A courtyard for a special girl

Every so often you get lucky in life and are met with situations that make doing what you do feel even less like a job and more like doing something you love. I say this because I met with one of these situations not that long ago and it was one of those times when everything is just put back into perspective… Continue reading

Crocus for autumn, winter and spring

I think it was one of my favourite gardening writers, Hugh Johnston, who jokingly wrote that bulbs were surely invented by an industrial designer. For if one considers their exquisite functional shape and the sheer convenience of transporting and handling them … basically they have their own inbuilt packaging. The very neatness of this idea points to the work of some backroom genius. Continue reading

How to prune vireya rhododendron

I was strolling around the gardens at Stringybark Cottage on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast) with owner Cheryl Boyd when I was engulfed by a powerful perfume with which I was unfamiliar. Cheryl pointed to a group of Vireya Rhododendron (‘tropical rhododendrons’) growing under some gum trees in the garden. Continue reading

Designing with grasses

Grasses should be part of every designer’s palette but many people find it difficult to use them to best effect. I’m talking with landscape designer Christopher Owen about the many ways to use grasses in garden design, such as block planting, using a planting matrix, specimen grasses in pots, or even planting them as a hedge. Continue reading

Paradisus this weekend

Paradisus and Ian and Tom

SMALL SPACE – BIG DESIGN   -Sydney landscape designer (and GardenDrum guest blogger) Peter Nixon’s fabulous inner city ‘micro-court’ ‘Paradisus’ and nearby Ian and Tom’s garden will both be open this coming Sunday 2 March. Continue reading

Agapanthus bites the dust

In warm temperate to subtropical areas, agapanthus have been the gardener’s friend for decades. Cheap to buy and easy to propagate, drought tolerant, low maintenance and reliably flowering through November and December, agapanthus can be found in most suburban gardens through east coast Australia. But I’ve just removed the last of mine as this previous stalwart is now an ugly liability. What happened? Continue reading