front wall will provide an ever-changing colourful view into the garden from the street and from the front room of the house. An additional flower bed to the right side of the door will contain a Wisteria to be trained around the front door producing a fragrant entrance to the house.

The hard landscaping should be completed next week with railings, gate and bin and bike stores to be installed by December. Planting will be completed in the Spring.


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