Garden & Landscaping Architect
+31 (0)657 54 61 36
+31 (0)657 54 61 36
When it comes to garden development, design, construction management, planting and garden styling one should definitely see our managing partners in outdoor matters: Wim Takkebos and Duuk Muilwijk of The Green Contractors.
The Green Contractors offers full-management services to clients seeking an outside space which is both beautiful and functional. Their portfolio of work includes a wide range of garden designs, from contemporary court yards, roof terraces to large country gardens. Their gardens are recognised for their strong, clean, architectural lines, lush planting, and elegant styling and use of colour. We also specialise in discreet but effective garden lighting and bespoke water features.
They work collaboratively with our clients, listening to their needs, to ensure that the garden design brief is clear and is interpreted correctly in the finished plan. Our aim is to reflect as closely as possible the styling, decoration and colour palette of the client’s home so that there is a strong visual relationship between the inside and outside spaces. We regularly work closely with architects and interior designers to ensure that this is achieved.
Wim and Duuk work with a large group of various first class landscape contractors and specialists to ensure the garden design process, from initial concept to project completion, is smooth and seamless.
They also specialise in garden lighting, bespoke water features and swimming pools. We work collaboratively with our clients to ensure that the garden design brief is clear and is interpreted correctly in the finished plan.
The Green Contractors’ approach to client service
‘It can be difficult to visualise how your garden could look and to work out where to put features and plants for best effect. Our role is to help you do just that. We will listen to your requirements and ideas, absorb and interpret them and turn them into reality with the minimum of fuss, time and bother’ according to Wim. ‘This could be a full-blown garden design project including a presentation plan, construction drawings and planting plan, or occasionally with large gardens, we can help with planting only’.
‘From the first meeting, we work together with our clients to draw up a list of requirements and develop the concept. We encourage our clients to source images of what kind of garden they are looking for in terms of style, colour, materials, and then we work with them to interpret their needs and turn it into reality. Following thorough discussions with our clients, we carry out a formal site analysis, prepare the garden design brief and draw up the presentation plan which can be discussed and adapted in collaboration with our client’.
‘At The Green Contractors we can design anything from small urban courtyards to large rural gardens for clients in both the Netherlands and throughout Europe. Our experience and portfolio extends to gardens in the UK, Spain, Ibiza, Channel Islands, Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland and Germany.
We also do not limit ourselves to one style of garden. No two people want exactly the same garden and no two gardens are exactly the same. Some people adore plants and enjoy spending time looking after them. Others want the easiest, quickest option, with the minimum of maintenance.
The important issue is that you must be able to use your garden as you want. It should be a beautiful space for you and your family and friends to enjoy and use. You may want a soft, green abundantly planted garden with lots of floral interest. Or you may want an elegant, contemporary garden with the minimum of fuss. That is very much your choice.
The common element in our gardens is that they are well designed both functionally and visually and have strong ‘bone structure’ with soft planting’.
Steps & Services
The first step is to conduct a detailed site analysis and to formulate a brief. This is normally carried out during a couple of meetings with our client.
We photograph the site and discuss design details in depth with the client, or if the site is large, a full land survey is carried out.
We then prepare a master sketch plan in CAD and, usually, also in a hand-rendered format, a CGI render, perspective drawing and a mood board which illustrate how the garden will look.
Once the design is approved by the client, we prepare specifications and working drawings from which the contractors can prepare a quotation for the landscaping works.
Finally, we prepare a planting plan and full planting list for client approval.
Project supervision and project administration
We will help you select your contractor and supervise all works on your behalf. If required we can also administer the contract to give you peace of mind and ensure that the project remains within budget and on time.
Garden landscaping has a number of construction challenges which are unlike any potential problems found in the interior of a house. It is a specialised area which requires a range of skills. Therefore, as it is particularly important that an experienced and knowledgeable landscaper is recruited to carry out major external works.
Once the landscaping is underway, The Green Contractors will supervise works to ensure that the project is steered correctly towards the final design and finish specified. This involves regular site visits, the signing off of work as it is completed and, if required, the certification of completed work.
This project administration stage is crucial as quite often design decisions are needed at quite a late stage as the project develops.
Even the most contemporary gardens with clean architectural lines and strong bone structure need to be softened with beautiful planting. One of our strengths is to echo, through the planting, some of the decorative elements of the interior of our clients’ homes. Lush and luxurious planting is a signature note of our gardens, where feasible.
You may have an existing garden which is structurally well designed but has some gaps or areas of inappropriate or tired planting. In this case, if the size of the garden is large, we can also offer a planting service. This could involve a total redesign of your borders or could simply be supplementary or seasonal planting.
We prepare planting plans outlining plant varieties, numbers, spacing and plant care, followed by the sourcing and selection of plants and finally the setting out and planting of plants.
We work with a small selection of specialist trade plant nurseries to source the best possible plant specimens.
Garden styling and design
At The Green Contractors, we take a cooperative approach, developing the design concept together with our clients, tailoring the service according to their taste, needs and budget. We can design everything from water features and pergolas and arbours to details such fencing, screens, trellis, benches, plant containers and window boxes.
We can source a wide range of garden furniture from all over the world which might not be easily available in the Netherlands. We can also help with such items as sculpture and other decorative elements.
Sometimes in the case of large established gardens, there is a simply a need to review what already exists, advice on the best way to improve it and tweak it. This may include designing new containers and window boxes, replanting or simply renewing furniture and sourcing cushions, garden lanterns or simply re-covering cushions and chair pads.
Ongoing garden design advice
Plants are expensive and need to be looked after. For clients who have used any of our services, we can offer on-going advice on design, styling and planting. A garden is an organic thing and needs some on-going attention and care, even if it has minimal planting. It is important to carry out a review of your garden annually or seasonally and carry out remedial work as required.
To further assist our clients with the upkeep of their gardens, we can also recommend landscape maintenance contractors and gardeners to help with regular garden care. We like to make regular visits, where feasible, to our completed gardens to see how things are developing and sometimes additional or revised planting is needed.
Water and Light in gardens designed by The Green Contractors
Green Contractors has designed & developed many gardens using water; streams, water chutes, rills, reflection waters and fountains have all played a part.
Water is a wonderful additional surface which adds great depth and interest to a garden. It also helps to attract birds and other wildlife to a garden.
Lighting is a key component of The Green Contractors. Lighting adds another dimension to an outdoor space, creating a totally different view of the garden at night and making the space usable and visible throughout the year. Our lighting is subtle yet can also add drama to a garden.
In short; if you are looking for an uncompromising quality, paired with exquisite design and exceptional customer service to enhance the quality of your outdoor living space, we claim The Green Contractors is the place to go!