Top ten great things about winter in your garden

1. Winter gives you a break. Most plants and grass grow slower or are dormant in winter dropping the time needed to maintain your garden.
2. Bare rooted fruit trees and roses. You can get so many fruit trees and roses during winter that are nearly half the price of rest of the year. While these plants are dormant they can be sold without pots so they’re cheaper for nurseries and cheaper for you.
3. No need to water. Thanks to all the rain the garden hose can sit quietly in the corner and your water bills can take a break. If you are organised enough to have a watertank it should be getting pretty full too.
4. Lots of light during the day (when the sun is out anyway). As all the deciduous trees have shed their leaves for the winter lots more of the suns rays can make it into your garden. So whenever the sun does come out you can soak up the rays and get that hit of fresh air after being cooped up inside.
5. Time to plan. Winter is a great time to begin planning any garden renovations you have in mind. While the weather is cold and the days are short for big construction jobs outside you can get into the books or onto the web to scour for ideas to make your outdoor space unique. Now is also a great time to speak to a expert and get some advice to get your project underway before everyone else is getting out the drawing board in a few months.
6. Winter flowers. While lots of plants are taking a rest many are in show off mode in winter. Plants like Hardenbergias, Lavender, Magnolias, Daffodils, Daphne and many eucalypts look amazing at this time of year adding some colour to the grey days.
7. Snowscapes. If you happen to live in a colder area snow can transform a garden into a magical place. The soft layering of white we get in Australia can has a stunning effect on the landacape. Without the huge snow drifts of many parts of the world, our snow landscapes are often more accessible.
8. Winter vegetables. Broccoli, leeks, carrots and spinach all grow in the colder months, making for some tasty winter dinners.
9. Mud. When winter rain meets dusty ground we get mud.  Lovely, lovely mud. One of life’s great joys is watching the kids (and big kids) get out and about in gumboots and jump about making a huge mess. Pepper pig eat your heart out.
10. Contrast. Sometimes you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone. Sitting on some warm grass or sipping a cold drink on your deck on a long summer evening can seem a million miles away from icy windscreens and inside out umbrellas of July. But getting out into some spring sunshine with birds singing and fruit trees blossoming can be really uplifting and is just that much better after being stuck inside on cold wet days for a couple weeks.



If you would like some more information about what you can make the most of winter in the garden or to get your spring garden plan underway feel free to contact us below.


Geelong Laneways

Central Geelong is an amazing place waiting to happen. While the economic identity of the city is undergoing a significant upheaval, Geelong’s urban landscape echoes the past and calls out to a new identity for the city.


Blessed with an extensive and diverse network of laneways the inner city is a place that you can find the essence of Geelong as a city. While we all can enjoy the convenience of the large shopping malls dotted throughout greater Geelong region, with crisp white walls and air-conditioning, there is something a bit lifeless and homogenised about a shopping mall. Getting out and walking about the streets and laneways of inner Geelong is a great way to get to know the city in time and place. I took some photos on a recent walk through inner Geelong to record the details of the journey.

Geelong Laneways Details

Geelong Laneways spaces

I set out to take the scenic route and explore the inner workings of the city, the spaces between the buildings. Throughout this walk I found a highly urban landscape full of rich texture, history, art and space, not usually associated with a city which prides itself on its parks, open space and beaches. These elements all provide a layered experience of the city; signs for businesses long gone, doorways and thresholds worn with a hundred years of footsteps adjoin modern utilitarian components of the city. Complex urban landscapes like inner Geelong lend themselves easily to the telling of stories, real or imagined, about the lives lived amongst these places.


Geelong Laneways art

Geelong Laneways texture

The nice neat façades on the main street frontages give no indication to the eclectic nature of the laneways behind. These are the stripped back spaces left over when buildings are being designed. These spaces are often more intriguing places in a city and have a level of honesty often lacking in the more public veneer of the city. Designers sometimes try too hard to impose new and fresh spaces that can take years to gain a sense of character and place for their inhabitants. By slowing down and having a fresh look at old surroundings we may find the beginnings of captivating spaces just waiting to happen.

SAM_2363 - Copy

If you think you might have an intriguing outdoor space waiting to happen feel free to contact us to find out how we can help you get the most out of your garden.

Gibbs Sculpture Park, New Zealand

In April this year I attended the International Federation of Landscape Architects conference in Auckland New Zealand. As part of the conference I took part in a tour of the Gibbs Sculpture Park, an hour north of Auckland. The sculpture park ( ) was set up by New Zealand businessman Alan Gibbs over twenty years ago and contains large sculptural works by some of the world’s leading artists, including Richard Serra, Andy Goldsworthy, Anish Kapoor, Sol LeWitt and Maya Lin. The sculpture park is an amazing experience, the scale of the works and how they interact with the landscape is breathtaking. The green rolling hills and beautiful Kaipara Harbour would have been enough to make for a great days walk. However the artworks are the scene stealers. Below are some pictures I took of my favourite sculptures.



Te Tuhirangi Contour – Richard Serra


Untitled (Red Square/Black Square) – Richard Thompson


The greenness of the grass and blue sky were an attraction in themselves.


Red Cloud Confrontation in Landscape – Leon van den Eijkel


Dismemberment, Site 1 – Anish Kapoor


Arches – Andy Goldsworthy


88.5° ARC x 8 – Bernar Venet

Even if you don’t have 1000 acres on the edge of the largest bay in the southern hemisphere art and sculpture can provide inspiration in your garden. For more information about how art can add value and beauty to your garden contact us here.