Catherine StewartWorst front landscaping ever?

Worst front landscaping ever?I suppose there will be some who’ll say they’ve seen far worse. But this new front ‘garden‘ (to use the term very loosely) really is the pits.

On one side we have a rectangle of buffalo lawn surrounded by a narrow bed of Japanese box.

Lawn and buxus edging

And, on the other, several soldier’s courses of sandstone blocks supporting new, small terraces around the base of a mature (retained) eucalypt, planted with teeny weeny specimens of one species of fern, each helplessly marooned in a sea of tan bark.

Sandstone terracing with tiny ferns in a sea of tan bark

Just in case I’m accused of exaggerating the awfulness, I will admit that the builder has used 50% more plant variety than shown in these photos – there are 3 small sasanqua camellias against the side fence. However given the stacked materials and debris and then the mini concrete mixer that sat under this tree during landscaping works, and the excavation around its root zone for the terraces, I suspect it won’t last too long, so then that will be minus one species.

So what do you think? Does it win the award for WORST FRONT LANDSCAPING EVER?

Worst front landscaping ever?

Worst front landscaping ever?

Postscript – this house was up for auction last week. Despite record clearance rates in Sydney’s northside, it did not sell.

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Catherine Stewart

About Catherine Stewart

Award-winning garden journalist, blogger and photographer; writer for garden magazines and co-author of 'Waterwise Gardening'; landscape designer turned landscape design judge and critic; compulsive networker and lover of generally putting fingers in lots of pies. Particularly mud pies. Creator, curator and editor of GardenDrum. Sydney, NSW.

8 thoughts on “Worst front landscaping ever?

  1. Catherine, it’s very sterile, unimaginative and boring. However at least they did not use fake grass (I refuse to dignify it by using the term artificial turf).

    • You mean like this landscaping which is, I think, all fake grass? The design statement says that the use of “synthetic grass…unifies the landscape areas and helps provide a balance to the architectural scale.” Although how a flat piece of vibrant green shaggy plastic provides balance to architectural scale remains a mystery.

  2. Not sure if its really considered landscaping.
    Its more a case of ‘just do something with what the architect forgot about’

  3. Tragic ‘landscaping’ like this is sadly far too common.
    The front courtyards in recently completed townhouses in Norman Park, Brisbane are a reminder of how important it is to engage landscape professionals. Some cowboy (with apologies to real cowboys) has planted in each small space a neat row of three ‘dear little’ standard Ficus Benjaminas – 1m apart. If left to grow to 15m x 15m, the residents won’t have any plumbing but at least they’ll be able to live in tree houses.

  4. I agree Catherine that it’s bad, but I have actually seen worse. Personally I feel that regulation is needed in our industry – at least for minimum standards.
    Good garden designers have to compete against this rubbish. But the house itself is cold and in my opinion ostentatious. The garden should have had a softening effect; instead it has just made it worse.

  5. Ingrid on said:

    A “garden” without a soul – more a collection of plants in an empty space with a house. Did a garden designer do this? If yes, then they need to go back to design school.

    • Garden designer? Hell no! This is design by builder. Incidentally the house has now sold for AU$4 million

  6. Katie Caban on said:

    Says it all. Money sure doesn’t buy taste. Box shapes abound…. Keep it neat and contained. That’s what’s important. Cant let nature get out of control. Oh dear.

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