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Category Winner


Landscape Ivanhoe House


MMV Design

Maria MacVeigh & Bernard Hickey



Architectural Design

Structures and Spaces


Maria MacVeigh and Bernard Hickey – (Lead Designers): Ana Lariño (Architect) Charlie O’Leary (Pavilion Soft Landscape), Jack Hedigan & team (Pavilion Soft Landscape) Christy Murray & Sons (Ace Tree specialists), Ivan McCarthy (Site Foreman KPH) Patrick Kerr (Shadowlight), Martin Murphy (Engineer) Sean Cooney (Engineer), Jim Scannell (QS), Packo Maguire (Project Manager). Barbara Corsico (Photographer)

Design Challenge and Design Ideas

The site of the project is a 1.7 acre garden of a former ecclesiastical building which was undergoing a substantially refurbishment and extension. The original garden had a wealth of mature planting with a vegetable garden, soft fruit garden and orchard to the rear. Clear value judgment was required to decide what would be retained and what would go.
Apart from rational decision making, quiet contemplation of the site was also required in order to understand the ‘’spirit of the place’’ and discover the full potential of the site.
The design concept: the geometry of the hard landscape is counterbalanced with the compositions of the soft planting, the landscape perspectives and the focal points of the planters and trees.

How the brief was fulfilled

The entrance to the site faces north, the entrance to the house is on the east elevation, the connection to the garden is secluded by a row of beech trees and a series of paths that lead to the terrace area.
The paths are formed in slate stone plank paving. A storage wall on the east side of the site acts as an enclosure for the hard landscape scheme and defines the space of the terraces and the planters, it also acts as a backdrop for three multi-stem Hornbeam trees. The layout of the garden and the planting is also designed as seen from the interior. In the kitchen Courtyard a row of pleached Holly trees are planted to further screen the views of the neighbouring properties.
The idea to re-use as many trees and plants as possible meant a large part of the planting was removed off site, root balled and planted again within the scheme. This intervention facilitated access and construction, protected the planting and allowed the tree surgeons to overhaul the major trees and prepare the ground for the final planting. Among the plants and trees which were re-used were Japanese Maples, Fastigiate Yews, Apple and Plum trees, the various components of the soft fruit garden and the prized asparagus crowns.
Once the main building was refurbished and the extension was built re-planting started. The crisp geometry of the paved areas and planters is softened with the Japanese Maples and the compositions of soft domes, hedges and multi stem trees throughout the front and rear garden. The geometry of the Yew hedge acts as a counterbalance to the strength of the building; it also establishes the beginning of the mature existing garden. Together with our client we considered the location of all the plants and trees, moving and doctoring as required, from the smallest shrub to the tallest tree.
The garden has a series of concealed pathways which lead to the raised terraces, the pedestrian gate to the side of the entrance, and various service areas. These hidden journeys reveal the scale of the garden in all its essence. During the project a well was discovered on site. This well is now used for supplying water to the entire project.

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