Garden Rooms

How to design beautiful 'garden rooms'

Residential landscaping

It's all about the space

Creating and manipulating space is a key part of successful landscape design, particularly with ever diminishing plot sizes and the need to create exterior spaces that can provide for all requirements of modern living, whether that be entertaining, family play or a quite place to relax and get away from it all.

Here are our 10 top tips for creating good beautiful garden rooms.

Get to know the site

Residential landscapers need to get a thorough understanding of a site (and how it works with regards to orientation, solar access, proximity to neighbours, privacy and noise) before they start on a project. 

Understand the needs of the user but also provide flexibility for change

The best landscapes are those that are adaptable and provide opportunity for multiple forms of use.

Balance the architectural and the organic

It is good to design spaces that form a balance between static architectural control and comfort with the wild and ever changing dynamic of the landscape.  

Add partitions to Create Separate Garden rooms

By adding partitions or vertical elements that divide space, you can create separate garden rooms. 

Although this effectively divides a larger space into smaller, it creates a feeling of a larger complete space by hiding and revealing these spaces when someone travels through the garden.

Often the dividing wall can have a degree of permeability whether it is through the material selection or with the inclusion of an opening to provide glimpses to spaces beyond which creates a feeling of 'wanting to discover what is around the corner'.

Provide a change in level

A level change can help to clearly define space in a landscape and enhance a sense of moving from one space to another.

Create spatial dimension that is appropriate for the intended use

Designing space in the landscape is no different to designing space within a home.  A room's function is greatly influenced by the distance between the walls that contain it. It is much the same for external 'garden rooms'. For example, a quiet space for sitting and reading a book will always feel more enticing when it's in a cozy, smaller space, at a 'human' scale and tucked away.

Select Similar materials to that of the Surrounding architecture 

Having materials that are common with the building creates a sense that the garden is a continuation of that architectural language and can continue a sense of moving through rooms.    

Vistas and views, seclusion and intimacy

Understanding foreground, middle ground and background in a landscape can help create openness and enclosure. A well placed ornament or feature that draws the eye to the back of a garden can exemplify the feeling of space and openness. In contrast, a lush vertical garden wall in a small space can create a feeling of enclosure.

Borrowed landscape is often overlooked in small gardens 

Utilizing neighbouring views, trees etc can add to your own garden ambience or greenery without having to plant your own and take up valuable space in a small garden. 

USE Large, dramatic foliage in small gardens

This helps to create a lush feeling within a small space, whilst also changing the scale of small area, helping it to feel larger.

It can also help to blur the garden boundary between one property and the next, making your space seem larger than it actually is.  Choose foliage and textural plants that are attractive year round, and do not require constant feeling and deadheading like most seasonal flowers do.  This will help ensure your garden doesn’t have an unattractive ‘dead spot’ during certain times of the year.

If you are thinking of re-designing your garden, please feel free to contact Phase3. 


P: +61 8 9337 6985
A: Unit 4, 11 Milson Place, O'Connor, Perth, WA, 6163