When a show garden shouts out the versatility and appeal of a hard landscaping material, it pays to take notice. When the garden wins, not only Gold, but also Best in Category and People’s Choice for that category, you know you’re onto something. This is exactly what happened with Space Within, one of the five entries in the brand-new Mindfulness Garden category at RHS Chatsworth this month.
Space Within, designed By Rae Wilkinson, RHS Chatsworth Flower Show 2019
Space Within, designed by Rae Wilkinson and built by G K Wilson Landscape Services, stars DesignBoard Luna, one of our most popular colours. It welcomed visitors onto the garden, and created the central seating area.
This grey composite decking toned beautifully with both the aggregate used and the pebble benches created by sculptor Ben Barrell. “I was looking for a more sustainable, environmentally sound decking option,” says Rae, “and one which had a pale silvered look to tone with the other garden elements.” The sustainable element is also what gives DesignBoard its natural look and you can read more in The Secret Ingredient that Makes DesignBoard Composite Decking so Tough.
A raised area of DesignBoard Luna creates the perfect space for quiet contemplation and mindfulness
Incorporating contemporary decking helped make the tiny plot, measuring only 6 x 4 metres, feel more spacious. The deck boards were orientated to emphasise the width of the garden. Rae’s design had visitors entering at an angle and subtly slowed their progress by placing the direction of lay of the boards across the garden, both at the entrance (where it indicates how a space could be attached from a decked area in a domestic garden, and on the seating area.
The horizontals created by the 4mm gaps between the boards supported the lines of planting which encouraged the visitor to wend their path on the approach to the meditation area and were repeated on either side of the deck.
Lines were balanced with curves and a particularly striking detail was the placing of the trees so that they were growing through the deck. This, as you can see, really embedded the deck in the garden so that, although the decking was on top of the ground rather than set down into it, it didn’t feel or look like extraneous detail. On to contrary, it created a destination and a plinth for the sculptural benches – somewhere for a deliberate act of mindfulness rather than a casual place to sit.
DesignBoard Luna makes a perfect pale background for luscious green planting
The size of the circle within which each tree was planted allowed for growth over time and the edging to each circle creates a detail that echoes the curve of the moon gates. “We decided to face these circles with black powder-coated steel so that it picked up on this element elsewhere in the garden and made a feature of the cut-outs,” says Rae.
DesignBoard can be cut with the same tools that you’d use for timber. The next stage is straight-forward too. “It was an easy product to work with as it has its own fixing systems,” she adds.
Rae created a welcoming, calming spot that made you want to walk right into it. In doing so, she also showed how DesignBoard composite decking can add focus to a design.
If you’d like more information on how to use DesignBoard or to have free samples sent to you, then contact us. In the meantime, very many congratulations to Rae on a rewarding and well-rewarded garden design.