The best garden designers can transform any outdoor space into an opulent oasis of color, form, and function. The work requires the ability to visualize what the finished product will look like, but it also entails creating detailed blueprints, sourcing plant materials and quantities, overseeing the construction process, and making sure the details of the landscaping match the style of the house and architectural surroundings. The top landscape design firms work with a wide range of clients and projects, but they share the same core principles: meticulous craftsmanship, a zeal for excellence, and a respect for sustainability.
Michael Bernier is a California native who believes that great garden design doesn’t try to outdo the house; instead, it should be a harmonious extension of it. He works with a wide range of materials and designs, but his specialty is in the use of water-wise, drought-tolerant plants. On his website, he writes that “great landscapes are balanced, not dominated by one particular element or another, and all elements must contribute to the overall effect.”
He is best known for his masterful yew and boxwood topiary, which creates year-round interest in any garden. His signature style is a combination of the precision of Oriental gardens and the classical lines of French formal gardens. He uses his knowledge of horticulture and geometry to create spaces that are both bold and elegant.
Pip Morrison is a highly respected best garden designers who specializes in working with historic sites and landscapes. Her most recent project was the redesign of the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace, where a new statue of Diana, Princess of Wales was unveiled in 2021. Her eponymous firm is based in Oxfordshire, but she has worked on private gardens across the UK and Europe.
Jinny Blom pivoted to garden design after a career as a psychotherapist, but her talents have proven invaluable in creating beautiful, botanically-rich gardens. Her firm works on large country gardens, and she has won multiple awards at the Chelsea Flower Show. Her designs feature a mix of styles, from formal to informal, but they always reflect the spirit of the site.
The London-based studio of Gavin McWilliam and Andrew Wilson specializes in creating contemporary gardens with a traditional feel. The team has won numerous awards since their founding in 2010, and their gardens are often featured in leading magazines and books. Their projects are a mix of contemporary and traditional, with crisply detailed construction and soft plantings in muted colors that blend seamlessly with their architectural surroundings. They have a reputation for designing bespoke landscapes that are a true reflection of the client, and their attention to detail shows in each finished project.