Swedish Academy of Garden Design

Swedish Garden Design

The course Swedish Garden Design is aimed at those who want to be able to take assignments that focus on the design of domestic gardens and other garden environments using suitable plants and materials and different garden styles, themes or trends as a basis. The course provides knowledge and inspiration about Swedish garden design in particular, allowing for the students to design according to the subtle, minimalistic and nature inspired ‘nordic light’ aesthetic.

Swedish Garden Design is an open learning course that covers the most common garden styles in Sweden, garden themes, current Swedish garden trends and how to build a concept from your garden idea. You will also learn how to compose thriving plantings on the basis of colour, shape and texture, how to create garden milieus that offer a range of experiences depending on the season and time of day, and how to use lighting in combination with plants and other materials. We reason around the choice of materials and what to look for when choosing suppliers. The module on presentation techniques covers how to argue for and sell your idea to a customer using illustrations, collages and other aids. On the course you can also see how landscape architect Caroline Hjalmarsson works on a garden around a detached house, from the first contact with the garden’s owner, through the entire working process from the idea to finished proposal.


The course’s aims are that you should be able to:

  • describe the most common garden styles in Sweden
  • formulate a theme or an idea in words and pictures
  • compose a planting on the basis of colour, shape and texture

You should also be able to present a garden design proposal:

  • that offers different experiences depending on the season and time of day
  • with proper garden plans and lists of plants and other materials
  • in which you argue  for your idea with the help of illustrations, collages and other aids


Garden styles, trends & themes

  • Garden styles
  • Trends
  • Themes


  • Colour in garden design
  • What is colour?


  • Lighting in the garden

Plant composition

  • Plant composition
  • Compose using color, shape & texture

Presentation techniques

  • Presentation techniques
  • Concept
  • Inspiration pictures
  • Collage
  • Thumbnail sketches
  • Models
  • Garden plans
  • Drawing techniques
  • Packaging

A proposal takes shape

  • The first meeting
  • Proposal I
  • Extra meeting
  • Proposal II
  • Proposal III
  • Proposal IV
  • Presentation


  • Front garden
  • Conservatory
  • Commission


Starting date: Flexible. Price: £990,00 GBP incl VAT.

Duration: One year. Approximately 200 study hours are required.

Diploma: A course certificate is rewarded once all course modules are completed and examinations are passed.

In practice

The course is conducted entirely at distance, with no physical meetings. Our educational platform is used to access your course material, complete assignments and communicate with your teacher.

We estimate that it takes around 200 hours to complete the course, but you have twelve months in which to do so. The course has 24 lessons that are accompanied by exercises, lectures, factual texts, example pictures and slide shows. The course ends with a three-part examination in which you will produce three proposals, one for each part, which you submit to your teacher for comments and feedback.

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