Who We Are
‘Gardens and landscapes are by their very nature dynamic and we seek
to create gardens that can be enjoyed from the outset and maintained in the long term.’
Semple Begg is a landscape and garden design practice with studios in Scotland and Switzerland. We are recognised for creating imaginative and sustainable spaces that are in harmony with the natural and built environment. We work on a wide range of projects in the UK, Switzerland, France and USA; small and large domestic, public and commercial.
Each project is a response, both artistic and pragmatic, to our clients’ wishes, personal style, the space itself and the wider natural landscape. Our aim is to have a light, deft touch and we are guided by the desire to create soulful gardens with a unique sense of place, atmosphere and character.
‘We listen carefully to our clients’ wishes and aim to surpass their expectations and create outdoor paces that enhance lives.’
Sense of Place
Defining the elements that contribute to a sense of place is perhaps the most important yet elusive skill that we bring to any project. It requires immense sensitivity and perception to tease out the ephemeral qualities that shape our sense of place. At any one time there are countless variables that play upon our senses; light, colour, materials, heights, paths, vistas, planting, structures/buildings and the void, or spaces, between them.
They all play on our senses, leading us to feel intuitively what is ‘right’ or appropriate, what makes one space feel intimate and another dynamic. It is our role to subtly shape these elements, to coax into being gardens that function beautifully and feel effortlessly right.
Collaboration and Sustainability
Creating unique and beautiful spaces relies on a collaborative, multi-disciplinary approach. Working closely with architects, contractors, nurseries, artists, engineers, planners and other specialists, dependent on the project requirements, to achieve optimal implementation and on-time delivery of our designs.
Ever mindful of the impact of human activity on the environment we try to mitigate this by sourcing plants and materials and that are made, quarried or grown sustainably.
Equally importantly, our response to the choice of materials and planting is guided by the site conditions and changing climate. This is especially important when working in areas subject to drought, flooding and dramatic fluctuations in temperature.
Semple Begg was founded by Nicola Semple and Susan Begg in 2014. The Swiss practice was established in 2018.
Working internationally in both English and French affords Semple Begg a unique perspective and breadth of experience. Nicola and Susan are trained and qualified in a broad range of disciplines – garden and landscape design, horticulture, architecture and design history – and all projects benefit from our combined input and commitment to collaborative, reflective practice.