THE ARTISTS’ GARDEN
Textural plantings and warm tones have been added to this corner development to soften its brand-new feel.
A city courtyard has a softening makeover with new plantings and touches of whimsy.
KATE HERD’S COURTYARD design for artists Christine and Chris was always going to have to be one “out of the box”. As a country couple that were swapping rural idyll for a contemporary city pad in Alphington, Vic, the original planting by the developers was way too square – literally with hedges and fences confining the courtyard.
Kate opened up the design, removing some hedges and instead incorporating textural plantings like natives and succulents, and cleverly incorporating the corner block’s nature strip. To add further dimensions, views have been opened out wherever possible, making the borrowed landscape a valuable part of this contemporary courtyard.
It’s now a rich and varied space, with slate crazy paving rich in fossils meandering through it, mimicking the nearby Yarra River, whose upper reaches are just down the hill. Its wonderfully eclectic pot collection, which includes old laundry coppers, barbed-wire fencing and wicker baskets, creates stunning vignettes, and whimsical touches like an outdoor painting of a clothesline and a hanging wall frieze add interest to the walls and gate.
“I love that our small space has become a changing landscape.”
Slats nice Timber slatted furniture adds a sense of space.
Deep purple The rich-toned foliage of aeonium creates year-round colour.
Foliage front Natives were planted in the nature strip.
On the up
The wandering tendrils of the Virginia creeper.