Wellesley’s English Garden

“I just wanted to say how grateful we are that you did this job - the garden that you have helped bring to life is truly wonderful, and we are thrilled with the beauty and practicality of it, and the joy that it has and will continue to bring to our family. It has certainly exceeded our expectations and this is large part due to your passion, vision, energy and partnership on the project.”

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When we first laid eyes on this beautiful Wellesley home, the big question was “Where’s the front walkway?”

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The Builder designed a lengthy paver walkway from the driveway to the mudroom and then on to the front door.

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Landscape Architect, Steve Woods and Designer, Faith Michaels set about to draw a plan that would honor and add to the grace and beauty of the home and deliver the English garden that the homeowner had dreamed of.

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First off, we dug out the heavily compacted front yard and added proper drainage from the downspouts to new drywells. We added in multiple yards of composted loam to prep the yard for new lawn and planting beds.

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Next, we began building an oversized, asymetrical, bluestone landing and with granite steps leading from the street.

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Two large hydrangeas flank the front door and a variety of evergreens and shade loving plants nestle in along the new stairs and landing.

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The new front walkway looks like it was always there!

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We turned the long paver walkway into a natural bluestone chip pathway connecting the front door with the new landing in front of the mudroom.

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We lined the walkway with Peonies, catmint, lirope and autumn clematis. A fall underplanting of allium will yield a colorful show come spring.

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Next year’s plans includes a rose garden by the front door.

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With the front complete, we moved to the backyard and on to the plans for a dreamy English Garden.

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The backyard had a lot of challenges. The compacted lawn and beds made it impossible to add any hardscape and plantings. When it rained, it became a pond. We had to remove yards of packed material, install a drainage system and bring in new composted loam.

To make a very linear space look bigger than it actually was, we built two entry landings and stepping stones leading to an oversized terrace. Steve’s design leads you through the garden into what feels like a very large landscape.

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Masons Luiz and Lucas Netto sourced the perfect stones for a stairway to the upper rest area.

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An antique trough flows with the soft sounds of water.

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Year one of this project already yields color, texture, and of course, the butterflies.

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Photos courtesy of Peggy Stander

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Design by Steve Woods, RLA

Powered by Luiz, Lucas, Brandy, Lorena, Eric, Gio, James, Nick, Michelle and Paul.