Marian Boswall Landscape Architects is a leading award-winning landscape design practice with an outstanding reputation for creating beautiful gardens while also encouraging biodiversity and conserving habitats. Established in 2004 and based in Kent, Marian Boswall combines horticultural, visual design and project management expertise on projects now ranging from large trusts and estates open to the public, to park land developments and smaller private gardens. We love how each landscape reflects the rich history of the people and the place connecting past, present and future, so to find out more we recently caught up with Marian…
You established the company in 2004, can you tell us a little about yourself before then and what inspired you to pursue a career in landscape architecture?
‘I enjoyed creative and ambitious careers before as an interiors buyer and a management consultant. I retrained to do something beautiful and also meaningful. I wanted to put back something into the way we look after land.’
What would you say inspires you most when it comes to a new design?
‘Listening to what the land and the client need.’
What are the beginning stages of a new project?
‘I go to visit the site and the people, to understand the clients and to connect with the site and the land. Listening is central to everything we do.’
You offer contractor coordination and regular build inspections throughout each project, why is this important?
‘The devil is in the detail! We like to stay with the project to guide the aesthetics and the detail right through to completion. We find that clients and contractors really appreciate this help, and we are often able to save money on the way as well. We also return to a project after it has been built, to offer advice on any planting that has not thrived, and to guide the site in to elegant maturity.’
Do you have any advice for anyone who is looking to re-design their outdoor space? And what sort of things should they think about prior to engaging a Landscape architect?
‘Think about what makes you happy. How will the outdoor space serve you and improve your environment? Find someone who resonates with you and your values. Will they be really listening to you and your site or will they just be installing a look that they have perfected elsewhere for someone else? Are they going to add value to your outdoor space and joy to your life?’
You have created some truly incredible landscapes, what has been your favourite project so far and why?
‘It’s impossible to pick just one! Recent ones I love include the one that won the Sussex Heritage Trust Award, which is a vibrant contemporary garden with lots of sculpture. Also, Reighton Wood which won the SGD Grand Award, combining bold planting and a gentle sustainable message.’
You use natural materials in your projects and create biodiversity to conserve habitats, why would you say this is so important?
‘I like to think that in 100 years’ time if all the humans disappeared our gardens would melt back into the land. We use materials which come from the land and are part of it, reflecting our very small place in the natural world. Habitat conservation and creation is vital for the continued existence of the wildlife we love and that we depend upon for our own existence.’
Do you have any new exciting projects on the horizon this year? (Please feel free to mention anything that you have got coming up that you want us to highlight e.g events)
‘The Blackthorn Trust Healing garden launches in September, with some exciting media coverage coming as well, this is a really important project that my studio has been working on pro bono for the last two years and we are really proud to be a part of. We hope to have planning shortly and start to build the new Arts Centre and performance gardens at Bridgepoint Rye which will make a great difference to this wonderful historic town. We are planting the new biodynamic gardens at Tillingham Winery soon, which will open in September, the winery is already open!
And we have several other wonderful private projects on the go, ranging from an estate in East Sussex to a boutique hotel in Oman.’
To see Marian Boswall Landscape Architects full portfolio or to make an enquiry visit the website here.
Images, Marian Boswall, Jason Ingram