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Tuesday, April 8, 2014 - 16:37

Welcome to the first in our series of Colourlands blogs. This week think all things tourmaline and turquoise, patina and verdigris.

There is a plethora of colour spectrums that appear naturally in our gardens and landscapes and throughout 2014 we are exploring them here.

2014 trends in interior and fashion design promise a bold wave of strong colour choices. This will naturally inform many of our exterior selections... so this week let's soak up this palette that can translate as both highly contemporary and classically vintage.

Natural creation

This spectrum of colours is one that most of us respond to positively. Whether evoking the calm serenity of water, the protective qualities of gem stones or stimulating an attraction to vibrant pigmentation, it's a palette of colours that seems universally inspiring.

This palette of aqua and patina greens and blues seem inherently optimistic, possessing an ability to restore a sense of well being in all of us.

Other times they can echo a warm sense of nostalgia.

They stimulate creativity,

and inspire positivity.

Reminding us to appreciate the qualities of the aged

alongside embracing the possibilities of the new. 

Colourlands part I Sourcebook: Mykl Mabalay, Miikshka, Pinterest, ebay, Kerso blog, Halo Smith, Fauxology, New Orleans French Quarter door, Blue view art by Jami, The Chicken Chick, Martha Stewart, I heart it, Pantone Mind, Meadow boutique, HC Gardens, Horse Country living, The last foot print, Mindful spirits, Hugh heart, Macro village.

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Thursday, April 3, 2014 - 19:12

'Tis the season : April... Let's get started then with some Floral Couture via Alexander McQueen

Bring some outside in via HC Gardens style

To kick off the Spring Season here and to combat some of the pollution blanketing us here in Oxfordshire this week we are bringing you some of the best of all that blossoms and blooms.

This posting has an unashamedly pink theme, but it explores the spectrum. Everyday there is a little bit more joy to behold. Little lime green foliage in gardens and landscapes is popping up everywhere as leaves unfurl. Nature buds with little bombs of promise. Our worlds are all blossoming and blooming. It's Spring at last. So shall we go on a trip then?


Collecting from the cut flower garden

Claude Monet's house in Giverny, photographed here by KOS TAS. Now that's some front of house style!

Step this way

The pictures speak for themselves so we have very little to say this week as we let the blossoms & blooms do all the talking...

Vessels for display... for bringing some outside in

Hungry? Edible petals

 April is all about the new season so nurture every bud and morsel of nature that you can in your garden because it's all about to go... a good way

get your seed bombs from kabloom (click the link), more on why, how, who, when, where, what, coming up here very soon :) 

blOOm Sourcebook: Alexander McQueen, Hendy Curzon Gardens Ltd., Vogue, Paloma, houzz, Achadosdaliedaqui, Flickr, Pinterest, Keltainentalorannalla blogspot, Adorable life, Ginny Branch, Daily click, Mint Tree, Peter Lippmann, Etsy, Rebecca Plotnick, Fairy Tales are true, Indulgy, Colored Mondays, Events ambience, Incked, Butterfly bones.



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Wednesday, March 5, 2014 - 13:54

Let's get vertical and go to some dizzying heights

Vertical gardens and green walls have always been a beautiful and environmentally friendly means of adding life to surfaces, buildings and architecture. Then a few years ago it seemed that the popularity of ‘living walls’ was going to take over Britain with the use of them showcasing in Chelsea and Hampton Court for a fair few years in a row.

Soon a small conglomerate of companies seemed to monopolise the ‘systems’, driving costs up and making the whole concept of a 'living wall' very expensive and a bit generic. They soon seemed only to be affordable to corporate companies translating as part of the 'language' of those spaces and less appropriate to domestic gardens. The resistance to this, alongside the developments by designers in other countries has enabled a fresh wave of thinking about vertical gardens... so step this way...

So here we are championing this new generation of vertical gardens and gardeners, in hope that this post will illustrate there is a vertical garden to appeal to everyone – whatever your style and available space. Find vertical garden inspiration here in the form of the conventional, modern, modular, nature’s way with climbers and moss, innovation in architecture and just some plain old cracking ways to create your own vertical garden at home.

urban contemporary vertical garden

vintage country vertical garden

industrial town or country vertical garden

softscape city vertical garden

courtyard vertical New York garden

outside in vertical garden

nature's way vertical garden

big in Japan vertical garden

urban vertical landscape

retreat town or country vertical garden

city (Paris :)  vertical garden

country vertical garden

townhouse vertical garden

cotswolds vertical garden

modern vertical gardens

international vertical gardens

front of house vertical garden

outdoor room vertical garden

A dozen layers of concrete planters create a vertical garden on the facade of this house in Ho Chi Minh City by Vietnamese architect Vo Trong Nghia. 

The building is 20m deep but just 4m wide, typical of the narrow but long 'tube houses' common in Vietnam. Concrete planters span between the side walls to cover the front and back facades, and are spaced according to the height of the plants.

Automatic irrigation pipes fitted inside the planters allow for easy watering and maintenance.

Outside in : Sunlight pokes through the leaves of the plants to cast dappled shadows on the granite walls.

perfect pared-back style and proof that attention to detail matters. From design to creation and  construction then to living a life there. Selection of materials is integral to timeless success.


experiencing vertigo yet?

Pictured above is a garden by one of the the kings of vertical gardens Patrick Blanc. Blanc's work began with many private commissions of outdoor vertical gardens for clients seeking to create a rural element to their city views. As awareness of Blanc's talents gained momentum he was able to also pursue interior vertical garden projects. 

Above, Urban works by Jean Renaudie. His city projects 'embody an urban density, mixing several social levels, organising urban life on a multidude of levels and blur the limits between private and public areas whilst supplying every resident, on all storeys with a little piece of garden. '

Below, Brazilian designers Fernando and Humberto Campana and architects Super Limao Studio have covered the facade of a São Paulo furniture showroom with thousands of plant-filled vases.

House in Tokyo captured by Guen K

Design by Nature by Ian L. McHarg project by Adriana Barra

The Bangkok module green wall crate building system is made from stainless steel for easy construction. Hanging plant pots and drip irrigation are installed behind the felt. This system is inexpensive and convenient to construct. Architects Shma, Sansiri PCL, SdA Photograph Wison Tungthunya

  Architect Michele Bonon  Photographer Stefano Scata 

Architect Brad Zizmor 

Above : from the growing works of the UK's extrememly talented Anna Garforth... more on her in future 2014 blogs.

Below: our exterior studio inspirations, also more coming up on that in future 2014 blogs.

Kathrin Koschitzki

Vertical gardens : the future

A group of researchers led by Antonio Aguado, Ignacio Segura, and Sandra Manso at the Structural Technology Group of the Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya have developed a new multilayer concrete that is able to support plant life. Both a medium for growth and a construction material, the system allows for thermal regulation and CO2 sequestration.

Aesthetically pleasing plus the concrete has applications in air purification and CO2 reduction. It can absorb solar radiation, helping to regulate temperature inside the building. Forming what the team describes as a “living painting”, the ever-changing biological layer is an alternative to static or toxic paints. Without the need for supporting structures, vertical gardens made with the composite are simpler and cheaper to build or augment existing facades.

Lichen it!

imagine what we could do with this in the UK? Not just for new builds but those existing unsightly fascades and structures? Those crimes against design could become the future houses and buildings that mark a generation. Currently, the biological concrete is being tested at the UPC and the University of Ghent (Belgium). Hopefully soon we will be seeing many more buildings sprout gardens thanks to this new technology. In the mean-time, nature will always find a way...

Vertical gardens at home 

Here are some ways to spruce up some vertical areas and possibly save on space by making use of your vertical possibilities within your home and garden.  First up is some lovely espalier on a home. The type of tree or shrub selected is essential to get the right look and suitability to the hosting fascade.

Vertical cook's garden fashioned from an old wash board 

A little more carpentry involved but still a dawdle... living culinary wall in a cook's kitchen

Nice idea : DIY chalk board and vertical herb garden.

Off the shelf 

and outside... a bit of reclaimation vertical gardening

maximising every viable surface for some greenscaping

Upcycling vertical garden

outside in

nature's way vertical garden


This hybrid light and acoustical device was created by the German lighting designer Ingo Maurer for a client's dining room. Designed to both illuminate and soften the sound in the small but tall domed space…the end result, 'Biotope' ~ a 12 foot high hanging mass of  emerald green sponges that glow from within. A sound system, also hidden, can play music as well as insect noises or bird songs. Yes, it is artificial, but Maurer’s piece pushes boundaries and takes its inspiration from lush forests and nature itself resulting in an interior statement that feels organic and full of life.

Last year we talked about nature's influences over design and fashion in the Floral Couture blog and it seems that this trend prevails for Spring 2014. Vertical gardens adorned the SS14 catwalks and sets in the form of lush greenery and  technicolour blooms.

Floral Engineers and lighting designers shone very bright indeed with the likes of Eric Chauvin giving Dior in Paris rainbow vines (above), Architect Pernilla Ohrstedt's presenting Topshop's collection on a turfed runway and Thierry Dreyfus suspending trees over audiences for Versace in Milan.


Emma Hill's departing show for Mulberry in Unique's Regents Park show gave a firm nod to the quintessential English country garden with roses clambouring over arbours and trellis.

Land Art by Tim Walker

As predicted nature is creeping her way indoors from these fashion influences on to our interior schemes. Garden motifs, and floral & leaf patterns are inspiring interior design but with a definite trend towards complementing that with natural looking ways of bringing the outside in. These are in the form of cuttings from cut flower gardens, foraged hedgerow finds, vertical living gardens and so on.

In urban centres the exterior living walls have prevailed for a long time but indoors in the UK less so. Anthropologie's Regent Street store is getting in on the outside in trend in the Capital along with Josh Wood in Notting Hill, Atelier Beaute  both showcasing new living walls for 2014.

Patrick Blanc

Hendy Curzon Gardens

Secret Garden : Jimmy Choo

and then look what they did inside for the celebrations...

floral engineering gorgeousness!

So drawing this blog posting to a close we hope you feel a wee bit inclined to look around at your available spaces no matter where you reside. Can you enhance a mute or ugly space with some vertical gardening? Or can you possibly innovate because you are considering those vertical spaces and seeing them in a different way altogether?

nature nurture

and let's not forget the potential of lighting engineering combined with vertical gardens...

San Telmo Museum

if you want to go vertical this is not necessary

here's a more viable option with air plants

and /or this... just beautiful & simple

coming soon here for Spring : Land Art, Tulip Town, a lot more Floral Engineering (including our hero Thierry Boutemy pictured below)

and for now we are just anticipating Spring over on FB ...

the garden army troops are at the ready!

to take you to new heights

to make you take time to pause

and offer aid to assist and encourage you to get the most you can out of your garden, and love  it to the ultimate level that you can possibly reach.

The rest of the sources : Esculturas en equilibrio, Country Bistro Mexico City, Denzeen, Pinterest, Joseph Massie Creative, The Guardian, Indulgy, Vertigo imdb, Thomas Woltz, Petteri Nisunen, Arch Daily, Emporia, Fubiz, Bonny Fleming, Brightgreenus, Janne peters, Miromar Design, Design Sponge.

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The lovely bones

Friday, February 7, 2014 - 11:43

Hendy Curzon Gardens Ltd.

Wabi Sabi Design

David Winston

This February we are celebrating the lovely bones of Winter gardens when all is toned down to its natural pared-back beauty. Landscapes and gardens take on new forms in Winter. The light that is cast and the muted palettes can be appreciated alongside the structures and plants that we place or occur naturally in landscapes.

Winter Gardens Hendy Curzon

 If you have followed our projects portfolio and this blog over the years you will know that we always welcome and cherish these colder months when the simpler stages of outside give us all a period of respite - after the glory of Autumn and just before the explosion of Spring in the gardens & landscapes that we create.

In Winter the little details can shine brightest and the natural look of materials, bare tree structures, lighting and thoughtful design of evergreens, render Winter gardens and landscapes in to a period of wonder and enchantment... especially if they are cast in snow or frosts. Take a look and see...

Camil Tulcan, Visual Therapy

Nagano House TNA Architects

Marianne Boesky

- The lovely Winter bones -

- Winter luxe -

- Bringing a little outside in -

-Winter whites -

- Winter Front of House -

-Winter pause -

- Winter Country -

- Humble Winter beauty -

- Winter thaw -

- Winter Wildlife Hotel -

Pared-back Winter homes & gardens

Hawthorn Tompkin's phased extentsion campus

'The Forest's floor Courtyard' in February by Hendy Curzon Gardens

Looking good in February : on our nursery table - various Ferns and Dogwoods.

Here go in the new lovely bones to this historical front of house garden project in a Cotswolds village. Our design and build sympathetically combines restoration and reclaimation with modern techniques and structural planting... and the rest of this project? Wait until Spring for the first reveal. We aim to stop traffic.

The lovely bones Source book : hendy curzon gardens ltd.,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

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Where the wild things are

Saturday, January 18, 2014 - 11:16

Greetings and welcome to the first blog of 2014 and straight from our new studio & depot. Belated Happy New Year!

There is a lot on the horizon for 2014. After that initial downer last week of seeing dismembered Christmas trees stuffed in to wheely bins and petrified on roadsides, we were cheered by Linton's Zoo appeal for those unwanted trees for their lions and tigers to play with. If you live locally to the Zoo (Cambridge) and still have a straggler kicking around trees can be dropped off at the front gates of the zoo. Sweet!

Our own resident lion chowing down on Pussy Willow... naughty

This month we are feeling the pull of all things wild so are bringing you a blog connecting with nature and those wild ones (including humans). See what is finding its way on to our mood boards, influencing us and making us smile so far this year. It should be pretty obvious by now that we collectively love nature and animals so this post celebrates those souls and creatures that have either surprised or moved us of late. Think of this blog as our cabinet of curiosities... with a nod to those things that you won't find unless you really look. 

Shall we begin then?


let's take a walk on the wildside...

Actress Tippi Hedren, best-known for her role in Hitchcock’s The Birds, and as the mother of actress Melanie Griffith, once shared her home with lions in California, photographed here by LIFE magazine during the early 1970s. (Griffiths pictured in the pool and in bed with a lion below!)

In 1969, Tippi was filming a movie in Africa and visited an abandoned house in Mozambique occupied by 30 lions and their cubs. The time she spent there with the lions changed Hedren’s life forever and inspired her and her husband to make a movie about what they had seen.

So what did they do? They started their own pride of 50 homegrown lions, acquiring them one by one. Well of course they did...


As preparations for the film progressed, neighbors began to complain about the family’s ‘pets’ and  'the' authorities cracked down. The family packed up their things (including cats) and moved to the remote Soledad Canyon to live on the reserve with their lions, where they continued the on-and-off filming of Roar. For a project that cost over $17.5 million, the film only grossed about $2million in the end.

Tippi shocked a lot of people when she admitted that she absolutely made sure the cats slept with her and her children, believing that nothing was more important than day-and-night communication. Uh... that's no kitten Tippi...

During production of Roar Melanie Griffiths, 19 years old at the time, was attacked by a lioness and needed 50 stitches to her face and then the director of photography was scalped. Thankfully Tippi has changed her views on living with lions but has not deterred from being their ambassador. In 1983, she founded the Shambala Preserve, a fully functioning animal sanctuary to protect exotic animals who have suffered from gross mistreatment and neglect.

is there anyone home?

One man's trash is another man's treasure. So true! The little brown bottle booth in our studio, collated from much digging in and around the Cotswolds.

- HOME time -

Nestle in, January can be bleak but this is all looking quite cosy...

Nice log stacking

A stack of firewood House by Piet Hein Eek for Hans Liberg

The natural earthy look. Bringing outside in with style.

For inside out and outside in what better than from the porch. Ultra modern or a little more countryfied....

Beaming! Sheer design mastery, House by architect Ray Kappe, photographed by Joao Canziani

The ultimate inside out feel, Jodlowa House by PCKO Architects, Poland

Now that looks like the place to be. Or if you really want to retreat this Winter...

Try a stay in The Igloo Village, Hotel Kakslauttanen, Lapland... no less.


Mesmerizing creatures in their landscapes.

- timeless TEXTURE -

At our new digs we have been planting many trees, including our signature Paper Birches. We plant them for our clients because we believe that they are the stars of gardens and landscapes in Winter. Also gorgeous for those textural bark shavings and peelings for Winter displays indoors. Or great for starting fires if you are caught out in the wild... according to Ray Mears!

Textural imagery by Tim Booth

On the wild and weird side - the image above is from the anthropomorphic photographic series by Portland based Etsy shop, Grand Ole Bestiary. What are your reactions to these?... mainly we find them a bit creepy but yet, somehow they have compelled us to look at them again and again! With the interiors trend toward 'display', faux taxidermy, apothecary and cabinets of curiosities these Victorianesque anthropomorphic portraits are gaining in popularity. So let's then introduce you to the Squirrelton Twins...


And getting even weirder... The famous ballet dancer Anna Pavlova (pictured at her home in London, Ivy House) who created The Dying Swan role that later influenced Swan Lake, cohabitated happily and lovingly with swans... now that is truly terrifying!

How do you do?

Another 'how do they make you feel?' question when we present this series to you. Created by Madris based industrial photographer Miguel Vallinas, the 'Second Skins' series definitely evokes a reaction. We have been toying with these for a while... what we like is that they do command the 'Marmite question'.

Love them or loathe them we admire this anthropomorphic photographic series because Vallinas is experimenting with the notion that we project our preconceptions onto people based on their appearance. He in turn confesses that he uses his preconceptions of personality to imagine a personality for each animal, that is then expressed through their outfit. This second part of a Vallinas series is all about stereotyping, (the first featured several portraits of people in their work clothes) aiming to investigate the internal aspects of human preconception.




The normally flamboyant flamingo practices some restraint here in pared down attire. Last in this corner of curiosities is the most shocking yet from the Grand Ole Bestiary...

Hello Kitty!

display : gathered Birch twigs @ our floral engineering area


- land ART & LIGHT -

Land Artists and couple Christo & Jeanne Claude create vast land pieces. Pictured here is The Running Fence in Sonoma & Marin Counties, California, live from 1972 – 1976.

When asked how they define themselves and work this was their response:

 J:Labels are important mostly for bottles of wine—but if you need a label, environmental artist is OK. We work in urban and rural environments. Still, the media continues to call us wrapping artists.

C:We borrow space and create gentle disturbances for a while. We inherit everything that is inherent in the space to become part of the work of art. All our projects are like fabulous expeditions. The story of each project is unique. Our projects have no precedent.

J: the hardest part of each project is to obtain the permits. Afterward, it's pleasure.

Over the River, project for Arkansas River, state of Colardo is currently postponed. More on these mavericks in our upcoming Land Art Blog.

Chairs by Doris Salcedo, Istanbul. 1,150 chairs : Urban Land Art installation. Respect!

Land Art Mid Pennines. Fairhaven Bubbles by Steve Messam, photographed by Lee Pilkington. Masterful!

Climbing Wall for Illoiha Omotesando fitness club in Tokyo by Nendo. Genius!

Forgotten Songs Urban Land Art installation by Michael Thomas Hill. Brilliance!



Lake Chandelier Akerselva Elvelangs Festival

Street Chandelier Urban Land Art installation by Werner Reiterer

Ball of Light by Denis Smith  / more on him coming up in our Land Art Blog : both Town & Country

Mirror House by Autumn De Wilde for Cadillac 2015 Escalade reveal

upside down mushroom ROOM by Carsten Holler, Tate Modern

Porcelain Fungi by Danny Beath


Sometimes style is effortless. This is all scavenged finds from our nursery - a fallen Birch branch, Hellebores and a specimen fern leaf displayed here. We can't encourage you enough to bring some outside in. Nature gives us gifts all year round. We will keep showing you our take on what, when & how throughout 2014. And then it's yours for the picking.



Tippi Degré is a real girl. The animals you see in these photos with her were not in any way tamed or trained by humans. Nothing is 'photoshopped'. Born in 1990 to French wild life photographer parents, Alain Degré and Sylvie Robert, Tippi had the kind of childhood that we only hear about in legends. She was named after the actress Tippi Hedren.

This Ostrich, nicknamed Linda, was apparently so afraid of hurting the small child that Tippi’s parents could rarely  capture a photo of them riding together.

One of her closest friends was Abu, the 28 year old African elephant pictured earlier. Tippi’s mother remembers, ”She had no fear. She did not realise she was not the same size as Abu."

Growing up in Africa, Tippi was living amongst the native tribespeople of Namibia. It was these tribesmen who took Tippi under their wing and taught her how to survive in the wild.

Tippi is now 23 years old and it appears in her adulthood, Tippi has shied away from a life as a potential celebrity. Very little news of her life today is available. What a pure and inspirational soul... we feel compelled to name the next resident animal after her. We'll let you know.

It’s astounding to us to learn that 22-year-old Hungarian photographer Noell S Oszvald only picked up a camera a year ago. So far she has shared about 20 of her images. (The Elephant & Zebra in the City earlier in this post are one of these). Oszvald says : “I don’t want to tell people what to see in my images. This is the reason why I never really write any descriptions other than titles. It shows what I wish to express but everyone is free to figure out what the picture says to them. It’s very interesting to read so many different thoughts about the same piece of work. " 

Pictured above is Prejudice


What came first? sculpture by Brighton based artist Kyle Bean. We featured his hotel receipts Lion sculpture on the 'Blown away' Blog last year.

Now that's it from us. Loads more Land & Garden Art & Sculpture coming up in the next few weeks. We have some cracking stuff to share.

Dog bespoke sculpture in our studio by artist Dominic Gubb for HC Gardens

The Where the Wild things are Source Book :,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

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