Good-sized gardens are a rarity in SW6… but there are still a few streets which can cater to family needs or satisfy Monty Don-style flowerbed cravings, writes Tim Harrison

A house in Fulham with a good garden? It’s a tall order, and explains the hefty premium on prices in the leafier streets.

“Fulham’s gardens are not, on average, particularly large,” admitted Tom de Winton, sales manager in John D Wood’s Fulham office (020 7731 4223). “But for people looking for Fulham homes, it’s one of the major things they ask for. Anything with a decent garden is in high demand.”

In Fulham, it is roads such as Hestercombe Avenue, the ‘alphabet’ streets between Fulham’s Craven Cottage ground and Fulham Palace Road, and areas such as Fernhurst Road which have serious garden appeal.

John D Wood has just taken instructions on an architect-redesigned four-bedroom house in tree-lined Hestercombe Avenue, SW6, with an achingly trendy secluded, paved 47ft south-facing garden, perfect for warm-weather entertaining, screened for privacy but with a wonderful splash of green at the back. Guide price is £2.3m.

Mary-Jo Cartier, a Bristol University graduate whose thesis focused on people’s relationship with their gardens, told MoveTo that an urban garden is an extra room, a sanctuary, a football pitch, an escape hatch into a private haven. “To some, the garden is an everyday space requiring constant, tedious upkeep, however to many it is a place that provides endless enjoyment and satisfaction,” she said.

Citing international research, Mary-Jo defines the garden as ‘an exterior home-place’, and says that home and garden are intertwined as they are both private spaces defined by physical boundaries.

A garden is a place full of contradiction; private v public, inside v outside, countryside v city, nature v culture.

The garden allows a positive connection between town dwellers and nature, a calming place that’s good for the soul; a place where you can feel better about the world.

“The garden has the qualities of a small cosmos,” Mary-Jo concludes, summing up its importance and multiple uses.

A lived, everyday space, the garden “quickly becomes a very personal and intimate place as it develops its own soul through its association with pleasure, the home and memories”.

Realistically, few Fulham residents can expect to stroll through acres of their own – although proximity to the borough’s open spaces, including Hurlingham Park, Bishop’s Park, Fulham Palace Gardens, South Park and Eel Brook Common, often compensates.

The alternative is a tree-fringed terrace, where you can gaze out on greenery. John D Wood’s Fulham office has a refurbished five-bedroom home in Settrington Road, Sands End, on its books, backing on to South Park. A very useable, private terrace leads off the master en-suite, with commanding views over the park. Asking price is £2.1m.

The plus is that you can enjoy a green backdrop… without the hassle of having to maintain it. Perhaps the perfect answer.

Picture: Secluded garden in Hestercombe Avenue, on sale at John D Wood

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