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For this small rear garden in Balham, we were asked to completely transform the tired and dilapidated garden area into a contemporary entertaining space, whilst ensuring it still felt warm and inviting. Low maintenance planting and plentiful seating were top of the agenda for our busy professional client.


The garden is small but a perfectly average size for this area of SW London, however, the rear boundary is higher than average as the buildings behind are built on higher ground. Whereas this boundary previously felt quite enclosing, we used the space to form a crisp backdrop by using natural finish western red cedar battens laid horizontally. We then continued these strong, simple lines around the whole of the garden to give the effect of a larger space, that also seamlessly integrates the changing levels in the garden. To keep on budget and play with the idea of extending the boundaries, we saved existing boundaries that could be repaired and painted them with soft neutral shades of exterior paint, to lighten the side return and neighbouring boundary. A simple retaining bed constructed from block and render accommodates the change in ground level and supports a floating effect ‘L’ shape bench that provides flexible space for drinks or dinner parties. Evergreen planting using different leaf colours and shapes provides architectural interest throughout the year, including Pittosporums, Phormium and scented Trachelospermum.


The garden has been completely transformed and now provides a visually stunning exterior space from all viewpoints, including the kitchen, lounge and bedrooms. The seating is plentiful but forms a key feature that does not clutter the garden. The sawn beige sandstone and western red cedar compliment the period property whilst providing a warm, contemporary finish to the space.

Garden Club London have turned my garden into a fantastic space that still makes visitors to our house, stop and take a breath. They are professional, competitive and innovative in their ideas. A first rate company.

Faiza D, Balham



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