Why we don’t just design gardens – we help them live on

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Maintenance might be a dirty word to some landscapers, but at Abbotswood Garden Design we believe regular maintenance is what sets a great garden apart from a just-so one – which is why we offer our clients these little extras…

Long-term thinking

While many landscapers walk away from their gleaming designs once the blue print is blooming – Abbotswood take a much longer-term view. We understand that you might not have much time, or that a four-acre garden might be beyond your capabilities, and we continue to offer maintenance as standard after the landscaping has finished. This is because we understand that the very best gardens are created over time, with patience and with care. Instead of filing borders with flowers that will be over in one season, we choose from a wide palette of colours, shapes and seasons that will give long-term, year-round interest. And we ask ourselves: what will those shrubs look like in two, 10, 20-years time? Will that tree need trimming, and will that pond need perking up? Because things grow and change we’re there to grow with them, pruning at the right times, cutting lawns and making sure your garden looks as good, if not better, than when it was first planted.


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Acres of experience

Abbotswood Garden Design has been designing and maintaining gardens in and around Cambridge, Saffron Walden, Huntingdon and Newmarket for more than a decade. Because most of these gardens are large (some more than four acres) and belong to some of the region’s most prestigious homes and landmark buildings, we have learnt how to work with complex gardens and understand the intricacies of landscaping and plant care. We also have a passion for problem solving and love the challenge that those awkward spots bring!

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Local know-how

Relying purely on word of mouth from day one (some people call Abbotswood ‘Cambridge’s best kept secret’), we’ve built up a loyal following. We’ve also gained a deep-rooted local knowledge about what works and doesn’t work in the area. We understand the soil, climate, geography and topography of the region and therefore the plants and plans that work best.

Understanding your views

While some landscapers will throw all their efforts into the front garden, we take a wider view – your view in fact. You’re the one who will be looking out into your back and front garden every day, and we take this in to account in our landscaping and maintenance. Our fully collaborative approach to your design doesn’t end at the drawing board; it extends to the maintenance too. So, we won’t let overgrown trees impinge on your favourite vista, we understand that seating areas and patios need to be maintained to keep them functional, and that you don’t want to look out on compost heaps and utility areas. We consider what you want to get out of the garden and what the garden needs to do for you.

Expert plant knowledge

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As well as working in some of Britain’s greatest gardens, Abbotswood’s founder Rob Chew has gained RHS qualifications and is a graduate of the English Gardening School in London. As plantsmen, we bring a wealth of horticultural knowledge to projects: we know our biennials from our perennials, our ground covers from our grasses, and know that good plant husbandry is the key to a flourishing garden, whether that’s tying in climbers, dividing perennials, creating meadows, planting bulbs or clipping topiary. We do the skilful horticultural work, so you can just sit back and enjoy your garden.

A love for loam

We believe good gardens start with good soil. While some landscapers will simply add a layer of mulch on top to give that photogenic look, we know it goes much deeper. We lavish attention on your soil from day one, digging in leaf mould and compost to enrich and support the planting above ground. Give soil some love in those early days and the garden will give back for years.

Greener gardening

Gardening in harmony with nature and not against it is also important to us. Lavishing lawns in chemicals, spraying shrubs and eradiating pests will create imbalance in eco-system of your garden and while it might look pristine initially, you are more likely to get infestations and hard to tackle problems at a later date. Instead we know that by incorporating diversification in planting, encouraging beneficial pollinators, practicing crop rotation and ensuring good housekeeping, we can maintain a garden that is much more able to stand up to the rigours of climate change and other challenges.

Slick scheduling

We remain on top of the practicalities of garden maintenance with rigorous scheduling and time keeping. Just one of our gardens offers a myriad of jobs, but we are fully capable of handling multi faceted projects and getting to grips with seasonal tasks at the right time and in good time.

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