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This naturalistic eco-pool & wetland garden features large sandstone rocks forming the pool steps, pathways and resting points. Salvaged from a local dumpsite, the largest of these rocks sits on the pool floor weighing 6.8 tons. Over several months, all the rocks were painstakingly positioned into a unified composition using a crane, slings and the Japanese art of wedging rocks.
The crystal clear water is filtered through beds of lilies and shallow reed plantings while a boardwalk of sustainable bamboo decking ‘floats’ across the water linking the home to its idyllic landscape.
Originally designed as their family garden, the client returned 8 years later whilst converting their Villa into a luxury boutique hotel. Reimagining this garden as one to service primarily international travellers proved a beautiful challenge. An ongoing relationship is maintained as parts of the garden develop to provide fresh produce for the hotel kitchen.
The ultimate family garden for a young, health conscious, active couple with three busy toddlers. The client dreamed of a garden that serviced all their recreational needs and provided an abundance of organic fruits and vegetables for their kitchen. With an awkward shaped property that sat on a steep slope, the design has divided the landscape heavily with each area serving a distinctive purpose and designed to be as engaging as possible for children. The wild wooded play garden for example is accessed from the veggie garden via a rocky ‘mountain climb’ where the children can stop on stone perches to pick apples and guavas. Heavily aromatic foliage overhangs the rocky path so as they brush against the vegetation, they are able to experience the wonderful fragrances of our indigenous Pelargonium and Buchu varieties.
Upper Orange Street
Sensitively designed for the colonial heritage home is surrounds, this garden provides a lush, relaxed setting for a family who love to entertain outdoors. With the home painted in the iconic ‘Mount Nelson Pink’, plantings were designed for textural interest rather than competitive colour and a muted tonal palette of fresh green, white and silver was employed throughout. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
A sanctuary for a contemporary apartment, this small urban garden features an elegant path of white stone chip snaking between a grove of existing Leopard trees. As all materials arrived via a pulley to the 4th floor balcony, concrete cube seats were cast in situ and their graphic form is strongly juxtaposed by a soft textural ‘meadow’ of grasses, ferns and tiny flowers.
A fragrant garden of ‘wild’, indigenous plants connects this ultra contemporary home to the nature reserve abutting the property. To preserve oxygen flow to the historic oak trees on the site, a special slatted driveway was designed and laid to create a soft, feathered effect against the masculine lines of the architecture. The khatam star water-feature references the family’s rich Islamic heritage and sits against a sheer embankment retained by large boulders exhumed whilst digging the home’s platform and foundations. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
Keeping the structure of this semi-rural garden clean and simple allowed for a planting scheme which by contrast is loose and romantic. A sweep of stylized meadow frames the immaculate sunken lawn while on the other side of the house, the design becomes entirely wild in character as the garden leads to a small stream defining the boundary with the Groot Constantia vineyards. This part of the garden is enjoyed from the home’s wine cellar and a fire pit reaching into the space extends the entertainment options from this level. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
Sitting opposite the Clifton Beaches along Cape Town’s popular Victoria Road, this glamorous coastal garden is carved from the side of a granite cliff. Installed simultaneously to the construction of the home, and in the height of tourist season, this was an exceedingly difficult garden to execute. Making the most of such a steeply sloping site, the garden journey from street level up to the house is all-important. The design features a striking stairway of floated concrete slabs and a collection of bronze & glass sculpture. At the back of the house a small vertical garden nestled into the granite wall of the shower garden creates a beautifully intimate space in contrast to the home’s expansive vistas across the Atlantic ocean. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
This garden was designed for a very large family with young and older children and a mum strongly attached to the blousy romantic gardens she visits regularly in England. The expansive garden is terraced to provide a diverse range of experiences including a large formal lawn and water feature, relaxed orchard of fruit trees, a wild river garden and an avenue of blossoming plums. The design plays between formality and informality with full, feminine planting throughout.
In a busy part of the city, this eclectic, colonial garden is designed to provide peace, refuge and a sense of whimsy for its heritage home & artful owner. The reuse of a moss covered fountain and the import of mature trees created a garden with a sense of establishment that belies its age. Many hours were spent scouring the tree farms for screening and unique focal trees which include a light Pride-of-India, uniquely forked Royal Palm and a grand old Coral Tree. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
Four years in the making, this garden grew from a single to a double plot requiring some clever design solutions and plenty of earth-shaping to create a unified landscape. Taking inspiration from the Georgian style architecture, this garden is divided into a series of ‘outdoor rooms’ including a formal rose garden, immaculate lawn terrace and forest walk. In the forest garden a path of granite and timber winds through a beautiful collection of camellias, azaleas, fucias and ferns. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
St John's Estate
With a house that extends to its boundaries over four levels, this garden exists in a carefully designed series of roof gardens, planted terraces and small courtyards. With almost no access to natural ground, small rooted Frangipani trees and granite boulders were craned in to give the garden a lush, verdant feel and to balance and soften the architecture. A tiny lawn is planted on the roof of the guest wing below and provides breathing space in this built up part of the city. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
This gracious property on De Goedehoop Estate required a design that responded to the scale of the large Cape-Style manor and pine forest that surround it. The Cape vernacular informed the planting palettes which are simple and unfussy. As with all properties abutting natural landscape, the transition from domestic to wild garden required particular attention. On the upper terrace tufted grass was sown to create a shaggy green carpet which bleeds into the wooded areas while on the lower terrace, a new gate was built and quickly vegetated with Cape Ivy to gently catch the eye and draw one to the ‘enchanted forest’. House by: Wynand Wilsenach Architects.
The challenge of this design was to create a usable, attractive garden from a steeply sloped triangular piece of land. The design solution was found in forming three platforms of lawn on different levels, which connect and respond to the sinuous, curved shapes of the architecture, leading the eye to the magnificent view of Table Mountain. Separating these lawns are bands of indigenous shrubbery selected to attract birds and provide interest throughout the seasons.
Two family homes share one large garden in this uniquely terraced site. With one house sitting much higher than the other, the challenge was to create a landscape that felt connected and accessible to each dwelling. To hero the mountain views fussy landscaping details were avoided and close attention paid to balancing the dramatic scale in the proportions of the garden layout. The exceptional vitality of this garden is due to an emphasis on introducing microbial life to the soil through the installation process.
The loving art of hand drawn plans is used to produce a scaled concept plan for every garden by Carrie Latimer. These plans are presented along with a detailed image presentation and possible sketches to provide clients a clear vision of the proposed design.