Renowned for her cool sophisticated design and stylish planting schemes, the gardens have a certain intangible glamour.
Franchesca is fascinated with the ability of gardens to connect people and nature, and the process of building gardens that combine beauty, architecture and art with sound ethical principles. To this end, she uses methods, materials and plants appropriate to the site and general environment. Her philosophy is that to be truly sustainable, a garden needs to be right first time, and so she designs to suit the architecture, climate and particular clients regime. Based in Cape Town, Franchesca has undertaken private and commercial gardens all over Southern Africa, and also in Europe, Britain, Australia, UAE and the Seychelles.
Originally trained in decorative and performing arts, Franchesca is noted for her instinctive design approach and profound plant knowledge. Her gardens embody the connections between architecture, lifestyle, ecology and sustainability.
PROCESS OF MAKING
Making a garden is a complex art in that one works within parameters that cannot be dictated: weather, soils, space, exposure and above all time. A garden is never truly finished or fully static and needs constant adjustment and nurture. It is however, one of the most satisfying and absorbing experiences in life, both to make and to enjoy long into the future.
The parameters and conditions of the site are understood and recorded: orientation, views, wind direction, soil types, contours and levels, exposure, sun/shade, existing vegetation, etc
Bearing in mind the client brief, a big brain idea is developed for the garden, which will lay down the overall concept. The initial design is recorded in a simple clear manner for presentation and discussion.
The details of the garden are worked through: construction details are thought out, materials and plants are selected. Information is integrated into the various components of the project.
The garden installation is quantified, and estimates are prepared based on current rates. Detailed Bills of Quantity for formal pricing by landscape contractors can be developed if required.
Input and advice, problem solving, quality control and minor design adjustments are provided during the installation process along with positioning of trees and placing of plants directly on to the site.
Franchesca’s understanding of the design opportunities offered by the blending of architecture and landscape has lead to successful relationships with local and international clients, leading architects and designers. The process is a flexible and collaborative one and integrates the entire project, adding value and providing an exhilarating final product.
Every project and site has its own potentialities and restraints. Franchesca’s particular sensibility and broad experience ensures the creation of timeless gardens that have a high sustainability profile.