Dan Pearson

Photo credits: Clare Takacs


United Kingdom

Dan Pearson Studio is a landscape design practice established in 1987 by internationally recognised landscape designer, Dan Pearson.  

The naturalistic use of plants is fundamental to the studio’s work and our experience and understanding of natural ecologies and habitats results in painterly planting schemes that express a heightened naturalism and are uniquely suited to each project. We value the ephemeral nature of gardens, and create planting schemes that reflect the natural cycles, whilst providing year round interest through use of a considered plant palette.  
We aim to create timeless spaces, which encourage people to connect with nature, whilst acknowledging the tension between nature and culture. The intrinsic qualities of a site are heightened through gentle interventions that tread lightly on the land, freeing the user to engage with natural elements in a way that is seemingly unmediated, producing inspiring environments that encourage contemplation and self-reflection.

 Dan Pearson is a British landscape designer, horticulturalist, writer and gardener.  

Dan trained in horticulture at RHS Gardens’ Wisley, the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Jerusalem Botanical Gardens and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.  
Dan has designed a number of award-winning show gardens at the Chelsea Flower Show. His 2015 show garden for Chatsworth and Laurent Perrier was awarded a Gold Medal and Best Show Garden.  
He is a member of the Society of Garden Designers (MSGD), an honorary fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects (Hon FRIBA) and a Royal Designer for Industry (RDI). Since 2014 he has been a Garden Advisor to the National Trust at Sissinghurst Castle.


Lowther Castle, United Kingdom

Dan Pearson Studio was commissioned to develop a Masterplan including a series of gardens surrounding the 19th Century Lowther Castle. Set within a 75,000 acre agricultural estate in Cumbria’s Lake District National Park, and within a 3,000 acre medieval deer park originally laid out by the Lowther family in the 16th & 17th centuries.  

The grounds were subsequently remodelled by Capability Brown, Richardson and Webb in the 18th & 19th Centuries.  Dan Pearson Studio completed a masterplan in 2012 and took forward the delivery of the Orchard (2014), East Wing Ruin (2016), Parterre Garden (2015), Arrival Courtyard (2017), South Façade & Central Tower (2017), Rose Garden (Stage 5 Ongoing), West Wing & Western Range HLF (Round 1 Submission Sept 2019) and continues with other Garden Planting Designs. 

A masterplan proposal for a ruined castle in the Lake District. A parterre garden of muted grasses and moody perennials creates a magical space in front of the castle. Further out woodland paths lead to the ruined moss-covered Rockery, Japanese and Sweet Scented gardens. 

Tokachi Millennium Forest, Japan

On Japan’s northernmost island, the Tokachi Millennium Forest is an ambitious and visionary environmental conservation project, with a 1000-year sustainable vision. Intended by entrepreneur Mitsushige Hayashi to offset the carbon footprint of his national newspaper business, the park is spread out across a plateau and the wooded foothills of Hokkaido’s central Hidaka mountain range. 

Hayashi’s vision for the park is intended to halt the loss of natural habitat on Hokkaido, and to cultivate a deeper appreciation of nature by offering Japan’s mainly urban population the chance to engage with the landscape, forest, gardens and farms. We were asked to develop a masterplan alongside local landscape designer, Fumiaki Takano, to meet Hayashi’s vision and then design a number of gardens to serve as visitor attractions and destinations within the forest. 

The Earth Garden creates a connection between a family restaurant and the impressive mountains beyond, with undulating land forms that create a series of dynamic waves in the grassland. These are intended to arouse visitors’ curiosity, provide a soft playscape for children and invite them to explore the wider landscape. The ornamental Meadow Garden offers bold sweeps of colourful massed perennials, many of which are Japanese natives found growing in the Entrance Forest. This garden provides a landscape of delight and wonder, introducing visitors to the region’s native flora and fauna in a heightened aesthetic environment. 

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