As a garden designer in East Sussex I’ve been fortunate to work on a variety of projects in the past few years from city courtyards to large family gardens, tricky sloping sites and even two sensory gardens for schools. Each one brought its own unique challenges but with my creative vision and lots of hard work, I’m proud to say that my clients have been thrilled with the results. So whether yours is a small, scrubby backyard or several acres of lush rolling countryside, I’d be delighted to take a look and give you a quote. With 18 years of experience in horticulture and design, an in-depth knowledge of contemporary and historic gardens as well as a heartfelt love of plants and nature, I aim to design the garden that’s perfect for you. Volunteering with the gardening team at Great Dixter one day a week provides me with a wealth of inspiration and keeps me at the forefront of horticultural practice and planting innovation, all of which I can bring to your garden.
My approach is a simple one. First I like to find out a little bit about you and what you are looking for, as well as your estimated budget, expectations and ideas. Then I come to visit your garden - always my favourite part of the job! I imagine it is like an artist looking at a blank canvas. A million different things occur to me as I look around: I assess the surroundings, the relation of the garden to the house and the layout of the scheme. I think about the plants, the view, your requirements as well as the best use of space and movement round the garden. Then, after some discussion, I evolve my ideas into a coherent plan to create an oasis of beauty and inspiration.
This fresh and creative approach is precisely that which I took with my own garden '4 Waterworks Cottages'. Originally the garden was just a blank sloping lawn from front to back with random overgrown trees and shrubs. Over the next 8 years I developed it into a front, side and rear garden with terracing, new paths and sections to create a coherent design, enticing the visitor round the garden in a voyage of discovery. Full of exuberant planting, many of my favourites and some new trial specimens, my garden serves as a constant source of inspiration and I continue to develop it as it evolves over time. Gardens never stand still! If you’re interested in coming to see my garden, it is now open annually for the National Garden Scheme together with another garden I designed - 'Woodlands' in Broad Oak.
Indeed, design has always been an essential part of my working life and prior to horticulture I applied my talents to the fashion world. However, it was through gardening my small plot in London that I quickly came to realise the natural world was the only one I longed to be part of. Spending time outdoors, planning my garden and watching it develop and grow fulfilled me completely. So I switched careers. After gaining a distinction in a Horticulture, Garden Design & Construction BTEC I worked as a planting designer and gardener at a London company and studied for an MA in Garden History before moving to East Sussex in 2007. Here I worked for Bodiam Nursery before starting a family. Finally, with my talents and passion combined, I was ready to launch my own business and in 2010 Kristina Clode Garden Design was born.
Please contact me to arrange a consultation. I look forward to hearing from you.
Computer Aided Design for Garden Designers (Vectorworks), Courses 1-3 - Plumpton College 2015-2016
MA Garden History (Distinction) - Birkbeck University 2005-2007
BTEC National Certificate in Horticulture, Garden Design & Construction (Distinction) - Capel Manor College 2001-2002.
Awarded 'Best Student' of the course 2001-2002.
I am a pre-registered member of the Society of Garden Designers and have passed stage one of their adjudication process.
Garden History Papers Published
‘The Gardens of Witanhurst, Highgate, London’ in The London Gardener- Journal of the London Historic Parks and Gardens Trust, vol.: 20, edited by Todd Longstaffe-Gowan (London: 2016), pp.19-41.
‘The Life of Étienne Dupérac, Franco-Italian Renaissance Man’ in Fantasy, Form & Function – Postgraduate Research Papers in Garden History, edited by Barbara Simms (London: 2010), pp.43-52