Saturday, 14 September 2013

Mini Versailles

At the beginning of this year one of our regular clients decided to change his tennis court; it was seldom used and in need of restoration, so he made the big decision to demolish it and enlarge the garden.

Our first challenge was to try and move a 20 year old pleached Lime.  I had great reservations as this was so established and half the roots were underneath the tennis court.  So in January when it was bitterly cold and the tree was dormant we lifted it with a forklift and planted it in its new location. 

In its new home, looking as though nothing has happened.

Next step was to take all the tarmac off the top of the court, whilst keeping some of the hard core in place to make the new paths.  I am never that happy surveying so was delighted we were working on a perfect rectangle and wouldn't need to do any serious measuring!  Never assume....  the levels were wrong, the sides were crooked - no wonder the tennis balls kept getting lost!  Anyway thanks to a clever digger driver we kept on track.

Here you can just see the beds taking shape.
Fingers crossed and watering the tree, even though it is still dormant

The contractors took just under a week to remove the hard core, take away the rubble and then replenish the beds with top soil.  

Not sure about the new statue!

Our client wanted a garden with an Italian influence combined with prairie planting, so the next stage was our exciting delivery from Italy.  Having always hankered after a Cedar of Lebanon, now at last was the perfect place for him to realise his dream.  The Cedar tree is very slow growing so we ordered a rather large specimen and of course this caused a few logistical problems!

Now for the edging.. at least it was getting warmer

This we did with small wooden posts and wooden edging, using metal for the curves.  The hardest part was getting the levels correct, as the original tennis court was 8 inches higher at one end.  Once the edging was secured the levels had to be built up with hard core, more top soil and finally gravel.

And finally...

Some one called it mini Versailles  - I think not, but I cant wait to start planting - this will probably in late Oct early November.  Will  keep you posted.

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