This family home in north London boasts a large minimal white lounge space lit by floor-length windows. The garden beyond is the real focal point in the space – it functions instead of the art on the wall. So this picture’s designed to pack a punch.

The client wanted a sense of profusion, ebullience and lushness to contrast with the empty spaces of the house. This planting approach actually works well in smaller spaces, screening and dividing the garden into distinct and private spaces. Exuberant evergreens make great living net curtains!

The planting here is in three layers;

  1. exotics as an all-year backdrop; chusan palms, loquat, fatsia, bamboo
  2. structural & architectural perennials for mid-level interest; phormium, melianthus, cardoon thistle, banana
  3. smaller perennials for zingy colour, scent and attracting bees; alliums, salvia, geum, knautia macedonia, chocolate cosmos

It’s a typical fenced London terrace, so climbers are also important to clothe and blur the boundaries. Here a variety of ivies, clematis and honeysuckle are repeated down the length of the space, which is decked in hardwood. A series of raised rendered planting beds add visual interest and make gardening much easier.

This space is now both admired from within and is used all year round for dinners, lounging and reading the papers. Nice.