Passionate about getting the most
from your outside spaces

m:07976 721537 | t:01543 622321

in     by Joyce Bullock 26-01-2017

Beautiful rear garden transformation in Staffordshire.The varying levels created one or two headaches and some fabulous opportunities to create this stunning space. Now in three levels the rear boundary is 2m higher than the bottom patio, with oak sleepers and gabion baskets used for retention.  Smooth, sawn paving gives a crisp, contemorary finish.  Softness is added with the lush green lawn, scented plants near the patio and shrubs and herbaceous plants on larger beds, all chosen to add colour and interest throughout the year.

This stunning garden transformation took place in summer in this sunny rear garden.

The garden is 2metres higher at the rear boundary, than the house and required lots of 'head scratching' both in the design and build stage. The seemingly simple and stylish result belies the complexity of the site. Having such changes of level requires retention and thorough planning.


Oak upright sleepers and gabion baskets were used to help retain the upper levels of the garden, glass balustrade offers security on the top level,whilst smooth, polished sandstone paving completes the contemporary makeover.

Sunny garden makeover, levels retained by oak sleepers, laid both vertical and horizontal, with stone filled gabion baskets used to add industrial chic

show steps up from main patio, to mid level with lawn and steppeing stones through to steps up to top level.

gabion baskets, upright oak sleepers, smooth sandstone paving and pot of lavender.

The varying levels give great privacy and the aspect offers a gloriously sunny patio. Bi-fold doors open onto the patio and modern seating makes for a great social space. A blank neighbouring wall was clad with a bespoke feature of split oak to break up the expanse of brick. Steps lead up onto the middle level where the lawn is edged in tumbled blocks - this allows for easier maintenance and retains the integrity and sharpness of the design throughout the year.

Bespoke wall feature, created with split oak beams, with random heights, to cover neighbouring wall and expanse of brick. Steps are created with the long aspect Bradstone paving of sawn sandstone.

Tumbled block edge (Eatons), in charcoal colour is used to edge the lawn.  This flat topped block gives a crisp finish to the lawn and bed and makes for easy maintenance.

The beds next to the patio contain herbs and scented plants. Further steps lead up to the to level, the 'Gin & Tonic' patio, where the evening sun can be enjoyed. A seat is created from oak and gabion baskets and a small patio with stepping stones through gravel to additional planting beds. Glass balustrade provides safety and allows for a full view of the garden.

On the top level there is a further patio which catches the evening sun, a great space for a G&T! Raised beds maintain a bed along the rear boundary and provides space for some delightful shrubs and herbaceous perennials.  The random laid smooth paving runs out into a gravel bed which leads to a triangular planting bed, this contains larger shrubs.  Glass balustrade maintains safety whilst allowing a full view of the garden.

Plants were selected for their colour, fragrance and seasonal interest, wish herbs available at easy picking height next to the lower level. Sumer flowering herbaceous plants and choice shrubs have flowers and fragrance.

Top level, the upper patio is great for evening sun so ideal for a glass of dry white!  From here you have a full view of the garden, from the smart and stylish lower patio, laid with long aspect smooth sandstone with its comfortable outdoor sofa and social space, to the middle level with steps, herb planted beds and stepping stones through the lawn, to the glass balustrade edged top patio.

Close up of glass balustrade, used on top level patio.  Allows for garden to be viewed from both top and bottom, whilst providing safety. You can see the tops of the upright sleepers, the steps created with the long aspect paving slabs and the matching finish paving on the top level.t

Design: Joyce Bullock Garden Design
Build: Big Green Room
Photography: Richard Kiely Photography