A SUBTLE INTERPLAY OF SCULPTURAL TERRACING AND LAYERED PLANTING PAINTS AN ARTFUL PICTURE IN THIS CAPE TOWN GARDEN
While landscaping trends come and go, the appeal of a stylish family garden remains timeless. add a rush of annuals and perennials that reverberate through the space and you have the perfect mix.
Visions of this dream destination occupied the owner’s mind well before the plans of their house were drawn up. ‘our home was never going to be just bricks and mortar, but intimately connected to the garden,’ she recalls.
Landscape designer carrie Latimer was called in to create a family-friendly garden that balanced structure and swaths of romantic planting. gracious, feminine and well-established, like the ones the owner often visits when in england.
as the property creeps along the Liesbeek river greenbelt, it has a natural west-to-east drop. carrie made sense of the slope by sculpting terraces that relate to the home’s architecture. ‘When the foundations were dug, a mammoth pile of boulders emerged. We split these and used them to create the low terrace walls throughout the garden,’ she explains.
The slight level changes – no terrace is 80cm higher than the one preceding it – gave the landscape designer scope to zone the garden into a series interconnecting rooms. ‘It was important that each terrace didn’t tell a different story, but that the narrative moved slowly and changed gently,’ explains carrie.
The design plays on the idea of various routes and crossings creating different journeys and destinations in the garden. From the orchard and meadow punctuated by a quaint greenhouse, paths open and invite one from one space to the next.
around the house, there’s a gentle balance between formal and relaxed. off the guest terrace, a peaceful, simple space is dominated by a large, existing oak tree and a display of
The kitchen courtyard is a quiet antechamber before the pièce de résistance – rose arches brimming with scented Rosa ‘comtesse Panarosa’, Rosa ‘Moonlight Panarosa’ and trails of star jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides).
Lining the main lawn terrace, ribbons of richly layered planting exude a sense of old-world charm, while order is imposed by a gravel pathway. Beyond lies the robinia tree-framed pool terrace.
‘The overall effect might be simple at a glance. But upon closer inspection, there is plenty to hold your attention, as details reveal themselves incrementally,’ explains carrie. serene yet evocative; just as the owner had wanted it.
While the garden boasts all the design clout one would expect from a landscaped space, for the owner it represents a treasure trove of memories and love.
‘Its charm lies in the echoes of every celebration, children’s laughter, games and parties,’ she notes.
Much to her pleasure, the riot of blooms throughout the garden cannot always be kept in check. It’s this sense of contained abundance that resonates most with her. ‘I think it prudent to have a garden plan, but not be a slave to it.’
More than anything, the garden gives expression to the owner’s love affair with plants. as a stylist, she often picks blousy flowers for her home. Bowls of fragrant roses, lopped-off blossom branches and long stems with pom-pom shaped viburnum are among her favourites. From the vegetable garden, posies of herbs and artichoke are picked for the kitchen.
every fresh picking is a reminder of a season well lived. ‘all you need to understand about life you will learn as a gardener. If you watch and listen carefully, it will tell you what it needs.’ Carrie Latimer 8 carrielatimer.co.za n