Australians love the outdoors, in particular the front porch or back patio of their very own home.
But designing a garden from scratch can seem a little overwhelming, which is why it’s useful to have a landscape designer on your side to help with a concept plan, plant selection, lighting, materials and finishes. They have the landscape design knowledge to make the outdoors of your home just as beautiful as the indoors.
Here are just a few examples of timeless styles that might inspire your landscape design choices.
Living coastally has its own unique set of challenges, especially with the selections of plants that will be sustainable throughout the year. Sandy soils, saline air and strong winds all have to be accounted for – so look to what survives well naturally on the shoreline.
We’re talking succulents, grasses and palms to create that coastal escape feel. And you don’t need to live by the beach to utilise these types of flora; coastal ground-cover plants are an excellent choice for reducing water-usage (plus they tolerate a bit of neglect). Think Dichondra, Grevillias and succulent varieties such as Pig Face or Senecio.
Even rosemary is a hardy hedge option once it settles in. Plus, it’s right there to make a marinade for some lamb cutlets on the barbie out the back.
A heads up if you’re considering palm trees, don’t expect bananas or dates – these are dioecious (needing a male and female) and Perth is probably too low a latitude. Smaller options such as Golden cane palm or Australian fan palm offer nice shade, colour and that resort feel. Larger palms (like those on Sunset Blvd) are also purely ornamental – but no sweeping is required.
Of course, a custom home with palms could do well with a kidney-shaped pool, a landscape design feature first brought to popularity by Donnell Garden in California. Designed by landscape architect Thomas Church in 1948, fun fact: it’s also widely believed to be the origin of the world’s first skate bowl.
If you’re thinking fences, metals are a corrosion/rust-stain risk. Look to glass walls around pools, limestone or railway sleepers to edge your property and put in retaining walls for small gardens.
If you dream of stepping out the back to pick sun-ripened cherry tomatoes and basil to add to your woodfired pizza (with a self-made sourdough base, of course), consider how to landscape design your garden for seasonal edibles.
You’ll also want to think about entertaining, where could you put a pizza oven, outdoor kitchen/bar, and maybe the big sinks for cleaning up, home-brewing, or even keeping seedlings moist.
Permaculture is having a revival, and we’ve learned the lessons from the ‘70s how to do it right. It’s worth mapping out what parts of your property get sun and shade across the seasons, where might be suitable to plant vegetables or shading trees.
It’s not just about what you can chow-down on though. Many edible plants require pollinators, so adding bee-friendly flowering plants won’t just to make the place look pretty – it might help you grow some Royal Show prize-winning veg.
Perth has relatively sand soils in the northern suburbs and the further away you get from the Swan and its tributaries. If you’re building up from a yellow-sand pad of a new home, often raised beds are the most suitable option for ‘kitchen garden’ landscape design. These might be a commercial make, recycled wicking bed, or wall-retained garden filled with nourishing, organic-rich soil.
Country Manor Garden
Lawns, hedges and winding paths… if you’re looking to bring a touch of elegance from ‘the continent’, it’s all about balance between formal design and informal.
Country gardens blend the elements of natural curves with symmetry, almost cottage-style planting beds. You might choose clipped hedges behind, with natural plantings that look a little wild. Here, moss between the pavers doesn’t look out of place.
A manor house historically formed the administrative centre of a country manor, a territorial organisation in the feudal system in Europe. Opulence was the norm inside, while outside plants were often grown for fruit or flowers (think the velvety lavender fields of Provance).
For colour, one might consider Canna Lilies. Climbers, creepers, vines and trellises bring height variance to the space, with smaller ornamental trees and hedges framing pathways.
Landscape design for Perth Native Gardens
Australia is home to unique species found nowhere else in the world – and they’ll grow well in your garden, because they’ve survived here for millions of years. Utilising these, including Australian edibles, helps support native wildlife and ecosystems, bringing lively bursts of colour during wildflower season and year-round.
If you’d like to know more about what species might work in your area, and play well together, get inspired by plantlifebalance.com.au The App was created by Hort Innovation, a not-for-profit research and development corporation for Australian horticulture.
Of course, if you build with us Stannard Homes, right now you’ll enjoy an exclusive Sam De Vries landscaping offer to create beautiful outdoor spaces designed to enhance your lifestyle.
The landscaping pack includes:
- Onsite personal consultation to explore ideas.
- Detailed landscape concept plan with planting, lighting and styling recommendations.
- 3D fly-through video to let you visualise the end result.
- Generous contribution to put towards landscape construction.