Ireland, Zone 9

Ireland, Zone 9a

1/4 Acre Abundance

Client’s Goals:

To grow as much food as possible but keep the aesthetics of the garden looking nice. The client wishes to keep chickens and has dogs on the property. The client has also specifically requested perennial flowers, Elderberry, Paw Paw, Potatoes, Carrots, Cucumber, and parsnips.

Scope of Work:

The lawn is to remain as lawn as much as possible with only the boundaries of the property to be designed. These boundaries will be covered in carboard and heavily mulched with wood chips to suppress weeds. Additional paving and a driveway will be installed by the client, and additional growing space has been added taking this into account.

The client has plenty of topsoil available on site to fill the beds.

Additional Notes and Recommendations:

There are a few plants included in the design and care will need to be taken around the dogs. The property has an existing Laurel Hedge which also can be harmful to dogs. There is a document included with a list of plants that are harmful to dogs.

Zone 1

In zone 1 there are 2 raised beds, a chicken coop, and a 3-bay composting system. The chicken coop will operate as a deep bedding system with woodchips or hay acting as a carbon source. This can be cleaned out into the 3-bay compost bin twice a year, allowed to get hot, and will be ready several weeks later. This can be applied to the garden as a top dressing of compost. 

The chickens will need to be let out every day. Keep a composting bucket in the kitchen and in the morning this bucket can be taken to the coop. The waste can be fed to the chickens, or it can be added to the compost pile.

The eggs are collected, and salad crops can be harvested from RB1 and RB2 for a breakfast omelet.

Zone 2 – Wall Garden

The wall garden is south facing and is painted white which reflects a lot of heat. The design has included heat-loving plants and climbing plants which can be trellised up the wall. 2 Fig trees, 2 grape vines, and 3 Paw Paws have been included in this area.

At the front of this area, 10 Raised beds are included for several annual crops.

A Flower Bed has also been included which is located at the front of the house at the entrance. This makes for a pleasant view of the road-facing section of the house. These flowers can be summer bedding or whatever is available in the area to suit the client’s tastes.

Zone 2 – Permaculture Orchard

A permaculture orchard has been included. Each fruit tree is attached to a nitrogen-fixing tree which will help fertilize the plant.

Zone 2 – Row Crops

Row Crops have been located behind the Raspberry and Blackberry bushes. This will keep the row crops sheltered and obscured from the view of the house. These row crops will be for long-term storage crops which can be planted and harvested with minimal maintenance. This area could be fenced off to stop the dogs from having access to it.

Zone 3 – East Boundary

The east boundary includes multiple figs, herbs, and a row of 6 different perennial berry bushes.

Zone 3 – West Boundary

The west boundary has an existing Laurel hedge. The design includes 3 beds of strawberries. This is close to the car parking where it will be easy to see the ripe strawberries and harvest whilst coming and going from the property.

Privacy Hedge & Hidden Area

An edible hedge of European Barberry acts as a barrier to the hidden “messy” area. This area consists of additional composting, a nursery area, a potting area, and a polytunnel. With all the diversity of plants on the property, it will be possible to take cuttings and multiply the trees. This can be done at the start to reduce the initial outlay or once completed to provide an income.

The polytunnel can be used to protect plants in the winter and for season extension for warm summer crops like Aubergines, Tomatoes, Peppers, and Chillies.


Tubers & Ground Covers are provided as optional extras should they be required.

Dog Safety

Asparagus Ferns, Elderberry, and Laurel are listed as being unsafe for dogs in certain circumstances.

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