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Sarah Darlington Gardens - A Growing Business in the Wincanton Area

Tuesday 15 June 2010, 21:15
By Sarah Darlington

Sarah Darlington'Half of what I plant just dies'; 'I'm not really interested in gardening, I just want a place to relax in the evening with a glass of wine'; 'I'd like to attract more wildlife into the garden'; 'Now the kids have grown up, we want to get rid of the trampoline and make the garden a place we can enjoy'.

These are comments I hear all the time as a garden designer. Most of the people I work with just want to make their garden a part of their home they can really enjoy. As gardens get smaller, they also become more important to us – our outside rooms. For many of us, though, the prospect of transforming the garden is quite daunting and mistakes can be costly.

A Darlington Garden
Plants for a new border, carefully chosen to look good together and provide year-round interest.

We've all impulsively bought plants which look fab in the garden centre and then regretted our mistake as the plant dies because it's in the wrong place, we couldn't find anywhere to put it or it was only going to bloom for a few weeks anyway. Of course, £6.99 here or there isn't going to break the bank but it's not just the money. It's dispiriting and discouraging when plants die for no other apparent reason than it was you that planted them.

When it comes to hard landscaping, the costs, of course, are much higher and it's really important to get it right so that you have the garden you love. This is where it can really help to buy in the experience of someone else who can advise you on what works, and perhaps more importantly, what doesn't.

A garden is a long term investment and if you get it right, it will give you years of pleasure, add to the value of your home and become a small but important contribution to wildlife habitat.

Garden designers come in all shapes and sizes and offer a variety of services from consultancy to the full monty – design and build from start to finish. I start with a free initial consultation where I have a look at your garden and we have the opportunity to talk about what you want from it. This is important because when it comes down to it, this is all about you – it's your garden and you're going to live with it, not the designer. The design process then breaks down into three chunks: creating ideas, creating a detailed plan and creating the actual garden. For many people, an ideas pack with sketches and drawings and ideas for planting and materials is enough. Once they've got an idea of where they want the garden to go, they are away. Other situations require a detailed plan with all the information required so landscapers can tender for the work, or the client can build the garden him or herself. Alternatively, you can sit back and I can organise the whole thing for you from conception to planting, using reliable landscapers and suppliers.

If you would like to find out more, have a look at my website, or email me:


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