Saturday, March 14, 2009

The garden design

Yesterday Jonathan, the garden designer, came over with his concept plan for the front yard. My first reaction was, "Oh it's way too formal." But after looking at it and discussing it I can see just how this design works to solve the problems we have with the yard.

The problems are the shade and dryness created by the line of cedars and other trees on the boulevard. Also we wanted to find a way to screen the traffic and the road from our view. But there are many rules in the municipality of Saanich that limit how high fences and screens can be in front of the property. And they also refuse to cut or allow us to cut any trees in front. Either they're protected of they're on Saanich property. We thought of putting a berm on the boulevard but that turns out to be a no-no as well. The weight of the soil will harm the roots of the sacrosanct cedars.

So the designer has used layers of plantings with boxwood hedges to form a garden room with a grassy area and then placing behind them along the boulevard some trees and shrubs set among various drought-tolerant native plants. The more I look at the plan the better I like it.

It also includes the change of the driveway from the front to the side of the property with plantings all along the front to shield us from the road. So now we have to proceed to ask permission of Saanich to move the driveway and landscape their road frontage. I have no idea how this will go. I'll be contacting them on Monday. Here's hoping they'll approve.


  1. This is exciting! I envy you the potential of new garden rooms. How long does it take for the permit process?

  2. The woman at the desk at Saanich Hall said the driveway permit takes about a week. I'd guess that's if there are no snags. Then there are the negotiations with the parks people about the impact of the landscaping on the protected trees. That could take a while. Wish me luck.


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