process

We help you to define exactly what you want from your outside space so that, in addition to performing various practical functions, the space reflects the needs, personalities and tastes of the people who will use it.
Viridarium has years of experience about site conditions, planting, colour, construction, hard landscaping, lighting and drainage etc – which will help produce an individual design that will work for you.  Every project is different and this is obviously reflected in the services we provide and fees we charge. Typically, however, most projects fall into several distinct phases, some or all can be appropriate for differing gardens and landscape spaces. :-

1. Initial Discussion
Often on the telephone, this allows us to clarify certain key issues such as the plot size, location, and your broad objectives. A convenient date and time is then agreed for the first meeting.
2. First Project Meeting
The purpose of this is to gain a proper understanding of your needs and thoughts and the unique features of the plot, the style and period of your property and the surrounding environment. We discuss what your garden will be used for and by whom. During this meeting Douglas will show you examples of previous designs. The following list of design stages and elements will be discussed and the appropriate ones selected to form the basis of the commission.
Following this meeting we give you a comprehensive, itemised breakdown of fees for the design of your garden, in writing.   This fee can be a fixed sum depending upon the stages or elements required or alternatively be a percentage fee based on likely construction costs.  There is no hard and fast rule about this, it is generally project or budget related.  On receipt of your written instruction and acceptance, we proceed to the next stage:
3. Site Survey
Before commencing the design, a fully detailed survey is prepared, which includes the position of the property, boundaries, trees and all of the other existing elements and ground levels.  This may be undertaken by Viridarium or by a survey company- it is normally a matter of scale which will decide what is most applicable.



4. Site Meeting
A meeting may be required following the site survey to clarify certain design aspects or requirements of the brief. Typically a full set of site pictures will be taken at this stage and access may be required to the house to ensure that key views are taken into consideration. At this stage Douglas will try to get an idea of your style and likes or dislikes.
5. Sketch Design
This is the point at which we commit the design ideas to paper. Our proposed design for the garden is presented to you, in person, in sketch form. It gives a very clear indication of how things will look and Douglas explains any areas of uncertainty.  At this stage image overlays or perspective sketches may also be used to illustrate proposed schemes.  This is a two way process and relies very much on your thoughts and comments.
6. Detailed Design
Following your approval of the concept design, allowing for modifications should they be necessary, we then work up a highly detailed and accurately scaled drawing of your new garden. This drawing is presented for your final approval before proceeding to the planting design. 
Plans are typically in black and white but can be coloured upon request.


7. Planting Plan
Taking into account site conditions, ie, soil conditions, aspect and your preferences, a detailed planting plan is produced and presented to you.

8. Construction Drawings
Detailed construction drawings are prepared for all of the hard landscape elements, ie, steps, walls, pergolas and ponds, etc. Drainage, site section and setting out drawings are prepared at this stage.

9. Specifications
We prepare, in addition to the design and construction drawings, written specifications and scopes of work, to enable landscape contractors to submit itemised quotations, on a like for like basis, for the building and planting of your garden.




10. Construction
We do not undertake the physical implementation of the design but work in a similar way to architects. All of the drawings and documentation are typically forwarded to at least three reputable landscape contractors. They then visit you and your garden and provide their itemised quotations.

11. Contract monitoring
We do, if requested, monitor the construction of the garden or landscape project. However this service is not covered by our design fee and is calculated separately on completion of all of the design work. Usually we charge for monitoring the project on a ‘per visit’ basis and the number of visits required is estimated/agreed when the scope of the project is clear. 

 

Hourly rates are also given for any additional works that may be required throughout the process.  Items such as preparing maintenance and management plans, submission of funding packages or tree surveys can also be undertaken.

Travel overseas, or involving flying, will be by business class. Should the outgoing flight be particularly early an overnight stay in an airport hotel is often necessary. Taxis, rail and other disbursements are charged as extras, whether at home or abroad.

 
Copyright 2017 Garden Design Scotland. Glasgow. Aberdeen. Landscape Architecture .