A garden must have different areas, says Michael. “I can’t stand the word ‘garden rooms’. Rather call them alcoves or garden recesses, or an area of contentment.
“This garden consists of various areas with different types of vegetation. The most recent addition is a wild garden or grassland: three hectares of indigenous grasses and exotic bulbs. We also have an aloe garden and a bee garden. I’m now working on an area dedicated to cycads.”
Michael says he draws inspiration from his thousands of gardening books. “The garden is more than I ever imagined it would be. It gets better all the time. I’m impulsive, I experiment a lot and I’m prepared for the failures and the successes.
“There’s so much to see in my garden; you can spend the entire day here. My dream is that South Africa will become a part of global garden tourism. There’s a large number of people who tour gardens around the world.”
Birding enthusiasts also like to visit Michael’s garden to view its wide variety of resident birds. “It’s probably the largest private garden in the country,” says Michael proudly. “It’s going to become world famous.”
The garden has more than 1 500 roses in a variety of colours – but not white. “I’m not a fan of white,” says Michael.