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  • Writer's pictureSarah Kay

New from the studio - my N16 Woodland planting design

I was approached a few months ago by a client in Stoke Newington who wanted to improve the planting in their back garden, which had been recently landscaped to increase the size of the planting areas and create a smaller patio space.


This N16 back garden is surrounded by a woodland to the back which contains mature trees and so I took this borrowed landscape as the inspiration for the new planting design, giving the space a loose woodland feel and maximing the views from the kitchen through the patio doors and a large picture window.


The beds near the house are in all day shade and so existing Cornus elegantissima, Viburnum plicatum and Mahonia 'Soft Caress' will be supported by ferns and shade loving ground covers including Ajuga and Brunnera. Astrantia, Hellebores and Thalictrum will provide height in these beds.


An Acer 'Bi Ho' will be the striking focal point in the picture window with it's four season display starting with light green foliage edged with salmon pink, turning mid green in Summer, yellow and red in Autumn leaving yellowy orange stems in the Winter. This colour sequence is reflected in the planting with white, yellow and orange tones featuring alongside the blues of the Ajuga, Vinca and Brunnera flowers.



images of woodland plants
Shade planting - N16 Woodland Garden

On the left hand side of the garden the centre bed is in full sun or partial shade with the evergreen forms of Anemanthele lessoniana, Rosmarinus officinalis,Salvia purpurea, Euphoribia robbaie punctuated with tall herbeaous perennials including Verbena bonariensis, Geum 'Totally Tangerine', Iris 'Benton Nigel' and Salvia 'Caradonna'. Around the garden the path edges are softened with Hakonechloa, Luzula nivea and Erigeron karvinskianus.


A multi stem Amelanchier will provide a 3 season interest view from the kitchen doors and will link to the trees beyond the boundaries.


images showing sun loving plants
Sun planting - N16 Woodland Garden

Plan showing planting design
Planting Plan - N16 Woodland Garden

These artists impressions show the views from the kitchen compared to the existing views.


sketch of back garden created in Procreate
Artist's impression of view through kitchen doors

Patio doors leading to back garden
Existing view through kitchen doors


Sketch of back garden planting created in Procreate
Artist's impression through picture window

view of back garden with lawn tree and shrubs
Existing view through picture window

I'm hoping to plant this in late August/early September so watch this space for progress.

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