Fern & Pine Garden Design Studio

Fern and Pine are garden designers and landscape architects based in Brighton, UK.

Our design studio specialises in residential garden and landscape design. Based in Brighton, we offer design services throughout East and West Sussex, Surrey, Kent, London and surrounding areas. In fact, just give us a call, we are happy to travel for the right projects. We love to make lovely gardens for lovely clients.

Fern & Pine Design Studio Ltd is run by Alick Nee, a fully qualified garden designer and landscape architect. We specialise in residential garden design, working directly with clients and homeowners to create the perfect garden to suit your budget, brief and aspirations. We like to focus on simple, elegant, contemporary design that can underpin the structure and layout of the garden, and combine this with exuberant planting schemes to bring seasonality, joy, and unexpected moments throughout the gardening year.

Fern and Pine also work with developers, architects and contractors, designing both public and private landscape schemes to suit a range of budgets and requirements. Alick has extensive experience working for some of the industries leading landscape architecture practices, delivering high-end and high-profile landscape builds, particularly within London, with experience ranging from initial concept development, through complex planning processes to final delivery on site. Whilst Fern and Pine remains itself a small company, we collaborate with a network of landscape architects and consultants to deliver larger projects.

Alick Nee Brighton Garden Designer at Fern and Pine Garden Design Studio

Hello i'm Alick

Director, Fern and Pine

BA (Hons) Garden Design, PGDip Landscape Architecture

A Brighton born and bred designer, with an absolute love affair for gardens, plants, contemporary design, and creating beautiful gardens for lovely clients. Nothing brings me more joy than seeing a clients excitement build as their garden is transformed into their own little (or big!) sanctuary.

I graduated from the University of Greenwich with a First Class Honours Degree in Garden Design in 2011, and stayed on to complete a Post-Graduate Diploma in Landscape Architecture, gaining a Distinction in 2012. So whilst being a fully qualified Landscape Architect, my foundation was built on an arts degree purely focussing on all aspects of gardens. Previous to this I studied Horticulture here in Brighton and I am also a Licentiate Member of the Landscape Institute and a Pre-Registered Member of the Society of Garden Designers.

Fern & Pine was born in 2018 when deciding to branch out on my own after working for and with a host of talented and internationally recognised garden designers and landscape architects since 2009. Most notably, I spent 6 years working for the globe-spanning, multiple RHS gold medal winning garden designer Andy Sturgeon. Here I learnt to hone my craft working on a huge variety of complex gardens from luxury Holland Park gems, fabulous high rise terraces in Hong Kong, to revitalised country estates down in the Devon countryside. I was also involved in a huge number of large-scale commercial developments in Kensington, Chelsea, Battersea, West Hampstead, Earls Court and Regents Park.

Gardens is where my true love lies, so this was the idea of creating my own studio to focus primarily on garden design projects. All projects are considered, and I often work with a range of experienced landscape architects and established garden designers, either collaboratively or on a freelance basis, depending on the project.

Drop me an email or give me a ring if you’d like to discuss a project, collaboration or opportunity.

Brief collection and site visit

The first and most important aspect of any garden design project we get involved with, is coming to see you, the site and talk about what you want to achieve. This is a chance for us to meet, to get a feel for the site and discuss all the opportunities, constraints, and options available.

From this, we can develop a brief for the design, this will be the starting point of all design work, so we’ll chat, ask questions, bounce ideas around, and we’ll write all of this up together with our fee proposal, so that we can agree the next steps.

We often ask clients to pull together some images of things they like or gardens they really love. Pintrest is a great way to do this and we’re happy for you to share your boards with us. We even make boards for clients, pulling together ideas that we can bounce around. Sometimes just visiting your home, and getting to see your style, taste, art, & furniture gives us some great starting points.

Budgets and design fees

This can be tricky to set, you might not know how much you are looking to spend, or you might have a very fixed amount in mind. We’re happy to discuss all options with you. Building gardens isn’t cheap, it’s like an extension or complete renovation of a house, just outside! And everything needs to stand up to the elements all year round, and often, until you are out of the ground and all your foundations and groundworks compete, you bury most of the cost. Each garden is unique, and depending on the features you want, the costs will vary dramatically. Happy to have initial chats over the phone, we can also arrange to put together initial budget costings for you, either ourselves for a fee, or by collaborating with an experienced cost consultant or quantity surveyor.

Our design fees directly respond to the size and complexity of the project. Usually we offer a fixed fee for each stage of the design process (see below), with any additional site visits, meetings or work outside our agreed fee based on an hourly or day rate.

A project with a total construction value of between £10k and £50k will attract fees anywhere between 12.5 and 18%. A £100k construction value attracts fees at around 10%. For projects over £150k this drops to about 9% and at £500k fees drop to about 8%.


One of the most important aspects, we need to start with a good base plan. Small to medium gardens can be surveyed by Alick. For larger and more complex sites, a reputable surveying company can be instructed to carry out the survey. If required, a full arboricultural survey can be arranged for all trees on site.


Working from the brief, the next step is to produce a document to fully visualise the design. This will include layout plans, sections and elevations if needed, plus hand sketches, 3D computer visuals and precedent images to communicate the vision to you. I’ll present this to you with samples of hard materials proposed and a concept planting palette.


Once you’ve signed off the concept design, we’ll produce a full hard & soft landscape design package. This will include construction details, setting out plans, specifications, planting plans and all relevant schedules. Using this package, we then normally invite three experienced landscape contractors to tender for the works, and we’ll complete a tender analysis for you and help you choose the best landscape contractor for the job.


During the construction phase, we inspect the contractor’s work to ensure the quality of the build, attending regular site meetings and reporting back to yourself to keep you informed. We can also source and supply all the plants for your project, and oversee deliveries, setting out and planting on site to realise the final vision in full. We work with some great UK and European nurseries sourcing the most fabulous plants.

Our Work

A selection of in-progress garden design and landscape projects

We specialise in residential garden design, working directly with clients and homeowners to create the perfect garden to suit your budget, brief and aspirations. We like to focus on simple, elegant, contemporary design that can underpin the structure and layout of the garden, and combine this with exuberant planting schemes to bring seasonality, joy, and unexpected moments throughout the gardening year.

Get in touch

If you wish to discuss a project, collaboration or opportunity, drop us an email, give us a call, or use the form on the right to get in touch.

Fern and Pine Garden Design Studio

Unit 5 Level 5 North

New England House

New England Street



Phone: +44 (0) 7528 505 378

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