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Garden and Landscape Design by Laara Copley-Smith


My clients are individual, diverse and all have specific requirements. My intention is to work `with` my clients, working towards the `Vision of the garden` Or to resolve elements and issues related to their exterior spaces.

Client requirements and focus vary greatly, ranging from a consultation to a complete design and project management. And everything in-between, such as: plant design or lighting design/ installation, timber and metal work design/installation. Developing a specific area in the garden, maintenance or renovation works.

This diversity allows me to grow and develop as a professional Garden Designer, enabling me to learn new skills and add knowledge to my work.
The testimonials are written by clients who are all extremely different in themselves as are their `garden` aspirations.

Project: Barn New Build Within A Conservation Area:

 `During a visit to Sandown Park Homebuilding & Renovation Show for general updates we spotted Laara`s stand where we were impressed                  with her designs. We spoke with Laara concerning our new home building project with the curtilage of a listed property which was a complete              blank canvas. Laara made 3 site visits during a thorough design process with a following presentation of a master plan, planting design and                specifications as required. The designs and specifications have also successfully be utilised for landscape planning compliance which                        requested a full schedule of works both hard and soft landscaping.

 We Have been impressed with Laara`s professionalism and approachability and look forward to the completed project`

Derek Whitely, Rural Traditional Barn overlooking pasture land



Project: A Contemporary Newbuild On A Woodland Site

"Laara has made an invaluable contribution to the landscape design for our new house. We met Laara at the Homebuilding and Renovation Show which gave us an opportunity to see some of her previous work.

After a site visit Laara came up with some imaginative concepts for landscaping, planting and lighting for what is a unique, contemporary house build. She immediately understood the challenges we faced with the wooded site with little existing structure and northerly aspect.

Her enthusiasm is contagious and she had some great ideas on how to integrate the garden with the new house. We were really pleased with the design Laara produced for us and we look forward to working with her in the future as the project progresses."

P. Harper
Woodland setting which completely frames the site in a semi-rural position.

 Project: St.Georges Hill, Weybridge, Surrey.

A Large garden which frames a substantial, classical and elegant newly constructed property. The client commissioned: Concept designs, Out-line design, Lighting design and Planting design.

"Laara was great at taking a blank piece of paper and working with us dilegently to create the end product and design most suitable for us and what we wanted to achieve.

She is very creative and knowledgable as well as being passionate at what she does.

I would highly recommend her for landscaping design and concepts.

Trevor Pothecary, Chairman,  RPS Capital Partners Plc

 Project: Rural Country Garden, Hatchlands, Surrey.

" After extensive renovation work on our property which was completed in September 2010, what was left of the garden resembled a mud pit. The builders, their materials and diggers had left the area almost completely bereft of greenery.

We were particularly impressed by the very detailed Landscape Design that resulted and the ‘mood boards’ that Laara produced, complete with colour pictures of the plants and flowers included within the design.

Once a timescale and budgets were finalised, the team set about transforming our garden. We were impressed with the timeliness and efficiency with which the planting and landscaping was executed. We were communicated with at every stage of the planting so that we knew exactly what to expect each day. All the work was completed to schedule and within budget. The landscaping team were at all times courteous and hard-working.

Our garden is now a tranquil and beautiful place which we enjoy daily. Since the onset of the warmer weather, we have now been able to appreciate fully the scope of colours, shapes and plant types that Laara has chosen for us. We are thrilled with the result and have received many compliments several times over on how lovely and welcoming the garden is and how much it enhances the property as a whole.

I have no hesitation in recommending Laara and the recommended contractors and thank them for thier work, which is truly outstanding!"

Mrs.Paul, Hatch lands, East Clandon, Surrey

 Project: Award Winning Regal Homes.

Three properties located in St.Johns Wood and Hampstead. Garden design works were admitted to planning applications and conservation.

“Laara worked with Regal Homes and a team of other professionals to create bespoke gardens on a number of London properties. A talented and creative garden designer who produced design which complimented the interior designs. Innovative with attention to detail and the ability to work in a team. We will certainly be working with Laara on future projects.”

Paul Eden, CEO Regal Homes

Project: Private, London family garden spanning over three levels.

Laara is amazing, very creative, very intuitive about what the client really wants, even if the client hardly knows. Knowledgeable about plants with a fine aesthetic sense, determined to get every detail right – from the texture of the stone to the positioning and setting out of the plants during planting. She gets out in the mud and handles workmen really well. Laara is delightful and an unusual woman.

Kate Bucknell, Novelist, Nottinghill Gate, London.

 Project: Private, Residential New Build, Oakham, Surrey.

"Laara was a great asset to our project; her advice was sound, practical and inexpensive when compared with other landscape designers I have engaged in the past.

She was very hands on and apart from her obvious flair in the choice of plants she and her team executed the planting to a high standard and I often I saw her with secateurs and plant clippers in hand."

Philip Clarke, FRICS, Managing Director

 Project: Courtyard Garden, London.

Out-line Design of the hard and soft landscaping ,Water Feature Design , including site supervision and management.

Conceptualized as simple, with clean-lines and geometric shapes.  Integrating natural stone paving, rendered walling, lighting and a brushed stainless steel water piece. Planting softly with an essence of lush and richness.

“I spent a year renovating a house in Notting Hill, and asked Laara to do the garden. Laara was efficient, punctual, knowledgeable, creative and resourceful. She outshone all the other professionals and contributors to the project”

Mr. Scott, London

 Project: Creative Consultancy for a London property under-development.

"We wanted to say thank you for your `Creative Consultancy` which was invaluable. It gave us a really clear direction for the garden and was so detailed that we feel really confident we can translate the vision into reality. The materials you'd prepared in advance were really useful, visuals of fencing, planting, stone samples etc you were able to translate all of our magazine clippings and favourite websites into a personalised plan for our garden that really reflected our tastes.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          We're both excited to start working on the garden and will keep you updated on progress!"

Mr & Mrs Hale, London

 Project: An in-depth Enviromental Report.

An in-depth report covering Environmental, Tree and Plant care issues, and an Imposing construction adjacent to a residential community.

“Laara helped us at a difficult time in a situation which would not have been a normal brief. We are tremendously grateful to her for supporting us and the knowledge which she bought to this unique landscaping problem. Laara submitted a written report on our behalf which highlighted the unsuitability of a project adjacent to our house, we our confident that this was crucial in the final decision not to go ahead with the project. Laara also bought a much needed optimism and good humour to the situation.”

Twickenham, Surrey

 Project: Rural, Traditional Cottage Garden & addtional aquired paddock to be integrated as garden.

“Laara provided the design for my garden when I first bought the house, showing me the potential for transforming it from a neglected and unloved, overgrown paddock to a place of beauty and tranquility which is now much loved and coveted by all who visit it.”

Susan Halsam, Cheshire

 Projects: Crown Topiary.

“We have supplied laara for the last 10 years with topiary. She is a designer who demands high quality plants and always sources the best possible for her clients.

We have had the opportunity to work in a number of Laara’s gardens and are always impressed with the individuality and creativity she manages to capture by use of plants and other medium. Having that rare ability to conceptualise where and how to place plants and structure. We would not hesitate to recommend Laara as a garden designer and project manager.”

Anita Southwell and Wendy Hammond, Directors Crown Topiary


 Project: Planting Design for a large communal garden, London.

Oakfield Court Residents Association in Crouch End, north London recently undertook a replanting project of the large communal gardens surrounding our 1930s apartment buildings.

“Working together with Laara we were able to negotiate a plan suitable for the scale of the grounds, the limited budget available and the need to work with a committee of residents and the managing agents of the property. This is by no means a straightforward task but Laara has undertaken it with professionalism, flexibility, understanding and the sense of humour needed. ”

“Laara has produced a plan for our gardens that reflects the needs and desires of a wide range of tastes but has also been able to guide us in a clear direction. We have benefited from her direct contact with nurseries to save on the considerable cost of plants needed to fill such a large space. We are presently working with our managing agents who act as ultimate overseers of the project but look forward to starting the project proper soon and with Laara’s help seeing some long cherished hopes and garden dreams fulfilled."

Amanda Carrara, Co-chair, Oakfield Court Residents Association

 Project: Large Coombe Hill Estate Garden, Surrey.

Plant Design, incorporating a lighting design, irrigation system and renovation of an existing water feature. Including Project management and site supervision.

“Laara completely transformed our Large and mature triangular shaped rear garden with a beautiful sympathetic design. Her creative ideas from planning through to planting has given us a garden to enjoy for many years to come. We're thrilled and delighted with the result of the transformation and would have no hesitation in recommending her to our friends.”

Mr&Mrs Bloxham, Kingston upon Thames

 Projects: Windsmere Stone and Granite.

“Windsmere stone & granite are delighted to add our testimonial to Laara`s web site .We have been involved with Laara Copley-Smith for some 11 years , her knowledge and attention to detail is remarkable .All the jobs we have been involved in have run smoothly and on time , with the finished jobs being testament in their own right.”

Steve Johnstone, Managing Director Windsmere Stone & Granite.




 Project: Project management and site supervision, London. Continuing with the Design for a Large, Rural property & site presently under sensative renovation & rebuild.

Renovation of an existing rear garden and re-design of the front garden , incorporating planting design, lighting design, bespoke carpentry works.

“Laara and her team have provided us with a beautiful garden, with a splendid array of colours, which feature at different times, in different places throughout the year. We have limited time to spend on looking after the garden, and Laara has created an infrastructure which ensures as simple maintenance as possible. We have been impressed by the professionalism of Laara's team, and her ability to find reliable contractors – she herself is a highly-responsible project manager, and we have been very satisfied by her results. ”

Mr.Strachan, Director, Kensington




 Project: Re-design of the rear garden, including planting plan and lighting design.

“Following detailed discussion and provocative thinking about our objectives, aspirations and preferences, Laara produced the most detailed proposals for a complete re-arrangement of our garden involving both hard and soft landscaping. These were beautifully presented with the most detailed and precise drawings with colour where appropriate.

These reflected perfectly the brief which we had evolved with her and bore testimony to her huge knowledge of both hard landscaping materials and also shrubs, trees and plants of all descriptions. She readily introduced contractors and suppliers of the highest quality for the execution of the work, the first stage of which has now been completed. We are extremely pleased with the result.

We consider ourselves fortunate indeed to have been introduced to Laara Copley-Smith and have no hesitation in recommending her to future clients . ”

Mr&Mrs Stephens, Surrey




 Project: Private Residential, Out-Line Design.

"Laara has been one of the people who has been inspirational in my life. Her designs are beautiful and individual.  An extremely talented lady.  I would always recommend her in the future as I have in the past."

Mrs.Godliman, Alexander Technique & Colour Therapist, London

 Project: Re-design , incorporating natural materials, water and planting.

“Laara designed our garden in Ealing some years ago. It is a small, but well used and appreciated space. I have been interested in Japanese art and culture for many years and wanted to incorporate some elements of Japanese gardens into our scheme. Laara achieved this within the confines of some existing features by the use of small beach pebbles, bamboo and a gentle water feature. She produced a number of detailed design drawings at the start of the project to allow us to see the possibilities and input a few changes. We were very pleased with the final effect and have spent many happy hours there.

She has an easy going but professional manner and attends carefully to your particular needs yet gently improves on them. She has a keen sense of design and a great sense of space, which was important in our small garden.

I think of her gardens as works of art that use natural materials in their creation.”

Alan.S, Professional Artist, London