Kim Wendelken of Key Garden Design has just won a silver-gilt medal for her garden design at this year’s BBC Gardeners’ World Live show. The winning garden was also featured on the Gardeners’ World TV Show. Kim graduated from the KLC Open Learning Diploma in Garden Design in 2005 and explains how the concept for her winning garden came about:-
Basically, I had the title Opposite Attraction in my head for ages - thinking how I could design a 'garden' around that title.
I took my inspiration from a very simple phrase that I came across on the internet - "Nothing functions in isolation; everything functions in relationship with everything else”. This statement had nothing to do with garden design, infact it came from a site dealing with relationships, but it represents how, when we design, we really do need to take every aspect into consideration, the clients, the budget, the site etc.
I also felt it was important to get the message across that as designers we have an obligation to design gardens which reflect the people or purpose for which the garden was commissioned, so therefore, I designed it around the relationship of a married couple who had 'commissioned' the garden.
What it also did was to show how 'opposites' do work together. Lots of shiny stainless steel together with natural stone found in the path, which comprised black basalt chippings and black limestone paving slabs. Although contemporary in design, it had a more traditonal planting style, with mixed shrub and perennials working together in what was a small area. The plants chosen attracted a lot of insect life, especially the Physocarpus 'Diablo', which was covered in bumble bees everyday. We even had a butterfly turn up and sit in the delphiniums!!
I can only thank KLC for having given such good tuition and support over the period I was studying on the Open Learning course, and hopefully, there will be many other students who will take inspiration to take the 'bull by the horns and go for it'!