Check in here for all the latest from matt haddon gardens.
SPRING IS WORKING WONDERS
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 10th January 2019
Spring is working wonders through our gardens once again and as always that means it is a busy time - a time when the winter garden comes back to life and lush greenery hides all those parts of the garden that you wish you had changed or that you forgot to tidy up last year!
However it is also the ideal time to stop leaving things as they are, if you know they are not quite right for you. Gardens are a living, dynamic space and for them to remain gardens, as opposed to simply being little patches of disturbed wilderness, we need to actively edit out the plants that are taking over, add in new plants (whether purchased or split from large clumps of existing perennials), and create those feelings of both rhythm and unity which tie the space together into a coherent whole.
The alternative, of course, is to re-design the entire space if the interventions above do not achieve the desired feel you want for your garden. You may not achieve a maintenance free garden (in fact such a thing does not exist) but you could certainly create a space which requires less of your time to look good - allowing more time to be spent enjoying the summer!
Here at matt haddon gardens we can help with either approach to your outdoor space - whether it is to be tweaked or re-worked - and are happy to assist with anything from simple replanting of beds to more complex issues such as creating a feeling of space in tiny gardens, making sense of long and narrow gardens, solving the issues of sloping gardens or designing interest into larger expanses of landscape.
We have nine exciting projects on the drawing boards at the moment - from steeply sloping gardens to shady planting schemes to large country gardens - with three different builds also underway. Fortunately there is plenty of scope to take on more projects this spring and summer so if you would like to talk about how we can help you to transform your open space then please do not hesitate to get in touch.
With each new project comes the opportunity to further refine our ability to create gardens which meet their owners needs. One key aspect of this is the idea of sustainability. Although this is (too often) used as a buzz-word alongside vague notions of “being green” when it comes to designing our gardens it is a key element of what we offer. This is not just following the old adage of “right plant, right place” - which ensures that each plant has the best possible chance to survive and thrive with a minimum of human intervention - but also ensuring that ongoing maintenance requirements are as low as possible. Making sure that each scheme compliments not just the house and landscape but also fits with its owner’s time commitments is vital if a garden is look its best not just when newly installed but for years to come.
Our Back To Back garden at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park was a resounding success. We were awarded a Silver Gilt Medal and the judges said that the planting of the garden was “among the best on the showground”. With a mix of traditional plants such as hydrangeas, roses and yew topiary, alongside perennials and grasses, the garden became a tiny pocket haven of calm amidst the bustle of the show - both for the visitors who could truly relate to the style of the garden, and for the bees which appeared within minutes of the plants arriving and didn’t leave for the next two weeks!
However we are now back to reality with gusto. With a lot of new enquiries and our existing clients to complete designs for Tatton is now a distant memory. Please take a look at the video of the garden on our Portfolio page and if you would like to know more about how we can transform your garden please do not hesitate to get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org
A PLACE TO PONDER
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 26th March 2018
The recent cold snap has provided me with the opportunity to sit down and finalise a few details for our 2018 Show Garden. This year we are off to RHS Flower Show Tatton Park with our design “A Place To Ponder” - which will be in the Back To Back Garden category. A merging of classic design ideas with contemporary materials, the garden demonstrates what can be achieved even in a small area. July is going to be a busy month this year!
Thinking about spring though, 2018 has got off to a flying start with new commissions to design gardens across Yorkshire. We do still have some availability to start designs this Spring though so if you want to transform your garden please do not hesitate to get in touch at email@example.com or call on 07595 421910.
AN EXCITING 2018 AHEAD
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 25th January 2018
2018 has started well!
We have had confirmation that we will be designing a Back To Back show garden at RHS Flower Show Tatton Park in July - so watch this space for further details, starting with the completed concept sketch and ending with the finished garden!
We have also won a Best of Houzz Award for 2018 - for our Customer Service for the fourth consecutive year. This is awarded based on the number and quality of client reviews we receive, and it means so much to us that our work turning our clients’ dreams into reality is appreciated so much.
Alongside this we have had a number of new enquiries since Christmas and are looking forward to starting work on the initial concept designs for these gardens over the coming weeks - so there is no time to rest on our laurels!
We hope that your year has got off to a flying start as well but, if when you look outside at your garden you are thinking that you need a change, please do not hesitate to get in touch - either give us a call on 07595 421910 or drop us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A BUSY FEW MONTHS
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 05th October 2017
It has been some time since my last update to this blog - the simple fact is that I have been so busy designing and over- seeing the building of gardens from York and Harrogate to Beverley and Hornsea.
So as autumn is now upon us, and the inevitable tasks to prepare my own garden for winter loom, it is time to take stock and see what can be improved for next year. I must confess though, I am not a tidy gardener for the simple reason that tidiness reduces the biodiversity of a garden and I see my plot as a space shared with the birds, toads and mini-beasts.
However, a few new plants to revitalise and reinvigorate the borders (which have had the destructive attention of a puppy for the last few weeks) and perhaps some remedial work to the boundaries are needed...although what I’m really looking forward to are a few more sunny days to sit out and enjoy the autumn!
The last few months have been incredibly busy with new projects and garden builds. Fortunately as the sun starts to re-appear between the clouds, in the run up to the official start of Spring, I can start to re-visit the gardens that have been created and will be posting pictures of them once they have been planted up over the coming weeks and months.
2017 is set to be another great year, with many interesting designs in the pipeline. However it is never too early to get in touch if you want a new garden, individually tailored to your own needs and tastes, so if yours is not looking its best in the spring sunshine please do not hesitate to get in touch on the webform on this website, via email email@example.com or just call me on 07595 421910.
Everyone should have a great time relaxing, entertaining or simply tinkering in their garden - so if you aren’t please let me know.
A TRADITIONAL GARDEN
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 10th October 2016
Continuing the theme of video shorts of our gardens here is one that was built and planted this summer.
A traditional garden in a small space and it looks stunning.
Last winter we oversaw the building of a garden the key aim of which was to ensure maintenance time was reduced whilst sustainably re-using many of the materials (particularly the Yorkstone crazy paving) to be found on site.
Last week I had a chance to re-visit the garden and the video above gives a glimpse of what it looks like now. It is fantastic to go back to see a garden so well loved and cared for - and it will only get better as the years unfold.
It occurred to me earlier that I hadn’t updated my blog for a while…it has been a very busy few months! Therefore I thought I would share some pictures to give a glimpse of some of the jobs that I have been working on recently.
Although I may be busy though, summer is the time to sit in your garden and simply enjoy it. Whether with friends or children, barbecuing or relaxing alone, it is an opportunity to understand how you most use, and appreciate, your outdoor space.
Take some time to just enjoy the feel of the lawn beneath bare feet, the buzzing of the insects and the scent of the plants this month - and if your garden needs improving, or a complete overhaul, then please do not hesitate to get in touch.
As part of the design process the fundamental task I have is to understand what sort of garden you would like me to design. There is no right or wrong answer, and everyone is different, so here is something you might like to try.
Wait until you have five minutes of peace and then shut you eyes.
Imagine that you are about to push open a large oak gate, set between two gnarly old oak trees, and enter into your own secret garden. Now push the gate and step inside. What is it you see?
This will be what is important to you. It may be a large sunny glade, to enjoy the fleeting summer sun. It may have a generous area for barbecue, or outdoor kitchen, and enough space to fill with your friends. It may be full of birdsong - the joyous melody of the blackbird sat high and waiting for berries to ripen in the autumn. It may have an atmosphere of calm and tranquility or one of joy and sound. It may be full of colour - drifts of tulips and daffodils, giving way to swathes of bluebells and then foxgloves, then giving way to a plethora of echinacea, asters, rudbeckias and geranium.
If you can hold that vision for long enough to remember it then this is the starting point for your garden. A place that will draw you into it, a place that will draw family and friends when invited and a place you can share with the teeming life that will inhabit it - from blue tits (collecting caterpillars from your plants) to buff tailed bumblebees (pollinating your spring flowers).
The next step is to then make it happen…
So, when you are ready, call me to talk about it on 07595 421910
ANOTHER GARDEN BUILT…
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 05th May 2016
Only a quick blog update today as this is the busy time of year for all garden designers!
The image shows a garden recently completed - and waiting for the planting to fill out and fill the garden with colour and scent.
A clever design will transform even a small garden space making it feel larger, more inviting and providing everything you may have wished for.
Today is a day best spent avoiding the eponymous April showers and so I thought I would share a snapshot of one of our latest gardens which is almost finished - the change it has made to the space has been considerable.
Anyone who seeks to create their own outdoor space - whether dedicated to plants, sun-worship, barbecues or a haven of peace - imposes their own needs upon their garden, moulding from it what they want. The secret of course is to try to keep overall maintenance manageable and straight-forward so that you can maximise time spent enjoying yourself and not spend too long wrestling with planting beds that are too large to weed or lawns too fiddly to mow quickly - which is of course where good design comes in. Matching the time you have available to the way in which your put your garden together is vital if you want it to be a pleasure and not a chore.
I really need to get into my own garden now though as it needs a quick tidy so I’ll don waterproofs and boots just as soon as I’ve finished my latest design sketch….
If you would like help to make your garden both beautiful and manageable please do not hesitate to call me on 07595 421910.
Spring is the best time to re-think your garden
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 8th March 2016
I have been holding off on this blog update for a few weeks as I was hoping to post some images of a garden that is being built in East Yorkshire…but the rain has repeatedly delayed us from finishing (not to mention the snow)!
For that reason I’ve posted a glimpse of the blossom to come instead! New garden pictures will follow once we have a few days in the dry!
Weather aside, 2016 has been busy so far and looks set to be another great year with some really interesting design projects in the pipeline, as well as a number of previous designs moving to the build stage. From large paved sun terraces to plantings selected to hint at a prehistoric landscape (charting the evolution of plants - more Cretaceous Park than Jurassic Park), 2016 is set to be another fascinating year.
A few days before Christmas is the Winter Solstice - and 21st December is a date that most gardeners look forward to as it represents the last day when the nights are getting longer. As we sit inside, with wreaths of holly and ivy on the door, the days will soon be drawing out - and the garden will once again be a haven to escape into.
This year though is slightly different. Instead of frost and ice it is still warm enough for the grass to be growing and, in many places, for spring bulbs to be putting on an early growth spurt. Climate change may well force us to relook at what we can and can’t grow in the years to come but for now most plants in my garden seem to be doing very well!
Now is therefore a time to take stock, to decide what you want to change next year and, above all, to have a well deserved rest. As Christmas Day approaches my gardening will be a mostly indoor affair - skimming plant lists, magazines and nursery websites to see if there is anything new or, more importantly, anything else I can fit into my own garden!
As always if you find you need a little help deciding how to make changes please do not hesitate to get in touch.
YOUR GARDEN IN 2016
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 13th October 2015
As the leaves are turning to shades of red and orange and the nights are drawing in, now is the time to pause and take stock of your garden.
Although the festive season may be your next priority, contacting us this year will give us the time to work together to ensure that it is possible for your garden to be transformed in time for next spring or summer. Too often clients will contact us in May in the hope of having their garden transformed for the summer - and we are very good but we can’t work miracles (a stunning garden design takes time to develop and perfect and good landscapers are booked up some months in advance).
Therefore now is the ideal time to arrange for an initial design consultation. We will visit you in your garden to begin to develop an understanding of your hopes and desires for your outdoor space and we can also advise you on the likely budget you will require, as well as other practical considerations. We also often work with clients to deliver their gardens over a series of phases and we will be happy to work with you to implement your new garden to meet your available funds and your timescales.
So why not contact us on 07595 421910 for an initial chat and maybe next summer you could be sitting in your amazing new garden…
GARDENS BUILT AND GARDENS DESIGNED
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 28th September 2015
Another busy season is upon us when it comes to gardens. As the leaves start to turn and herbaceous plants prepare for the winter our gardens once again need a little TLC to keep them looking tidy.
Of course, there are exceptions. The image above is of a garden we have just completed and it is looking sharp, crisp and tidy. Our clients, needless to say, are very happy with the result.
Alternatively you could have a garden designed to be low maintenance from the outset - we are finalising a design for one at the moment which will be built over different levels, and will compliment a modern extension. The design provides plenty of visual interest but minimises the time needed to be spent maintaining the garden - by reducing areas of lawn and providing plantings that will mostly look after themselves.
Of course that’s not all we’re up to. There’s also a courtyard garden about to be finalised, a garden whose design is inspired by the paintings of Mark Rothko, a 1920s modernist garden, planting on banks, in woodlands, and next to offices, as well as a sensory garden for a nearby residential home - so it may be a time when nature gets to slow down but we are still working hard.
It is this breadth of scope that ensures our continuing passion for landscape design as each new garden presents its own challenges to be overcome. So if you have either a problem garden, or just a problem area within your garden, please do not hesitate to get in touch.
On Show Gardens & The Future
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 28th July 2015
Last Saturday saw a break in the clouds and a trip to Cheshire to see the RHS Tatton Park Flower Show. As a guest of the RHS I was there to discuss designing a garden for next year’s Show. This is something that I’d love to do again….I’m just concerned about the time it takes to produce a Show Garden (as if next year is anything like prior years then July will be my busiest time)!
For me though visiting a Flower Show is an opportunity to catch up with old friends, to meet new people and to cast a critically professional eye over the gardens laid out (playing the game of guess the medal awarded with each one, something for which I have a keen eye). Some say that Show Gardens are an extravagance but with a sustainable plan for their future use and a little design flair added to the melting pot they provide a fantastic source of inspiration for the gardener looking for ideas, and are a great shop window for designers and landscapers to display their skills.
So although this year’s Show season is drawing to an end (with just Malvern and Harrogate to come), perhaps you might plan to visit one during the next year. You never know I might even have a garden at one of them and you can pop over and say hello.
Enjoy your garden.
Creating a "new" garden
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 8th June 2015
One of the aims when creating many people’s gardens is to try to do so sustainably. This can mean different things to different people but we have interpreted it whilst working on a small town garden over the last year by re-using what was present when the owners bought the garden as well as introducing the plants, oak bench and timber posts which were used as part of our Gold Award winning garden at Harrogate Spring Flower Show. Too often show gardens end up being disposed of and this was something that we categorically did not want to happen and this project allowed us to find them a new home.
By ensuring that the plants have gone into the right places the garden is thriving and, along with the addition of a cedar deck, is now being enjoyed by the family - whereas before it was an uninspiring gravelled space that was rarely used.
It is therefore possible, by small changes across a series of phases, to make a big difference to a garden - transforming the aesthetics of a space whilst doing this sympathetically, affordably and creating a garden that doesn’t need constant maintenance.
If you would like us to help you to achieve similar results then please let us know.
Glimmers of Spring through the snow
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 5th February 2015
It may not feel like it when it is sleeting but spring is almost upon us. My time recently has been split between West Yorkshire and East Yorkshire, always managing to greet the heaviest of the snow!
February though looks to be an exciting month - already new enquiries are pouring in as people want to transform the gardens that they were not entirely happy with last year. Also you can feel that the night’s are drawing out again, meaning that we can work outside for longer and also that the bulbs are starting to break through the surface of the soil.
In the garden February is a time for tiding up. It will make a huge difference and, if you are looking to make changes, it will help you to get a feel for what you want to achieve.
If you would like help in realising those changes, please get in touch.
New Year, New Garden?
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 6th January 2015
Happy New Year.
As the days begin to lengthen once more thoughts will inevitably turn back to gardens - I know mine needs a good weeding! If you are thinking about having your garden re-designed this year them please take a look at our new guide to budgeting for a new garden here.
Back now to writing, preparing some new talks and preparing the final elements for a garden being built next week.
Listed Property Show 2015
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 4th November 2014
We’ll be there. Will you?
Get your tickets to The Listed Property Show 2015 in Harrogate for FREE when registered for in advance! Register for tickets at www.lpoc.co.uk/property-show/tickets or by calling 01795 844939.
Details of our Show Competition to follow soon ...
There is no simple table that can be provided for this, as every garden is unique, with its own complexities, and everybody will want different things from their garden.
As for any other consultant (for example an architect, surveyor or engineer) employing a professional garden designer is really about tapping into their knowledge and experience to ensure that you can have what you want ...
Usually people will have already made the decision to use a professional garden designer by the time I get to speak to them face-to-face. However some people who consider whether to work with a professional garden designer will ultimately decide not to - sometimes though, this might not have been the right choice.
Posted by: Matt Haddon | Date: 26th September 2014
The rules of thumb which I use when looking at initial costings are that you should budget at least £30 per square metre where you are transforming your garden through planting (with very little or no building work). If you are using built elements such as paving you should budget for these from £120 per square metre.