Two years ago, after Jenny and Roy’s new house was built on a plot overlooking the tranquil marsh area of the lagoon, Jenny embarked on designing her new garden. Prior to any planting, the soil was enriched with loads of compost and soil conditioners. Although there are many eclectic elements in the garden, the design is simple and pleasing. Colourful beds brimming with shrubs, perennials and annuals, surround the strong lines of the lawn. Jenny’s love for vibrant colour in the garden is a reflection of her sunny personality; there are red and yellow combinations, working in perfect harmony with the greys and purples.
The immaculately trimmed Westringia and Ficus topiaries create focal points and lead the eye to the borrowed scenery of the lagoon beyond. Her garden offers a friendly and welcoming heaven to nature’s creatures: the 5 resident cats are not allowed in this part of the property, so the birds are safe when visiting the large bird table which offers fruit and seeds to passing visitors. Quirky elements in the garden such as the solar-powered butterflies are a constant source of interest and entertainment for young and old.
The ‘dead’ wall bordering the driveway got a facelift when Jenny attached some trellises. Bromeliads, & airplants (Tillandsia spp.) were carefully attached to the trellises and it’s hard to believe that these living walls are only a few months old. One can only image how exquisite it will look in a few years time.
The verge is a mixture of hardy plants, some indigenous, some exotic. The choice of plants was determined by their hardiness; they have to cope with windy conditions and salty air currents. This effective windbreak works well as the garden near the house is protected and thriving, where self seeded annuals are popping up between pavers and plants.
Jenny’s hard work has paid off, and with the help of her Malawian gardener she has created a garden that she and Roy can enjoy and be proud off.
~ Jenny Raymond is a member of Gardening at Leisure
~ Photos and text by Esther Townsend