Hidden gem in Dalkey

Marriage

of house and garden

One of our favourite projects is this lovely garden that required a gentle intervention to create a setting for the well composed architectural design.

The property, a corner site, had an existing dwelling dating from the 1930s, but this was entirely updated and given a new but elegantly retrospective look by Robert Bourke architects with a terracotta tiled roofline echoing the original and neighbouring houses. To the main structure a pavilion was added with a similar pitched roof finished with the same type of tiles. This is complemented with timber finishes. Externally, board mark concrete walls are used to help define the spaces and account for level changes.

The centrally placed house and clever architectural design resulted in their being several garden spaces created including an orchard area, front garden space, kitchen garden, lawn area and lusciously planted borders that are overlooked by the new granite patio at the rear of the house. The house provides nice-framed views to these different garden areas and we wanted to provide something nice to look at in each view.

Each of these garden zones has its own character but they are tied together by an underlying desire that the gardens be natural in appearance. The clients loved the garden when they first bought the house and wanted to retain its intrinsic qualities.

To this end, we did not go overboard with materials or features. We used natural stone to create seating areas and stepping-stones through the grass to provide access around the garden. We designed a natural timber fence as a backdrop on which we added climbing plants. Planting elsewhere includes lawn areas broken up by soft perennial planting, which also acts as a backdrop. There are fruit trees to the side garden, and a natural closed-in feeling is provided by retained trees and hedging that were sensitively “tidied up” as part of the new garden installation.

Tags:
architectural design, coastal garden design, exterior living, garden rooms, house and garden, low maintenance planting, natural paving, outdoor dining, Planting design, soft planting, Spacious lawn