Sunday

5 Applications to Help you Design Your Own Garden

 

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This article, I admit to writing with a massive pinch of salt, because most people understand that the computer is only as creative as the person using it.

At T
he Oxford College of Garden Design we teach VectorWorks Landmark, but this is  expensive and more complex than most homeowners need. For those wishing to have a go them selves, we have several 4 week online courses at MyGardenSchool on both planting and landscape design. The following list of software I hope may be of interest to those wishing to have a go themselves.

SmartDraw 2010
SmartDraw is a drawing application to design floor plans business graphics, diagrams and charts of all kinds. The program improves communication, organization, management and planning by drawing any processes. If you know Microsoft’s Visio, this program will be familiar to you. The application also has tutorials to help.


DeltaCad
DeltaCad is more than just a paint program, because you can edit, scale, move, rotate, copy, etc. individual objects, not just paint pixels. DeltaCad allows you to zoom in to draw fine details or zoom out to see the whole drawing.

 

Showoff Home Design
The program features many in-built tools and options. The user needs Internet connection to work with the application. It features a category list with an option to choose annuals. The catalogue tab helps to choose from landscape plants, home improvements, furnishings and d├ęcor, or other items that cover a broad range of home improvements.


Realtime Landscaping Architect
New landscape design software for creating professional plans and presentations. Design houses, decks, fencing, yards, gardens, swimming pools, water features, and much more with easy-to-use tools. Give your plans a hand-drawn look using a wide variety of plant symbols and colour washes. Add plant labels automatically using the wizard, and add a plant legend with just a few mouse clicks.

Home Designer Landscape and Deck
With Home Designer Landscape & Deck by Chief Architect Software you can plan and design your perfect outdoor living space! Landscape & Deck makes it easy to quickly design the virtual look and feel of your backyard, deck, patio, pool or other outdoor project. Just point-and-click to add pre-arranged landscaping beds and any of over 4,000 Library items and over 3,600 realistic plants to your design.

Tuesday

Why Study On-line?

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TRADITIONAL OR VIDEO BASED ON-LINE LEARNING?

Traditional or "face to face" landscape design schools require you to attend classes in person, whilst a video based online garden design program offers all of the coursework through an online learning environment. Traditional programs require you to attend school on specific days and times, with classes varying in size from 5 - 40 students. Video based on-line programs such as those at Oxford College of Garden Design provide courses that can be taken 24/7, with class sizes limited to a maximum of 10 students per tutor. Tutor and student interaction in these programs occurs via our virtual classroom with webinars, VOIP, email, and other technologies, so that you are not required to be “in class” at any specific time.

Here are some other considerations when choosing between the more traditional garden schools and the online program at the Oxford College of Garden Design:
 

Traditional schools

Oxford College
Online Diploma

Will my course equip me to practise as a professional garden designer?

Sometimes

Yes

Can I continue to work full time?

No

Yes

Will I have to give up my salary?

Usually

No

Can I continue to earn a living while starting my new business?

Sometimes

Yes

Can I study whenever and where ever I want?

No

Yes

Can I repeat my lectures?

No

Yes

Can I extend my course for up to 36 months?

No

Yes

Are my tutors working designers?

Sometimes

Yes

24/7 access to course materials?

No

Yes

Daily access to my tutors and classmates?

Sometimes

Yes

Multimedia instructional videos?

No

Yes

Group discussions and 1-2-1 critiques?

Sometimes

Yes

Flexible hand in dates?

Sometimes

Yes

Classmates from around the world?

Sometimes

Yes

Able to ask questions 24/7?

No

Yes

Will I have train/petrol parking expenses?

Usually

No

Will I have to spend time commuting?

Usually

No

This is not a correspondence course delivered online. This is the world’s first and only video based course where you get exactly the same lectures via the internet as you would if you were sitting in the classroom in person.

Friday

Double Gold for Former Students at Hampton Court Palace Flower Show

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The Oxford College of Garden Design has two students who have won Gold at this years RHS Hampton Court Flower Show
Dan Lobb won gold and Best Conceptual Garden and Melissa Jolly got a Gold for her garden entitled ‘Picturesque’ also in the Conceptual category.

Dan’s garden is a subterranean underworld. Above ground the garden may appear somewhat austere with steel periscopes surrounding a tilted panel of turf - but gaze through a periscope and you can enjoy your own private view of the extraordinary garden below.
The undulating landscape of Landscape Obscured is planted entirely with edible fungi interwoven with mosses and liverworts surrounds a “lake”. The imagination feasts on this surreal, subterranean world reminiscent of fairytale forests while the angular, modernist steelwork reflects Man’s relationship with the land. Fungi form the longest living and largest communities on earth and are often overlooked. This garden provides a glimpse of these fascinating life forms.
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While Melissa’s garden aims to evoke the works of specific artists or genres through the use of planting. By replicating the layout of an art gallery, openings in the gallery walls frame the different compositions of planting and the viewer’s attention is focused on each contrasting picture.
Picturesque illustrates how both gardens and plants can be seen as forms of art, and demonstrates a method for creating beautiful views even when external space is limited.

Tuesday

Gold Medal for Former Student

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Melissa Jolly a former student of the Oxford College of Garden Design has been awarded an RHS Gold Medal for her 2011 Hampton Court Show garden entitled ‘Picturesque
This unique and innovative installation is more art than garden, using plants to represent famous paintings.  Designed as a gallery, the public are invited in to so a series of recessed pictures made up of a combination of collage, photography and planting.
As part of our online diploma course student have to design a Chelsea Flower Show garden as an exercise and are taught to think outside the box. 

Melissa, who has already won several other medals for her show gardens says “that this exercise was invaluable in helping her think creatively.  I wouldn’t design a garden like this for a client, but this show that I can create something special for my clients.”
She then went on to say “I can't quite believe it and have had some really lovely feedback from the press...esp. The Independent journalist who said I should see if I can take it to the Royal Academy”

We would like to extend our congratulations to Mel for her well deserved award and hope this spurs all are students on to bigger and better things.
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