Contemporary Gardens Garden Designer Chiswick Garden designed by Karena Batstone & constructed by The Garden Builders
Beautifully structured contemporary family garden in Cheswick, west London, designed by Karena Batstone and constructed by The Garden Builders, features an impressive decking scheme laid out over a long, narrow space, complemented by attractive greenery.

Divided into four areas with plenty of bespoke elements, the garden creates a seductive outdoor environment for recreation, entertainment and children’s play. The garden is an excellent combination of hard and soft landscaping, geometric shapes and play of materials, disrupting the narrow, ‘corridor’ line of sight.

The family garden functions as a multi-purpose living extension with four distinct zones. Dividing up the area into smaller spaces is a popular technique to detract the eye from the narrowness of the garden.

A minimalist terrace paved with flame-finished basalt plays off several linear elements – a dining table, an aluminum pergola in powder-coated finish, and a rectangular reflective pond of corten steel, filled with black-dyed water. Special dyes, such as black dye, enhance the beauty of garden ponds, controls algae growth and provides depth and movement, creating a mirroring effect. Low mixed planting around the pond softens the metallic elements of the terrace. The strikingly simple arrangement of the terrace creates a quietly sophisticated space for relaxation and entertainment.

A lawn garden provides an elegant sweep of green to contrast with the hardscaping of the terrace and is separated from the remaining areas of the garden by a Yew hedge, which provides attractive vertical greenery.

The spectacular timber deck with sunken seating creates another engaging relaxation and entertainment zone. Featuring Kebony decking on a Millboard PlasPro sub-frame and a seamless fixing system, the decking boards are laid out in a serpentine pattern and comprise the main focal point of the garden. The timber, Shou-Sugi-Ban Kebony Brushed (Kiiro) finish, gives the contemporary design a cozy and warm outlook, which is heightened by the surrounding low mixed planting featuring grasses. Another unique feature of this area are the timber compost bins, also of Shou-Sugi-Ban Kebony Brushed (Kiiro) finish, adding another sustainability element to the garden design.

The short pathways extending from the square sunken area likewise create activity and traffic areas for people to explore the garden. Kebony is an eco-friendly hardwood alternative developed by a Norwegian company wherein softwood is treated with bio-liquids and cured and dried to increase thickness and approximate the colour of tropical hardwood. With similar characteristics to hardwood, Kebony is durable, low-maintenance and leaves a low carbon footprint. Over time, the rich, dark colour assumes a silvery-grey patina.

Bordered by lush, mixed planting, the decking provides a stunning pathway through the garden and gives the long, narrow space the illusion of width. The decking pattern continues through the artificial grass with putting green, where the compost bins are located.

A small, fourth area, featuring an in-ground trampoline, is for children’s play. Pleached fruit trees surround the perimeter walls and complete the planting scheme, providing privacy, structure and soft, contrasting green to the hardscaping elements.

At night, strategic garden lighting creates a mesmerising effect through the entire outdoor space, changing its character.
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