Dog Friendly Tropical Garden 

Small dog-friendly garden in Bracknell, Berkshire with Tropical planting 
The brief 
The owners of this typical small rear garden in Ascot, Berkshire wanted a garden with a tropical/exotic planting scheme, with more interest and plenty of space to sit, entertain and enjoy outdoor living. A very important part was to keep their two boisterous dogs away from the plants and to use artificial turf to survive some rough treatment from the dogs. 
The design 
The new garden design features curves and circles. This give a sense of movement around the garden and also focus the eye inwards to make the space feel much larger as well as being more interesting. All the borders are raised above ground level to prevent the dogs damaging the plants. The planting is a combination of hardy palms, other architectural plants, grasses, colourful perennials and climbers that give an exotic, tropical feel, but which will also withstand our UK climate. 
Maxmising the space 
Designing a small garden is all about making the most of every inch of space. Requirements are usually the same as for a larger space, so it’s always a challenge to work to the brief without cluttering the space. It’s important to resist the temptation to put in smaller structures which will only make the garden seem smaller. 
Tricking the eye 
There are several ways a garden designer can create the illusion that the garden is larger. Introducing level changes such as raised planters is a great way to trick the eye into believing the garden is larger. Instead of going straight to the boundary fence, the eye will stop on the planters first and the brain perceives a bigger surface area. Using larger format pavers will also create the feeling of more space due to there being fewer grout lines and a more seamless surface area. 



Garden design in Ascot Berkshire Garden design in Ascot Berkshire
Garden design in Ascot Berkshire Garden design in Ascot Berkshire
Garden design in Ascot Berkshire Garden design in Ascot Berkshire
Raised beds 
To make the garden seem larger and keep the dogs away from the planting all the borders were raised either with timber retaining walls, or rendered blockwork.  
Dining and entertaining 
The large terrace provides enough space for casual seating and a dining table. A smaller, circular paved area is the perfect place for a comfy armchair to enjoy a morning cup of tea. 
The lawns use artificial turf to suit the needs of the clients two boisterous dogs and facilitate easy cleaning. The turfed areas comprise two interlocking circles, separated by a path, giving dynamism and creating an interesting route around the garden despite its small size. 
Using circles and curves 
The garden design scheme makes use of circles and curves. In a small garden the use of circular shapes focuses the eye inside the garden and is a very good way to make the garden seem larger.  
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