Home Beautiful - - DESIGN FILE -

Lo­ca­tion: Toowoomba, Queens­land.

Who lives here? Tim and Robyn, own­ers of a bou­tique build­ing com­pany spe­cial­is­ing in the ren­o­va­tion of pe­riod homes.

Why the reno? “There was no fenc­ing, pri­vacy or birds,” says

Robyn of the back­yard, pre-makeover. “Neigh­bours called it the fish­bowl house when we moved in. There was no hid­ing any­thing!”

The works: Sim­ple block walls were in­stalled around the prop­erty, with climb­ing plants dug in and trained to cover them, help­ing to de­fine new gar­den ‘rooms’ around the space and cre­ate a sense of pri­vacy. A glass pool fence re­placed old-fash­ioned rail­ings, new pavers and deck­ing were put in place, and the dated pool cop­ing was changed to bring the zone thor­oughly into the now. A per­gola was added be­side the cov­ered out­door area, along with new turf, plants and a se­lec­tion of ma­ture trees.

Ma­jor changes: The unimag­i­na­tive space has been trans­formed into a ver­dant and pri­vate sanc­tu­ary per­fect for long sum­mer days by the pool, thanks to clever plant­ings, cos­metic changes to ex­ist­ing fea­tures and the smart use of ac­ces­sories. With pool­side din­ing and an out­door lounge area be­side a canopy of fra­grant wis­te­ria, the cou­ple is also spoilt for choice when en­ter­tain­ing al­fresco.

Lessons learned: Make water a pri­or­ity in your plan­ning. “We should have dug in a large un­der­ground tank,” says Tim. “There was a small one here, but you can never have too much water.”

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