Landscape design and planting

Muddy Boots offers a complete landscape design service – from the initial site survey, ideas and concepts for discussion, through to a full garden build specification for contractors and planting plans. I work alongside skilled local landscape contractors to bring the design to reality.

Prices for an initial survey and design concept typically start at £1500

Here’s how the process works…

Initial consultation/brief

I discuss what you want from your garden based on a written brief – how you use the garden, what changes you would like to make, how you want your garden to make you feel, the atmosphere you would like to create, your personal likes and dislikes, styles that you prefer…


My quote incorporates the three initial stages of the design process – Design, Specification, and Planting Plans. Where a project is likely to be built in phases over time it is often more cost-effective for the client to commission an initial design concept, and then ask me to develop the design detail, with specifications and planting plans for certain areas at a later date. I tailor each quote to the Client’s individual needs.


On agreement to proceed with the quote, I will:

  • review the client brief in full to checking our understanding
  • conduct a full site survey measuring all aspects of the site including dimensions and boundaries, existing house and garden features, and the surrounding environment. Soil samples will be taken and analysed to ensure planting recommendations reflect your soil conditions. On large or complex sites I will recommend a land surveyor does this.
  • draw up the site survey into a 2D scale plan to form the basis of the new design
  • produce initial design concepts and layouts based on your brief, which will then be presented for further discussion with you, along with images to give you a visual impression of planting and design ideas. The images may take the form of a mood board, sketches or paintings, depending on the brief.


Once a final design has been agreed with you, a working specifications plan will be produced with full specification details from which a landscape contractor is able to quote for the build of the garden design. This may also involve construction drawings which outline how certain features will be built.

Planting plan and schedule

At this stage a planting plan will also be produced – this is a detailed ‘map’ of each area of the new design showing the location and quantities of each plant, together with a planting schedule which is a shopping list of all the plants.

My industry-standard terms and conditions will be attached to the quote and you are invited to accept the quote, sign the ts and cs, and pay a 25% deposit to commission the work.

Further services

Once the design work has been completed I am then able to offer other services – monitoring the design direction of the project and sourcing plants and materials, working with contractors that I can recommend, ones you have found, or working with you if you’ve decided to do it yourself, and providing contacts for maintenance companies as needed. This is how I can support in the next stages:

Landscape contractor quote/tender process

A landscape contractor will provide you with a quote for the creation of the design based on the details of the specification plan and agree with you the cost of the build. I can put you in contact with recommended contractors. 

Project monitoring

The landscape contractor will create a garden based on the agreed design specifications. If you wish, I can monitor the design direction of the project,  alongside the contractor.


Planting is my specialism and most clients are keen for me to source and plant for them. I use the planting schedule – a ‘shopping list’ of the plants within the design – to get quotes for the plants from tried and tested trade nurseries.

I agree with you in advance an estimate for sourcing plants, arranging deliveries and planting out.


Ongoing maintenance is vital for the survival of your newly designed space. Some people are keen gardeners, others just want to enjoy it without the work. I am able to provide a maintenance plan for you to follow or for you to brief a gardener or garden maintenance company.


I always recommend that clients hold a contingency sum of around 15% of the total cost to cover any unforeseen circumstances which require extra work – digging up earth can be unpredictable.

“Emma is astonishingly efficient and clear thinking – her ability to bring people together and understand the brief demonstrates her skill and empathy for different people’s needs. Coupled with her extraordinary time management, these qualities make Emma excellent value for money.”

Debbie, Latimer

To start talking about your outdoor space, fill in the form below or contact Emma Hanford on 07702 599562 or