Do you really want to upgrade your garden? That’ s a good thing! Because, who said that sophisticated and eco-friendly are not compatible?
A well-designed garden is like an extension of your personality. A garden design of this kind takes things to a higher level when it comes to working out the ideal planting plan. The sky is the limit.
A garden bursting with colour
We carefully consider what colour shades and combinations you want, when you want the plants to bloom and, last but not least, all the top-end sustainable accessories you would like: from hot tubs to arbours, romantic hidden patios to a petanque court, a zen-garden to a swimming pond.
No matter what you like, we can deliver the design of your dreams down to the last detail, as long as you don’t want a flawless garden that looks like a golf course.
Investing in a garden that will last for generations
Every project is labeled ‘sustainable and eco-friendly’,
which simply means that it aims to be low-maintenance and is designed to respect nature so that your great-grandchildren can still enjoy it in a hundred years from now.
Food forest garden
A food forest is the absolute best! It is a place where an edible paradise and high nature value meet! A low-maintenance nature reserve to feast on.
Once the food forest is planted, you will hardly ever have to water or fertilise it.
The food forest is an infinite food source, it is a cornucopia.
What is a food forest
An ordinary forest is a collection of large trees, small trees, shrubs, mushrooms, climbing plants and much more. A forest doesn’t need watering or fertilising and you certainly don’t need to use pesticides. A food forest follows the principles of a normal forest, but will almost entirely consist of edible species.
A food forest for every type of environment
A food forest or food forest edge can be perfectly integrated in any garden. Do you have a larger plot of land? Then have a look here for more information.
Click here for more information on large-scale food forests.
A food forest created near Ypres, in partnership with Dries Delanote (Mille Couleurs), Filip Goudeseune and Diderik Claerebout (De Woudezel)
For people who want a beautiful garden without maintenance
What? A low-maintenance garden? That
doesn’t exist, does it? Yes, it does!
Market research for Commensalist showed that people’s number one garden preference is a low-maintenance garden. Many of them hate their garden and would rather not have one. Why? Because they have to spend too much time working in it. That is a very common misconception.
A garden where pleasure comes first
It is perfectly possible to create a garden that is entirely focused on low maintenance. Commensalist designs are characterised by their focus on ‘ecological and sustainable’, meaning that they require only minimal human intervention for watering, fertilising and maintenance. A good plan guarantees that you can enjoy your garden, and that it serves its owner and not the other way around. We already have enough work, so unless you enjoy getting your hands dirty, relaxation is what we are looking for in the garden.
Bye Bye Grass
Did you know that instead of mowing your lawn twenty times a year, you can replace parts of it by a wildflower meadow or something else? You will only have to mow this twice a year, so ten times less work. A symphony of colours that is also extremely bee-friendly.
A relaxed state of mind
Our way of designing a low-maintenance garden involves a completely different mindset. A state of mind that makes us less critical in our lives, refusing to kill a ‘spontaneous’ flower to focus on its beauty instead.
A gardener is cheaper than you might think
Of course, it may be necessary to do a little work here and there, but that will be kept to an absolute minimum. If you are not entirely convinced, hiring a gardener twice a year to keep your garden in tip-top shape is less expensive than you might think.
Bringing a child into this world changes your life, it is a miracle, something beyond description.
Bringing a child into this world also involves many practical challenges. The best moments of my childhood were spent in the garden. It is very important to create a garden that will be your child’s personal play paradise, a place where memories will be created.
Réservé aux enfants, mais aussi aux parents!
Does that mean you need a swimming pond, tennis court, playground, trampoline…? Of course, all of this is possible, but it is not necessary. It has been proven many times that children are at their happiest when they can just be creative. They like nothing better than building camps, getting dirty, playing hide-and-seek or just horsing around so they sleep like a log at night.
A child-friendly garden means a garden design where a large part is dedicated to your child, but that does not mean that the parents are neglected, absolutely not. It is a garden where there’ s harmony between beautiful design and a patch of wilderness with a small sign: no adults allowed!
Le chien est le meilleur ami de l’homme. Un chien fera tout pour satisfaire au mieux son maître, c’est un honneur d’avoir un fier compagnon à quatre pattes à vos côtés. De nombreux propriétaires veulent tout faire pour que leur chien passe un bon moment.
Vous pourriez penser qu’un grand jardin est indispensable pour un chien, mais ce n’est pas vrai. Un chien est mieux dans un appartement si son maître le promène plusieurs fois par jour, joue avec lui et lui donne de l’attention, que s’il est laissé à lui-même dans un grand jardin idéal.
A good fence is a valuable investment
Of course, it is better to have a garden combined with the necessary attention! One of the most important things in a garden is a good fence! Dogs like to go out on their own and explore, but sometimes they can’t find their way back…
Many believe that a dog on the premises means bye bye garden, but it does not have to be that way. A carefully planned garden can combine a beautiful design with great comfort for the dog.
What personality does your dog have?
When creating a dog-friendly garden, it is important for the designer to understand what type of dog you have and what personality it has. For example, a Chihuahua has different needs than a Labrador. One of the most important things: the happier the dog is with the design, the more it will respect the beautiful flower beds.
Dogs need to run around!
It is important to design a walking area, as dogs like to move around. Instead of correcting the dog walking paths, it is better to keep the existing ones. It is recommended to cover the paths with mulch or wood chips to make them more comfortable.
Protect your plants
It is a good idea to create large borders around delicate plants and to plant them close together so that your dog does not get attracted to your favourite flowers! Hiding a small area of the walking path, no more than one metre wide, can be a good idea, as dogs like to have their own secret hiding place.
Some plants are toxic to dogs, for example Amaryllis, Caladium, Azalea… We take this into account in the design, although most dogs have good instincts and you usually don’t need to worry.
Sun & Shadow
Dogs also like to lie in the sun, so we create a little extra space in your sunbathing area. Shade is also appreciated on hot days. In other words, we take into account all possible wishes and needs for your dog, not forgetting his master, of course! The idea is that the garden is perfect for everyone! Even for the cat 😉
Permaculture garden design
Permaculture is short for permanent agriculture, a term coined by the Australian biologist Bill Mollisson and his assistant David Holmgren.
It is a science of creating an ecologically sustainable and economically stable environment. Permaculture is an alternative to industrial farming and gardens with perfect lawns that are treated with chemicals.
A perpetual motion, a cornucopia
One of the main goals of permaculture is to design and create a community of plants and trees that after a few years will lead to an ecosystem that is completely self-sufficient. The utopian dream is to just pick food and enjoy this natural beauty. Knowing that everything you do is with full respect for nature.
Just how small and ignorant humans are in comparison to nature.
If you look at a forest, for example one of the famous redwood forests in California, you will see trees 95 metres tall, some with a circumference of 34 metres and there are specimens that are estimated to be over 3200 years old. Compare this to the ‘modern’ human being who spends a fortune on working hours, fertilisers, water and pesticides to take care of an artificial lawn, an orchard, box trees or corn fields, all out-of-nature. Have we, humans, completely lost our minds?
Are humans superfluous?
People sometimes have a hard time accepting that they are superfluous in some areas, and in this example, less intelligent than nature. You could choose the laissez-faire method and be guaranteed a natural, sustainable wilderness in your garden in 10 years or so. But the best thing about being human is to be able to find a balance between our human needs and the respect of nature, and here we are, that’s permaculture!
This is Permaculture!
Some elements that can be found in permaculture design are the Herb Spiral, Keyhole Beds, Raised Beds, Hugelkultur (hill culture), the integration of natural lines and patterns, the use of mulch, wildflower meadows… Many people who are fascinated by permaculture continue to study it, take courses, read lots of books about it and even get addicted to it, it can become a true way of life. Children also love different Permaculture projects that you can share with them.
However, it can also be nice to have a Permaculture Design in your garden and just enjoy it without giving it too much thought.
A great deal of inspiration for the design comes from Masanobu Fukuoka, Sepp Holzer, Geoff Lawton, Toby Hemenway and many others.
An ecological swimming pond in your garden
Swimming in your own garden is the very definition of luxury, delight and pleasure.
You might think of a swimming pool, an inflatable one for the low-budget, a built-in one for the bigger budget, but is a swimming pool really the best option?
An angry pool owner destroys the swimming pool
The idea of a swimming pond arose when a pool owner was tired of having to clean the water every day, change the filters, add chlorine again, invest in a pool robot and so on. He simply dismantled the upper part of the pool and turned it into a swimming pond.
What is a swimming pond?
A swimming pond has all the advantages of a swimming pool without the inconveniences, which are numerous. A pool is actually an artificial environment that needs to be maintained by chlorination, filtration and hard work. It’s unpleasant to swim in because the chlorine makes your skin age and irritates your eyes. In a swimming pool you have to find the right balance of chemicals to prevent bacteria from settling in and you have to change the water every so often. Drinking pool water can be fatal for your pets as well as for thirsty birds. It is also unhealthy for your child, or yourself. Chlorine is carcinogenic.
A swimming pond is self-filtering
A swimming pond completely relies on nature to filter the water. You create an ecosystem that is fully self-sufficient. A swimming pond has two parts, one part is like a normal pool, the second part is the filter zone and that consists of lava rock which purifies the water through its many holes and pond plants that keep the water clean.
Swimming ponds are as crystal clear as a swimming pool
In contrast to classic ponds, ‘swimming ponds’ have very clear water and you can even see the bottom. Some swimming pond experts claim that the water is even drinkable, although we do not recommend this. A nice final touch is the installation of underwater lights. Nothing is more romantic than sitting with your loved one next to your illuminated swimming pond at night or enjoying a swim at night.
A private spa in your garden
A swimming pond can be used all year round, we even have the tradition of doing a New Year’s dip. The toughest among us try to outdo each other by swimming as many laps as possible in the freezing water. We have to say, there is a nice hot tub next to it in which we warm ourselves before and especially afterwards. If you really want to turn your garden or house into a spa, then the holy trinity is: 1) a hot tub, which is like a jacuzzi but made from wood, and without the bubbles. 2) a sauna and 3) a swimming pond.
Wildlife in your swimming pond
When you go for a swimming pond you get a free nature show. Beautiful dragonflies and butterflies flutter past, birds bathe, frogs sometimes sit in the non-swimming area, you bring nature in! You can also choose to add beautiful fish, but that is no must.
Creating a garden is an investment
Have you just become the proud owner of your own house? Or are you planning to build one? Buying a house is a big investment so many people wait a while before having their garden designed.
It is better to invest in your garden now than to wait for 10 years
We will prove that finally it is more profitable not to waste time! Why wait several decades to invest if you can already enjoy it in the next decade? Many people forget that their home, and especially their garden, is their own little paradise on earth. It is a place where you can completely relax after a long day at work, where you can enjoy a beautiful garden design and listen to the birds singing. Where your children can pick an apple and where you can have great barbecues with friends and family during the summer.
Investing in a garden project is the wisest decision you can make. The most expensive part of a new garden is the landscaping itself, so why not inviting your friends and family over for a weekend and getting the work done yourself? After all, nothing is more satisfying than planting a small fruit tree that will treat you to delicious fruit until old age, all without you having to do anything except pick it.
Creating your garden in several stages
Today, an increasing number of young people are choosing to have their gardens designed, for example when they build or renovate their house and then carry out the work in stages over several years. This is a very fascinating experience because the garden literally grows bigger every year.
Why having a garden that is not edible? There is nothing more satisfying than to get up in the morning, take a dew trip and pick some berries and fruit for breakfast. This experience is priceless for you and especially for your children.
All edibleIt is a delicious food source and you know that it is the freshest and healthiest food you can find. Did you know that it is possible to make everything, absolutely everything, in your garden edible? From leaves to trees to grasses to berries to fruit, the possibilities are infinite. To get an idea of the enormous range of edible plants, visit www.PFAF.org, Plants For A Future.
Annuals vs perennials
You can choose to have a low-maintenance edible garden or one that requires a little more effort. Garden lovers won’t mind spending hours with their hands in the soil. But if you know in advance that you only want to enjoy your garden, it is very important to have it designed for that purpose.
When you think of vegetables like tomatoes, pumpkins, leeks, carrots… these are annuals. Such plants only live for one year and have to be replanted every year. If you prefer relaxing, it is better to choose perennials, for example: asparagus, strawberries, fruit trees, berries…
you’ re a bit of an adventurer, you can try a wild food plot where annuals are sown or planted once.
The only restriction is that you cannot harvest everything. By doing so, seeds or tubers are left behind and a natural selection occurs. Each year, you can see plants coming back spontaneously and becoming increasingly adapted to your garden