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Garden Design by Maven Jade Goto

Written by Hayley southwood


Posted on February 21 2019

You may remember a few weeks ago I wrote a blog post all about why we nearly didn't buy this house. When we viewed it we were both totally overwhelmed by the size of the garden, well field that came with it. An acre and a half of garden in fact! Then my head started planning what we could use this space for and of course if you know anything about me you will know it involved my work! it is my passion and this garden and house could be a completely new way for me to work, give our shoppers and our Southwood Social Hub members a completely new experience. 


As with anything, when you need a trusted trades person I look no further than the hub. We have the most incredible maven, garden designer Jade Goto within our community. Jade came up from Brighton to visit us and see if she could give us some inspiration and boy she delivered in bucket loads!


You can still see the garden tour Jade and I did together over on my instastories as a highlight HERE, We chatted about how we would like to use the garden for work, fun and socialising of course! 


Jade went away for a week or so and sent us some amazing ideas I would love to share with you all. Now don't get too excited we definitely won't be doing all this in one go but it is so good to have a plan written up. A vision to see us into the future. It was also really important to us the garden space was low maintenance as we both work more than full time hours. 


These are the notes that Jade took from our first meeting-

Meeting with Hayley – Milton Keynes. Feb 7th 2019-02-18 


1.    Discussed - Stable yard:

    • Pathway to Stable lined with aromatic (i.e. Lavender & Rosemary) plants in pots.
    • A space to entertain and relax.
    • A space for events & workshops.
    • Supper clubs.
    • An indoor/ outdoor room.
    • Outdoor kitchen/ Pizza Oven.
    • Wood burner.
    • Festoon Lighting.
    • Corrugated roof to the North third of area.
    • A trellis or similar between wall and roof to screen the housing.
    • A long table in the uncovered area.
    • Keep an area of the courtyard to south facing aspect for summer dining/ entertaining.


    2.    Discussed - Field:
      • Needs to be low maintenance but look beautiful.
      • Wildflower Meadows.
      • Mow Paths and central meeting areas.
      • Swedish midsummers eve.
      • Areas for marquees and events in centre.
      • Walk through meadow to arrive there.
      • The areas are flexible and non-permanent.
      • Car-Parking x permeable cellular system but screen.
      • Retain solar panels but screen.
      • Birch Woodland an option. These also bring in the Scandinavian element. As do the meadows.
      • Bunding/ Earthworks an option.
      • Fill in pond.
      • Move Monkey Puzzle.
      • Continue Beech hedge along?
      • Remove self-seeded trees.
      • Retain fruit trees.
      • Could plant more fruit trees and create an orchard.
      • Put a plan on the space as a whole rather than using the front section and letting the rest become dead space.
      • The plan does not need to be implemented in one go. It can evolve.


       Gardens to Visit

      • Great Dixter: Pot Gardens near the front of the house. Wonderful Gardens.
      • Sussex Prairies: A good example of Prairie planting for future possibilities.
      • Eltham Palace: Mowed meadows with views over London.
      • Derek Jarman’s Garden at Dungerness: Just because it is fantastic.
      • Anywhere that has a wildflower meadow. There is a great one at Spring Gardens Nurseries down on the South Coast near worthing. It is small but beautiful. But I am sure there will be good examples near you.


      Here are Jade's plans drawn up for our garden, they are not scale but you give you a really clear idea of what we would like to achieve in the future. Below you can see our existing garden.

      It is going to take us years and years but the future is very exciting! 




      Image borrowed from Pinterest but source unfound!




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