Best Way to Build a Corner Garden

Corner plots are a challenge to the garden designer because they generally offer a larger than average amount of space yet incorporate a wide turn. The problem is how best to combine both parts of the garden and impose a feeling of unity on the entire area.

This garden uses the space to include something for everyone. There are lots of surprises, such as the seating area in the bor­der and the statue, and there is a touch of formality in the rose garden. This contrasts with the lush green lawn, sweeping majestically around the house, which is, in turn, set against the sharply angled patio and raised beds, the gentle reflections of water and the pretty alpines. This is a garden to enjoy. It has places to sit, to eat, to play and to relax.

Build Corner Garden Best Way to Build a Corner Garden


The two parts of the garden have been linked by the use of a sweeping lawn, and from either part of the garden it is obvious that it continues into the part that is not immedi­ately visible. The second linking feature is the patio, which is set at an angle to the house. It is a pivotal point for the whole garden and sets the axis on the diagonal, which effec­tively ties the two parts together. It is meant to be seen, so large pavers have been used. It juts out into the lawn, creating a striking contrast in the central area of the garden.

Each part of this lovely garden has its own distinctive character, and attention is cleverly drawn to each one in different ways. The rose garden and gazebo offer a small formal area for where you can sit in peace and quiet. The raised alpine bed brings plants up to eye level and takes the eye across the garden to glimpse the flowerbeds on the far boundary.

The curved, sweeping character of the lawn makes use of the large area that is avail­able and draws attention away from the sharp angles of the garden, leaving curvy flowerbeds, which are filled with scented and coloured plants that bring life and warmth to the plot.

Build Corner Garden 1 Best Way to Build a Corner Garden

Another secret seating area is a surprise: an informal seat from which the garden can be enjoyed. The overall impression of the garden is one of openness and space, and the lawn is deliberately kept clear of ornamenta­tion because there is lots of interest all around this garden and the curve of the lawn is absolutely crucial to uniting the two parts of the garden.

The statue acts as a focal point, drawing the eye to this corner and thereby creating a long vista.


The ornamental trees break up the longest boundary, and their soft shapes and greenery will add peace and gentle movement to the garden.

In the borders lots of colours have been used to create warmth and vibrancy. Many differently shaped plants have been included to create a strongly shaped, deep boundary to the garden. The tall majestic spires of Delphinium ‘Mighty Atom’ and Digitalis purpurea (foxglove) contrast wonderfully with plants such as Mentha spicata (mint) and Sedum spectabile. Scented plants will release their fragrance, and visually striking plants like Eryngium giganteum add charac­ter. There are some architectural plants, such as Magnolia stellata ‘Waterlily’, and Ilex x altaclerensis ‘Golden King’ (holly) adds punctuation. Generally the planting is deep, encircling the garden to give total privacy and shelter.

Many of the plants in the garden have long seasons of interest. Acer griseum (paper-bark maple), for example, has beautiful foliage and peeling bark. Plants with stun­ning but delicate flowers, like Meconopsis betonicifolia (Himalayan blue poppy) and Platycodon grandiflorus (balloon flower), contrast with the strong foliage interest of Aucuba japonica f. longifolia ‘Salicifolia’ and Rheum palmatum.

Build Corner Garden 2 Best Way to Build a Corner Garden

The shady corner is used to grow wood­land plants and ferns, while the sunnier borders will be a blaze of colour in the summer months.

The entire boundary is clothed with climbing plants, forming a green back­ground to the flowers and creating an enclosed, private feel.

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