The Minimalist Garden

The client requested a low maintenance garden as he was downsizing into a new build home from a larger house with a big garden. He wanted no lawn, and plants that would provide interest all year round with some seasonal changes that involved grasses. He wanted to feel private and enclosed without feeling the garden was small. He wanted an extension of his living space to provide a focus from the house and to replace a conservatory he'd had at his last home. A relaxing space to sit in and enjoy a gin and tonic!

The design of this garden provides a seamless transition from house to garden,the placement of the pleached trees provide an inner courtyard within a larger space. This garden has been designed to make the client feel peaceful, private and spacious. The client wanted to create a stylish and classically contemporary garden, he particularly wanted structured formal planting without too many ‘flowers’ which I considered in the design phase. I added four borders which 'hold' the inner courtyard in place and filled them with clipped topiary ilex crenata,four taxus baccata domes in each corner to add another dimension to the borders. Hakonechloa macra planted on the edges to add a limey green colour and softness to the planting scheme. The borders are edged in charred oak. Charred oak steps lead to the smaller upper terrace which dealt with level change in the garden. Each side of the steps is flanked by two large fibreglass planters filled with white agapanthus and Japanese grass for fluidity and texture.

The side passage entrance to the garden has a simple border with two acer trees,grasses and a large planter set between the trees to add another dimension to the planting. A beautiful shed finishes this area off.

This planting design is to give the client a sense of enclosure by using tall pleached trees. The pleached Prunus lusitanica 'Myrtifolia' has been decided on for this design,not only for the elegant form it brings to the garden but, also for it's hawthorn-scented white flowers in June. The garden is filled with the scent in summer,the trees are clipped after flowering and keep their shape and leaf throughout winter. These trees make a fine,clipped privacy screen whilst the client relaxes in his garden. The colour scheme of the garden is green,white, grey and black. A strictly limited palette of plants were used to achieve this:

The final result is an almost seamless continuation of the style and colour of the house into the garden.

The planting design for this garden has been shortlisted for an industry award by Pro landscaper.

Award ceremony was held in November 2018

Runner up in the Planting Design category


15th Century yeoman's Hall House in Tonbridge with a 5 acre site. Complete redevelopment over 5 years.

A  grade II listed building in Kent. A garden designed with maximum impact in its first season.Using a muted palette of colours amongst box balls and grasses to provide a garden for all seasons.

A major rejuvenation and design of a large town garden.Instant impact wanted by the client.


Berkeley Homes


Every inch of the plots are considered and used to maximise the clients enjoyment they will get from their garden. These gardens are 10 x 5 meters. Victoria designs this area to be an extra living and relaxing space which unfolds from the indoor space to the outdoors.

The clients have lived in Oman and travelled to Morrocco on more than one occasion and wanted a garden that embodied the feel of Marrakesh. They had a shed which they had bought and I had to incorporate this into the design, also a fountain from Morrocco. They wanted the garden to feel lush, inviting and to give their new house the WOW factor. They didn't want grass but happy to tend to any plants. The wanted a garden that was full of scent and colour in the summer months and still looked good throughout the colder months as the kitchen/diner opens out onto the garden. As you walk into the house this is a visible area hence them wanting the wow factor. Colour played a big role throughout the garden to bring the design to life. 

Raised borders were rendered and painted in brick red to accentuate the moroccan feel of the garden and the red used is a compliment to the teal blue paint used on the cabin. A small step up, which runs the width of the paving to address the level change in the garden adds another feature. The fence on one side and the back gate were clad in horizontal style batons to hide the original fence. The raised borders protrude out either side of the dining area where the two standard olive trees are planted to increase the feeling of lushness and privacy.

 Plants and trees that brought a mediterranean feel were chosen for the garden. I used a large Olea europaea as a specimen tree brought in for its knarled trunk as much as for its silvery foliage. Two further standard, mushroom shaped olive trees are planted either side of the dining area. Pleached, evergreen eleagnus trees are planted to increase the feeling of privacy. Planted underneath the row of pleached trees is a row of trachelospermum jasminoides on bamboo frames to fill the garden with scent during the summer. Lavender, rosemary, pittesporum nanum tobira fill the raised borders that surround the garden, spikes of phormium ''evening glow'' and gold ray punctuate the planting adding to the mediterranean-style feel. A standard Ficus carica 'Brown Turkey' and the fourth standard olive tree are planted within the paving and surrounded with thyme at the end of the garden beside the hidden seating area.

This garden has been shortlisted for an industry award by PRO LANDSCAPER .

“Small Project BIG IMPACT” Award

Award ceremony was held in November 2018

Delighted to have won this award for The Moroccan Garden!

Winner: Moroccan Garden, by Victoria Truman Landscape and Garden Design

Judges’ comments included: “Good design presentation, love this garden it has charm, warmth, atmosphere, maturity, vibrant colours and great plants. Lovely to see a warm welcoming garden of character.

“Very difficult to pull off a Moroccan garden in the UK and this is an excellent effort”.


Urban Outdoor Entertaining Space

The clients are based in overseas in Asia and wanted a low maintenance entertaining space to include dining and lounging areas with a fire table. Evergreen topiary with cloud trees were used as a nod to the clients connection with Asia. Cedar timber was used to clad the original fencing, a bespoke cedar wood pergola was built to cover the dining area to allow for privacy whilst dining.

Jasmine has been planted on each leg of the pergola so in time that will become a jasmine covered area,filled with scent in the summer months.

Lighting has been installed to extend the enjoyment of the garden into the evenings.

The lounge area sits behind a privacy screen on the other side of the pergola,a large comfortable L shaped sofa and a fire table complete this area. As urban gardens tend to be on constant view, I pay a great deal of attention to detail, using good quality materials and finishes. Garden lighting is a key feature.

Mediterranean Garden:

The clients brief was a mediterranean style garden, a stylish urban space with contemporary, elegant design using simple materials and formal low-maintenance planting to soften the architectural structure of the space. This garden was designed to maximise the outdoor space that leads directly off their kitchen diner, when the patio doors are open it was important that there was some continuum into the garden. this increases the space of the living area and becomes more of an outdoor room as well as a garden. Using a row of pleached trees increases the privacy within the garden. Porcelain encaustic cement tiled terrace increase the mediterranean feel in the garden,as does rendered raised beds filled with lavender and rosemary interspaced with evergreen ilex crenata topiary balls to add structure to the planting. Jasmine scrambling on the walls, eventually totally covering the brickwork so this will be a scent, filled haven in the summertime. Three specimen trees give the garden height,a sculptural feel and provide winter interest.

This garden was completed January 2019