Restricted Townhouse Yard
This small townhouse yard consisted of a large deck that dominated the space and a narrow strip of "grass" that was a nuisance to mow and was struggling to survive on the heavy clay based soil underneath.
The biggest challenge for this site was that the existing deck took up most of the back yard, leaving very little room for a garden. What was left was essentially a lawn strip measuring only 1m wide around the perimeter of the deck. Our other challenge was satisfying both owners who each had a very different opinion on the style of garden to go with.
It's quite common to have the two home owners share a difference of opinion when it comes to designing a gardens style and theme. In this case, one owner wanted a more informal and cottage style garden with lots of seasonal flowering interest, while the other owner wanted a neat and tidy formal garden with a simply but effective flower and colour scheme. In these instances it is always our goal to find harmony by blending style preferences of both owners.
Our first design step was to break up the long deck into different zones while inviting viewers to explore the garden beyond the back door. We achieved this by placing rectangle pots along the deck in a way that they drew you into the garden space without blocking access, but still enticing you down the deck to explore.
We replaced the grass strip with a garden bed and extended this around the corners of the deck to give the illusion that it continued on down the side of the house, thus making it feel bigger than it actually is.
For plants, we used native Corokia's at the front to create a low hedge around the deck with cottage style perennials filled in behind to create height, colour and interest. While these would self sow over time and create a meadow like effect, the low hedge will act as a barrier to contain the free flowing perennials keeping them neat and tidy while giving them a sense of order.
We created several focal points with the use of climbing jasmine on a trellis as well as plantingsome well trained citrus trees and standard ficus tuffies which will be prunned into a pleached hedge to provide privacy from the neighbours.
"We moved into a brand new home this year that had a small backyard consisting of a deck and strip of grass. My wife and I were keen to create an oasis where we could enjoy the long hot Auckland summers with friends and family but we were unsure how to do this properly and what plants to choose etc.
Luckily we were introduced to Martin from City Botanics the small space garden specialist who basically made our garden dreams a reality! Martin is a great guy, extremely professional and a talented garden designer. The entire process was fantastic from Martin’s initial visits to discuss our requirements to his selection of plants and garden design recommendations.
He made it a fun and enjoyable experience listening and interpreting our requests superbly. The final result is fantastic and we’re extremely pleased and excited about our new garden. We would not hesitate to recommend City Botanics and Martin to anyone who wants an amazing garden!"
Sean & Ngaree