How to design a sloping garden – 5 key points when planning a sloped site

You will find myriad methods to design a sloping garden that will take full advantage of an outdoor on the gradient. Not even close to presenting limitations, you should use inclines to your benefit like a sloping backyard offers fabulous layout and planting options that wouldn’t be easy to achieve on the flat site.

With variable levels, you may create distinct garden areas, each using their own purpose, ambiance and planting plan, in addition to a number of seating areas to sit and drink within the views below or over.

Finances are important when making any garden, but particularly so with sloping garden ideas, where if you do not plan things out carefully costs can escalate.


Plan the designs for any sloping garden to suit the lie from the land, and use natural topography of the backyard.

‘A sloping garden presents unique design possibilities to produce either drama or subtlety. Locating the route with the slope is equally as essential as the general effect,’ explains John Wyer, Chief executive officer and lead garden designer at Bowles & Wyer.

Incorporate pathways running across the slope, linking teams of steps or terraces. ‘This provides a wonderful and ever-altering outlook during your garden, in addition to multiple possibilities to obtain your nose within the flowers!’ adds John Wyer.


‘Don’t maintain a hurry to flatten the floor in designs for any sloping garden, as altering levels offers a lot potential,’ explains garden designer Helen Elks-Cruz .

‘If you’re fortunate enough to possess a site with gentle undulations, following natural contours or tweaking existing ones is a terrific add visual interest and fascinating walks round the garden. Simple grass banks may also be employed to retain sloping soil,’ Helen adds.

However, in tackling a high site you need to ask the help of the experts.

‘You will in the end require a structural engineer’s input, because there will always be of soil to retain. Subtle, discreet terracing may should be designed and incorporated by a skilled landscaper,’ explains garden designer Sara Jane Rothwell.

This is when a mixture of patio ideas and deck ideas could be labored to your design to produce the right layout.

‘It’s often a question of planning different levels in locations that are suitable for the place and facet of a garden,’ states states garden designer and author Ruth Chivers, and co-author of Designing Gardens on Slopes.

‘For example, creating an amount paved place to sit on is a vital, but regardless of whether you want this to stay in full sun at some point of day will affect where you choose to result in the terrace or patio.

‘Views from the inside your home to your garden are as essential as views from inside your garden and beyond it,’ she adds.


Instead of using classical terracing, use staircases to link quantity of a backyard to become feature themselves in designs for any sloping garden.

‘Think from the grand staircases and terraces in Italian renaissance gardens. Basically we might be unable to replicate that scale and grandeur within our gardens, we are able to take inspiration using their designs,’ states John Wyer.

You may make an announcement with sweeping teams of steps prior to a maximum level, possibly a sitting area, bench, or perhaps a bit of sculpture.

If you’re designing for any traditional space you might want to make use of a stone that blends with and it is complementary towards the house.

However for a contemporary undertake a conventional staircase, think creatively with regards to materials for the steps.

Consider the way a material that contrasts using the surrounding greenery, for example contemporary gray stone, could make much more of an effect, ‘with staggered step lengths creating interest,’ adds John.

Steps don’t have to be built from stone, but tend to also incorporate many other materials.

‘We designed this garden (above) with wide gravel and Corten Steel steps. Corten Steel is an extremely versatile material it’s strong and fairly simple to instal. Any joins is going to be hidden behind the rusty patina that will establish with time also it weathers naturally,’ explains Sara Jane Rothwell.

The colour from the Corten Steel also complements the nearby planting. Allowing plants in herbaceous borders to spill within the edges of steps and risers, helps you to soften the straight lines.

Exactly What Do I Actually Do Having A STEEP BANK Within My GARDEN?

Planting up an incline, although challenging, is a superb chance to experience with perspective,’ explains designer Ann-Marie Powell.

‘Tall vegetation is frequently grown at the rear of borders, but plant heights have to be considered in relationship to where you stand viewing the border from, while you shouldn’t block the border views.’

Successive sweeps of foliage and flowers can take shape on each other creating multiple perspectives in designs for any sloping garden. Plants of the identical height can look taller as the eye travels up an incline, allowing the illusion of layered planting.

‘Select the best plants that will deal with water elope, as rain naturally travels lower a gradient,’ adds Ann-Marie Powell.

On the sunny slope, consider plants that will deal with dry soil conditions, for example grasses, verbena, euphorbia, gaura, achillea yet others frequently considered gravel plants, or employed for developing a Mediterranean garden.

‘When planting, we’ll frequently make use of a small-ditch round the plant, that will collect water and thus allow plants a moisture sump to attract from.

‘Those plants which enjoy conditions with greater moisture levels could be grown at the end from the slope in which the gradient is less steep where there’s less possibility of soil and nutrients being washed away,’ Ann-Marie adds.