a very fine balance

P1110678When friends of ours recently down-sized in a seaside town in Fife, on the east coast of Scotland, they decided that this new, much smaller space demanded careful thought. Having been used to the huge, back-breaking demands of a much larger garden, they were thrilled at the prospect of a more low-maintenance design.

There was no doubt that water had to play a big part in the spirit of this new space, being so near to the Firth of Forth (just visible from their home), but with such a limited area, the balance between the planting, any water-feature and the hard surfaces had to be struck carefully.

The advice of a garden designer was sought and he brought all their ideas to life, creating a beautiful garden which suits their needs as a busy family and warm, gregarious hosts.

I loved it, the instant I saw it.

There’s a beautifully harmonious feel to the layout, which works extremely well as a whole – light and delicate planting and a fine counterbalance between the water in the rill and the hard surfaces, between light, shade and textures. The overall effect is cool, calm, tranquil and there are seamless transitions as you move through the various spaces. It’s still early days for the plant-life, but the effect they’re aiming for in time is a soft, foamy, frothy one, to further counter the straight lines and hard surfaces. I think it’s already fabulous!

P1110686P1110680P1110672P1110679The ‘bridges’ across the rill are a wonderful feature, making little islands in the stream, letting the water visually dissect the garden, while still allowing an easy step over the gap. Loved these!

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2 thoughts on “a very fine balance

  1. Loved all of these pictures! Wow–what an inspirational garden. Makes me shudder to think of what I have to do outside—seems to be always rainy when I want to outside! I gather these people don’t have a dog–or, if they do, where does doggie go pee pee? Or just run around and create chaos and havoc in the dirt???? Loved the pics, Alison. Will study them carefully and learn 🙂

  2. Hi Debbie, so pleased you enjoyed the images! No, they don’t have a dog and that’s exactly what ours did, wreak havoc with muddy paws, after heading straight into the water, of course! 😉

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