We may be familiar with the gardens designers have created for their clients, but what happens in their own backyards? This fascinating book takes a peek at the gardens of some of the world's most influential designers, investigating how they differ from their commissioned work, the design process, and how they reflect their owner's design philosophy. Private gardens are often places for experimentation, either with untried plants, novel construction techniques or innovative ways of handling space. Some designers use their gardens as 'gallery spaces' - perfect representations of the heart and soul of their work. Others may be radically different to a designer's commissioned projects. That private gardens are the site for experimentation, suggests that a peek through the garden gate will be a privileged look into the future. Designers are under less pressure in their own gardens and they are inevitably more personal. The mask is sure to slip a little. We hope to see something of the personality of the designer revealed, and perhaps a sense of what they wish their clients would agree to, but don't always dare...As well as discussing their influences and design ethos, each designer will provide a garden plan, garden history timeline and key plant list, as well as one great, under-utilised idea. The international list of designers includes Piet Oudolf (Netherlands), Ulf Nordfjell (Sweden), Isabelle Greene (USA), Juan Grimm (Chile), and Tom Stuart-Smith (UK)
Noel Kingsbury is uniquely placed to interpret the work of the leading garden makers. A respected designer in his own right, he has been influential in bringing new planting styles to the UK from Europe and the US. He writes for 'Gardens Illustrated' and 'The Garden', and has a column in 'Homes and Gardens'. Other books include The New Perennial Garden, Designing with Plants, and Gardens by Design.