The clients won this garden design package in a competition. They extended the back of the house in Essex a few years ago and have now turned their attentions to the garden with a view to creating something more dynamic and exciting. They have two young children who use the existing trampoline. There is a summerhouse in the right back corner of the garden which is to remain. Other than that the space is devoid of any features that the clients wish to keep.

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This family garden design aims to provide something for all the family. To avoid detracting from the backdrop view of the garden from the family room, the existing trampoline will be replaced with a rectangular version and relocated down the side of the house to the right. This area will also benefit from a timber pergola. Once the children have grown out of the trampoline it could be replaced with a hot tub or a den/seating area. At the end of the pergola a raised bed constructed from railway sleepers will give the family the opportunity to grow fruit and vegetables.

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The existing patio will be extended so that the existing table and chairs can be positioned parallel to the fences which will create more room and make the space more comfortable to use. Along the edge of the patio a row of illuminated planters containing box balls will create an eye-catching divide between the patio and the rest of the space. A slate pathway running down the garden will bisect a central artificial lawn, to terminate in a second, smaller slate patio in the bottom left corner. This seating area will be an ideal spot to catch the last of the summer afternoon sun. An open pergola will partially enclose this area, with the cross beams of the pergola jutting out at increasing intervals to create vertical frames as you look down the garden. Each of these archways will support an illuminated cube, with a box balls planted at the bottom of the timber posts.

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The planting scheme is architectural and modern with plenty of evergreen specimens to provide structure. Tall grasses and blousey purple blooms will soften the whole scheme and give the space a sense of movement.

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