New Build Court Yard Garden

We were commissioned to create this court yard garden design – sited in an exclusive new build development in the Pontcanna area of Cardiff. We also supplied the magnificent planters from a UK based business – whom often work with and are a trade only supply.

The Brief – The Old Laundry

Situation: Rear, urban court yard garden.

Area: approximately 35m2

Aspect: North East facing.

Environmental conditions: Fully enclosed rear garden with walls and fences of varying heights to all exposed sides. Direct sun on NE positioned patio area in the mid to late afternoon. With morning sun to the East-facing aspect.

Garden uses/users: Self and partner. A garden to sit and spend more time in/relaxation. Used days/evenings/weekends, mostly in the warmer months.

The brief was for a low maintenance sanctuary. Using materials and colours sympathetic to the development and its heritage of an old laundry.

Our clients knew very little about plants. So the scheme had to be easy to maintain and provide habitat for wildlife/insects, as well as year round interest. As well as minimising its environmental impact, by using materials embedded in the design that would last for decades.

Court Yard Garden Design

Compact, North East facing garden in a former industrial urban setting. The style of the new garden will echo the materials and colours used for the house. As well as acknowledging the former industrial heritage of the Laundry Quarter. The design layout will bring movement and flow into the garden, using curved lines and circular shapes and planting.


Structure is the backbone of design.

Designed to echo the colours and materials used for the house and acknowledge the heritage of the Laundry Quarter. Warm bronze colours of corten steel planters complement the hues of ornamental grasses as they change to coppers and golds through the seasons.

Contemporary, elegant materials include use of Core-Ten steel raised circular planters, which provide architectural structure and height. These are softened by the wispy grasses and trailing perennials. The theme is continued with curved steel edging and a circular steel tree ring. A core-Ten steel waterbowl provides additional interest. Timeless and earthy, warm-hued gravels accentuate the calm design. With the material visually connecting different areas and serving as soothing negative space. There will be barefoot-friendly pavers forming a pathway through to the new sun patio area.

Flexible Core-Ten steel edging to delineate areas and form curves. Such as the pathway through garden. Using wood effect porcelain paving slabs to match the new sun patio with ‘Flamingo’ gravel surround. This can also be planted into with low level, drought resistant plants.

Self binding gravel (choice of colours) to provide hard Standing areas around planters. This stays more firm underfoot compared to traditional loose gravel surfaces and as gravel, remains water permeable.

Planting Court Yard Garden Design

Planting is what completes a garden.

We have used different grasses to create, height, softness and movement, form and structure. A few select perennials will add splashes of blues, purples and pinks. These will pop out throughout the year with contrasting form and texture for added interest. The purples, pinks and blues are the perfect complement. Acting as a foil to the coppers and bronzes of the core-ten and the brick from the building.

A hardy, perennial, geranium which has a spreading or trailing habit if grown over the side of a container. Each lavender-blue, saucer-shaped flower grows up to 50mm across, and has a white eye with purple veining. Very long flowering and very
low maintenance.

With attention to climate change, planting will be drought resistant once established. What is more, it is attractive to pollinators. A specimen tree in the far left corner will add height. Whilst also being a focal point for graceful year-round interest , as well as providing dappled shade to the seating area.

Our plant selection process takes into account

  • The soil type and aspect of your garden
  • Light and moisture levels in your garden
  • The style you would like for your garden
  • How much time you want to spend on plant/garden maintenance
  • Any special requirements you have told us about