Vice Versa

At the centre of this very special ‘inversed garden’ project, stand two bonsai mountain pine trees.
Usually, gardens encompass and emphasize the features of a main building. However, this plot at the end of the main valley in the Barvikha Luxury Village is very small and surrounded by the house and a few outbuildings, such as a gazebo and a spa. In total, the plot is about 15 Ares big.
To create the maximum impact, cotoneaster has been planted along the base of the house wall, complemented by spiraea, spindle-tree and mountain pine planted along the façade.
It is a radical transformation. Just a year before, the buildings’ pastoral, rural style was mirrored in an overgrown garden lot crammed to bursting point with plants like linden and northern white cedar. The owners decided that it was time for a change, and called on the services of architects Sergey Kuznetsov and Nikolai Gordushin.
They modified and updated the buildings’ facades and created a modern and succinct vision. Il Nature’s task was to ensure that the garden worked in harmony with this new environment.
After analysing the plot and the types of vegetation found on it, the first step was to really thin it out. The owners gave away the trees to their friends and family. We left a few trees, mainly the bonsai pines, which are quite popular in Barviha, and the original northern white cedars, as well as the cotoneaster, which is used to ‘back up’ the cedars.
The next step was to create a central lawn and make it fit with the access road. As a result, the grounds now has a sort of a roundabout, where cars can gracefully approach the house and turn around without problems.
In order to create a romantic evening atmosphere, we have placed lighting features around the plot that light up the central circular lawn and the plants themselves. The lighting is designed to emphasize both architectural and vegetative elements of the garden. As a result, the small garden changes completely when viewed from different angles, in different lighting and during different parts of the day. In spite of its small size and modern feel, the plot pays clear homage to both the English and French 18th century landscape garden styles. One main difference is that instead of using boulders the road is paved, and expensive cars have replaced the carriages.
This is hardly surprising. A lot of time has past since Watteau painted scenes of idyllic garden charm, in the genre of fêtes galantes; and each epoch needs its own gardens – which pay tribute to those that came before.