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Design process

Designing your garden, our complete garden design service

We deliver a comprehensive garden design service for our clients from initial concept to finished garden.

Creating the beautiful gardens and outdoor living spaces our clients dream of takes care, coordination and know-how. And whether it's a courtyard space or a large-scale landscape garden, every project and every client is unique.

The following steps provide a useful overview of the 'typical' garden design process.

Step 1: Initial consultation and brief

Every garden design project starts with an initial consultation and site visit. These early conversations are an opportunity for us to discuss and agree the functional and aesthetic requirements and aspirations for your garden, to create an agreed 'client brief'.

Step 2: Site survey and analysis

This a foundational information-gathering stage of the garden design process. It usually includes a site visit by Colm Joseph to undertake a detailed analysis of your current garden and the commissioning of a topographic survey of the site.

Step 3: Outline garden design plans

Informed by the client brief and our site analysis, we get to work on the garden design ideas for your new garden. This results in an outline design proposal, presented to you in the form of a garden plan, a 3D CAD model of your garden, illustrations of your new garden, example images and material palettes, all helping you visualise how your new garden will look.

Colm Joseph Gardens Cambridge garden design courtyard plan

Step 4: Landscape masterplan

Once you're happy with the outline design proposal, we produce a final landscape masterplan drawing, which captures the agreed layout design of your new garden.

Step 5: Detailed design and specification

We then work to detail all aspects of the design, including hard landscape elements (construction drawings, specifications for paving, steps, walling, seating, water features, etc.), alongside all soft landscaping details (planting plans, specifications, plant schedules, tree selection, etc.). This step may include close coordination with other professionals involved in the project (architects, engineers, etc.) and planning applications, as needed.

Step 6: Sourcing a landscape contractor

We can recommend suitably high-quality professional landscape contractors from our network to undertake the garden build. We will help coordinate the quotation process on your behalf, either with a single, preferred contractor or via a restricted tender process in which two or more recommended contractors are invited to quote for the garden build.

Colm Joseph Gardens Cambridge garden design contemporary courtyard work in progress

Step 7: Garden build and planting

With a professional landscape contractor in place, we will monitor the garden build on your behalf, helping ensure the garden is built as per our design and to the highest quality standards.

Step 8: Post-completion and after-care

Gardens are living spaces open to the elements and to seasonal change and all gardens require some maintenance. During the project, we will communicate the key maintenance requirements for the new garden and advise clients on how to keep their garden looking beautiful for many years to come.

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