Some gardens by the sea

Sometimes we make gardens right by the sea. These need special plants that will cope with the surroundings: it can be nice and mild but there can also be dry salty winds, especially in late winter and spring when east winds are very damaging Here are some examples of gardens we have designed and planted right by the sea.

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Brittas Bay, Co Wicklow. Only a minute's stroll from the sea, this garden was a blank slate with not a plant in sight when the garden was planted: the photos were taken seven years after planting. Some of the successful plants include Chionochloa flavicans, Rosa rugose 'Passion', Pseudopanax ferox, Cistus, Hoheria, Pittosporum.

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Monkstown, Co Dublin. Two years after planting: a small front garden on the seafront. Allium, Nepeta, Libertia, Geranium and roses are the main plants in bloom in these photos.

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Dalkey, Co Dublin. A very difficult site as this garden is in fact a roof, with only a few inches of soil. We replicated a 'beach' with pebbles and shells over soil, into which plants such as Eryngium, Agapanthus, Armeria, Euphorbia, Scabios and Anthemis were allowed to naturalise.

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Dalkey, Co Dublin. Three floors above ground level, overlooking Dalkey Island. This is one of three roof gardens on a house that slopes down to the sea. This garden, off the living room, has a copper-lined pond and waterfall, brick paving and walls and some tough plants. Photo taken just after planting.