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NEW for Spring 2019: Design Lessons for the Garden - a short course in Garden Design (week 1 of course, held over four mornings during May and June)

A NEW introductory garden design course studying the key principles of garden design in the acclaimed setting of Turn End house and garden. Led by garden designer Deborah Lewis. £160 for course held over 4 mornings: Tuesday 14th May, Tuesday 21st May, Tuesday 4th June and Tuesday 11th June 2019, 10.00-12.30).

Using Turn End as an exemplary model for the integration of house & garden design, this course takes you from the house out into the beautiful series of garden spaces that comprise Turn End. The aim of this course is to help you find the potential in your own garden; to know your garden style and to have a far greater understanding of the principles of good Garden Design. We also hope to inspire you to be more creative in experimenting with your own garden at home.

  • Design principles explained in a simple, accessible and inspirational way

  • Learning in small groups in the private gardens and RIBA award-winning house at Turn End

  • Helping you to see the possibilities for your garden in a new light

The course begins inside the house at Turn End; a place where the design of inside/outside is so integrated that each can be seen to elevate the success of the other. From here we continue into the private gardens where over 4 mornings we look at the key principles of garden design. Each week we spend part of our time outside looking at the variety of garden settings here in relation to the original design plans; so that you are able to ‘live’ the dynamics of good design.

Garden Design principles introduced on this course:

  • Relating the house to the garden: Bringing the outside in; Creating a sense of flow between house and garden

  • Sense of Place

  • Simplicity

  • Use of primary shapes

  • Formality and symmetry

  • Informality and asymmetry

  • Garden structures

  • Balance & Proportion

  • Views, vistas and focal points

  • Repetition and rhythm

  • Unity and harmony

Participants are encouraged to bring photos of their own homes/gardens each week, as when time allows there will be the opportunity for round-table discussion to relate what is learned back to real garden examples. Course numbers are limited to 8 to enable this more interactive, round-table approach. On the final morning you will prepare a garden ‘Vision Board’ – helping you to focus on your garden style and inspire you in going forward.

This course is suitable for absolute beginners as well as garden-lovers keen to learn more. The course is also suitable for those who are ‘stuck’ with their gardens and looking for inspiration to move them forward, and for those interested in achieving a greater sense of harmony between house and garden. The course is also helpful for those considering the sensitive placement of new buildings or home-offices within their gardens, or considering extending their home into the garden.

Deborah Lewis

Deborah has been designing gardens of every size for over twenty years. Her designs have been featured in The London Evening Standard, Your Garden magazine and Garden Inspirations. She has also worked as a garden writer and tutored at the BCA before designing and teaching her own courses. Deborah is currently studying the wild herbs we use to benefit our health and she plans to bring this new aspect into her garden design work as her knowledge develops.

£160 for course held over four mornings. Course notes, refreshments and vision board materials are provided.

Tuesday 14th May, Tuesday 21st May, Tuesday 4th June and Tuesday 11th June. The course is also available in Autumn. Autumn dates: Tuesdays 17th September, 24th September, 1st October, 8th October 2019.


Buy Tickets here

Participant’s Reviews taken from Deborah’s previous Introductory Garden Design Course

Sally H, Berks:

Deborah is a natural teacher, she inspires her students with her warmth and clear passion for plants and design. There were so many ideas to take away from each session and the course notes were invaluable. I now feel I understand what it takes to make a space “work” and I will be using these simple techniques to create something special and unique to me.

Emma W, Wargrave:

This is a great course to get you started on your own garden design or help you tweak an existing garden and I would highly recommend it. Having just completed an extension which has really opened the house up to the garden, I was looking for ideas on how to make the most of the outdoor space. The course takes you through the elements of garden design providing examples of real gardens, before and after shots, and examples of gardens you can visit, all of which help you to see the principles of garden design in practice. Deborah uses a variety of gardens as examples in all sizes so I could really see how the ideas she covered could be used in my own space. Each week we brought in photos of our own gardens and discussed what we wanted to do with them. This really helped to clarify which areas I want to concentrate on most and the ideas from Deborah and the rest of the group were extremely helpful. Deborah was obviously thinking about our gardens from week to week and was able to give targeted plant suggestions or design ideas to each of us.

Michelle A, Wooburn Common:

I really got a huge amount of value from the course. It is not only very inspirational but practically grounded in theory. It’s given me the confidence to get out and give it a go and sparked a new passion in gardening.

Lesley W, Marlow:

I really enjoyed the garden design course. I felt that Deborah wanted to get to know my personality and could then help and advise me in creating a special garden that would reflect how I live and want to relax.

Nicky S, Twford:

Deborah's course was so inspiring and informative. I am someone who has always gardened very intuitively but has limited knowledge of garden design, structure and plant names. Deborah hit exactly the right balance of teaching us about historical/contemporary garden design, giving lots of plant/flower information and absolutely giving us the confidence to play with and extend/develop our own ideas. Deborah is passionate about gardens and her friendly, open and encouraging manner really helped me to see new and exciting possibilities for my own garden. It was also very interesting working within a group of people discussing ideas and being actively encouraged to support and inspire each other. I would highly recommend this course to anyone, regardless of how much gardening knowledge they have.

Gretta G, Maidenhead:

Deborah is a skilled and knowledgeable course leader who makes the subject come alive. In four weeks I was amazed at the quality and quantity of information that I received. To someone with scant knowledge of garden planning, it was enabling to begin to understand the underlying principles which were clearly and concisely put forward by Deborah. This was a great introduction to gardening and design and has whetted my appetite for more.

Angela G, Pinner:

I thought it was a wonderful, inspiring, well-structured and beautifully delivered course. I would highly recommend it.