Start a new thread

1 to 20 of 28 replies


Well, our garden!

We have designed the main areas, the patio, paths, seating area, etc but don't have a clue as to the best place to start!?! 

In my dodgy sketch you can see a patio from which leads a couple of paths. One to a seating area, and one to another grass bit. 

The blue is a straight water feature running the width of the garden.

To give you an idea of size, the "stream" will be about 1m wide and the seating area is 4m x 3m ish.

1st question, where the heck do we start?!?

Thanks to all that read.



is the stream already there or do you need to dig it out, if so how are going to get water to it and what will stop the water draining away,what are your paths and patio going to be made of, which way is north, are there any buildings either side to throw shade

Are you making the best of evening sun in the seating area? Enjoy.

Hiya Simon and shelley

Welcome to the forum 

Your sketch suggests a garden 12 metres square...?

I would build the patio first.....have you considered materials for it? If done first, you have some where to sit whilst  resting/considering your stream excavations 

The stream would be next.  How do you propose doing this?  How deep?  

Am sure others will post suggestions

Looks like a nice project folks 

start nearest your house first! you don't want to be walking through a building site to get to " the done bit". Patio, as others have suggested, so you can sit and think about how the rest will work. Do you have anywhere planned for the messy bits? (shed for storing garden tools, compost bins etc) Sounds boring, but you will need them



What is the orange area? Do you need a rotary dryer? Or a washing line? Shed is a good idea, perhaps with a strong slightly sloped roof so that you can plant succulents on it? What era/colour is the architecture of the house; this will influence the paving material and the style of the garden. Will the stream be very hard edged and modern, or cottage garden and informal? Have you seen pictures of the effect you want? Barbecue area? Dining in the garden on summer evenings; is the area that gets the evening sun going to be big enough for a table and chairs? Why 2 paths? And presumably 2 bridges? Sorry to bombard you with questions, but as a designer queries like this send my little brain into overdrive!


Thank you all for the responses!!

A few answers, the garden is 108msq. 12m x 9m

The orange bit is the planned seating area. In the summer we were sat there on garden chairs till the sun set. It's what has driven us to get it sorted!

The water will need digging, and a modern hard edged finish. I'm considering putting a pump in place to get a flow or leave it as a still pool. I quite like the idea of putting a fountain in each third. Like the Water Quintet from Oase.

Why 2 paths. We quite like the idea of a chess board in the top corner, and small cafe table and 2 chairs. 2 bridges as we have a little terrier who we hope would use them rather than the water but its unlikely!!

we have a door in to a garage so storage isn't a issue.

I've added the aspect and dimensions

Hello Simon and shelley

I think it will look good.  I would at least instal  a pump.  Moving water is relaxing.  Three fountains?  It's growing on me   Any lights ....either in the fountains or stream edge?  Hey!  I'm even getting excited....would get involved if I lived nearby 

So, patio first.  The stream second. The rest can follow....viz., seating area, plants etc

Maybe post a picture or two as things progress?

Re your dog.  If anything like mine he will use the bridges.  He will just copy you 



Verdun - we couldn't keep our labrador out of ponds and rivers - very embarrassing at the Canal Pond at Chatsworth  

your paths and the water feature define really clear planting zones. You could go for more formal planting near your house, then it could become looser and wilder/ more romantic around your seating area. Scented plants near the patio and seating area would be very pleasant. There are lots of scented shrubs and perennials to choose from, that would provide structure even when not actually blooming and  then you could boost these with biennials and annuals, like nicotiana and stocks. If you enjoy the patio in the evening, nicotiana and evening primrose would be perfect as they start belting out perfume in the evening. However, that may not be your cup of tea at all and you might prefer something much more modern and minimalistic, or prairie style planting. It's so exciting having a whole garden to think about. As Artjak says, lots of things to consider...not least, what you really like


Can I suggest that you cost this out carefully - hard landscaping materials can be really expensive as can the stuff you need for a water feature, and it would be a shame to get short of funds and have to economise on the planting 

The plants though arguably one of the most important parts of a garden are way down the list. Not least because because our knowledge goes along the lines of "ooo, a purple one!"

The plan is to have a Moroccan inspired seating area. Detachable curtains on the sides. A firepit or even a cast iron wood burner in the middle.

As it is pretty much a whole garden project, we will gladly pictures of our progress.

This is what we are starting with. I'm stood on the current, small patio. You can just about make out Monty in the background..




Gg, I agree! Please keep us posted with the work in progress

Wow, you guys all sound almost as excited as we are!

Dovefromabove, I hear what you are saying but there will be no compromise. If we can't afford something we wait till we can 


star gaze lily

Looks great, where abouts on your garden plan is the house.  

Going for quality...I like that 

Star gaze lily, our lounge opens up on the the southern edge of the patio and the kitchen opens up on the eastern side. Hope that makes sense!?!

So given that the patio is being replaced with a bigger, smarter one, is it still best to start with that?

Should I dig out the water feature before starting on the seating area?


i found a picture I took of a model of the area when it was being built

 So just colored over it... The purple areas are already take care of. A fence squaring off the garden and isolating the driveway to the top, and a rendered wall on the right where our chickens will reside