All Posts Gardens by Peter Donegan Garden Design

Back Garden Landscaping: Portmarnock, Dublin

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Sometimes in garden landscaping, it’s not so much what a garden has become but also – and in some cases moreso – what it was before.

And it is that transformation that I can see in the future in my sometimes very funny head that kind of reminds me of those late night shopping weight loss adverts. You know the ones…. here’s Jimmy with his old trouser pants the size of a tent and now he’s the width of a very thin squirrel, all because he used the ab-buster-express for just 3 weeks with extra added vbefore and after images now on your screen. You get the picture I’m trying to paint ?

And it is that before and after that I do love so dearly in my creating of gardens.

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Phase 1 in any garden is always to almost take a pause and see what is there that is worth retaining. Often enough – as one might looking at the pictures above – this amounts to zero. But there were one or two tall specimens that I liked here. What I didn’t like was that straight line path to the shed that eliminated a potential and spacious airy feel to the place.

Of note: In small gardens it’s not the greatest idea to split an already small area into even smaller spaces. It just makes it look smaller. Note to self – overuse of the word smaller.

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What-not-wanted removed and dusty construction out of the way, a new rolled lawn was dropped around serrated steppings required to get to the shed whilst the boundary backdrops were brought together to create a better sense of space. Whilst in the planting department, sub-section similar colour section, the plant list used included of note the very stunning pink stem Acer palmatum ‘Sango-kaku’ and the flower of the Daphne mexereum ‘Rubra’; And of foliage the Dicksonia antartica and the Phyllostachis aurea.

My knowledge of botanical latin aside, the big [ the clients that is ] objective in this garden was to transform it from a space where one would not wish to spend any time – glances at before photos above – and to make it feel like a garden, a place called home and where one could happily sit for a while.

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Peter Donegan:

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