John Michael – A Brighter Shade of Green
I have spent the last 15 years working in the UK and Australia in the wonderful world of landscaping.
I began working for creation landscapes at the tender age of 18, as a general labourer. This gave me a fantastic foundation, learning the necessary skills required for difficult landscapes, paving, turfing etc.
Whilst travelling in Australia I took a job working for Tranquil Timbers in Sydney, a timber yard offering fencing and decking installation services.
I gained most of my knowledge in timber construction in this time. Working with all types of hard and soft woods, machining and preparing timbers, and making up orders for the fencing and decking installers. I was taught the benefits and weaknesses of the different types of wood available and an understanding of where they were best used.
I learned how to prepare and dress timber for decks, mortice and shape posts for fencing and balustrades, and got a greater understanding of which timber was best for each different project we were building. each species of timber has it advantages and disadvantages, so choosing the correct one for the job is very important.
Once confident in the everyday running of the timber yard, I began to go out on site, helping with installing the timber, fencing in a local home, or a extravagant deck looking out from Rose Bay to the Sydney Opera House. I gained extensive training from some of the best carpenters I’ve been lucky enough to meet.
I returned to the UK with one of my Australian colleagues and set up J and J fencing. We were immediately offered contracts with Jacksons Fine Fencing and a couple of other suppliers, working in the South East and South London, installing a wide variety of fences, from timber panelling and close board to chain link, steel panels and welded mesh.
Eventually my partner returned to Australia and I started working for myself, advertising locally in and around the Purley and Coulsdon areas. It wasn’t long before my reputation grew and I took the opportunity to release myself from sub-contracting.
Using my early knowledge of landscaping I began to get offered more garden makeovers, rather than pure fencing, and my love for building with wood came to life. I was able to build fancy decks and pergolas, summer houses, gazebos, bench seating, almost anything the customer could envision I could create.
Over time I have developed my skills and expertise in other types of landscaping such as paving, turfing, brick work, dry stone walling, and more. Expanding the foundation I had gained with Creation Landscapes.
In 2009 I returned to Australia, this time employed by Noosa where I worked with “Outside Noosa”, a concept and design company that had several corporate clients, such as Noosa Springs Golf Club. Outside Noosa had a vast concept centre in the heart of Noosa, a popular and affluent holiday destination for Aussies with many owning holiday homes there.
The properties invariably have fabulous gardens, most of which would have swimming pools, affording me a new relationship with “4Blue”, a swimming pool design and build company. The two companies would work together making our clients dreams come true. From concept to design, creating and building dream gardens and pool areas to exact specifications, with complete control and management of each project.
In 2011 I returned once more to the UK and enrolled with the KLC School of Garden Design at Hampton Court Palace in Surrey. Here I was able to put all my building skills and onsite knowledge to use, enhancing my understanding of what it is possible to achieve in different gardens.
Whether you have a small inner city garden, or a large country home, with a little vision, and plenty of passion, anything is possible.
And that brings me to A Brighter Shade of Green. With my vast knowledge of landscaping, my passion for making beautiful spaces, my skill and expertise with timber and construction, you can share your vision and make your dream garden come alive.