I presented my design for a Dog Friendly Back Garden to my clients last week. The space is a reasonably large North facing garden of an Edwardian house, which has been neglected for many years. My clients have recently renovated the house and would like a practical and usuable entertainment and relaxation space which is sympathetic to the needs of themselves and their puppy.
The current garden is dominated by some misplaced features; 3 fruit trees in the middle of the lawn, a shed just outside the dining room doors and a large broken greenhouse in the back right hand corner.
I recommend removing these and replacing the broken and mismatched fencing with new close board fencing on all sides.
My design seeks to create a large entertainment space with a raised hardwood deck running the width of the garden, allowing for an 8 person dining table, bbq and dog washing areas. An Acer tree in a planter will create a focal point from the kitchen. The dining area will feel partly enclosed using tall but semi transparent planting to create a feeling of seclusion from the rest of the garden.
Flower beds will be ground level, using the additional soil to level out the back of the garden. The existing Apple tree will be retained to provide privacy from the houses behind and will have an L shape wooden bench in front to provide additional seating. An Amelanchier will be planted in the opposite corner to balance out the design.
A shed in the far right hand corner will be screened using planting and climbers in front, providing a pleasant view from the kitchen
Dog friendly features include a paved perimeter path for exercise, an artificial lawn and dog friendly, hardy shrubs and herbaceous perennials and ornamental grasses to provide texture and movement. www.dailydogstuff.com has some other useful ideas and tips when designing a dog-friendly garden.
Detailed planting plan is to follow.