9 Magnificent Gardens That Amazed Us This Year

Over the past year, there have been 9 stand out gardens on the journal that our readers just get enough of. These gardens will delight you with a little escapism, inspiration and practical guidance for your own green space.

From a wild cottage garden on a Danish island, to a tropical villa garden in New Plymouth. A 5-acre garden in Canterbury, to a petite retreat garden in South Melbourne — these were the journal’s best-loved gardens of 2022….

Sigridsminde: A Danish “Wild” Cottage Garden

Camilla Jørvad is a mother, photographer and passionate gardener based on the stunning Danish island of Ærø. Taking up gardening has taught her many lessons about life, health, harmony and the restoration of our precious planet.

We loved Camilla’s garden so much, it spans across two features:

— How to: Create a Wild “Cottage” Garden — Sigridsminde

In this article, Camilla shares her tips and suggestions for creating a wild cottage garden, like the one she tends to at Sigridsminde – her family’s hobby farm on a small Danish island, Ærø.

Read the full story here.

— Chaos & Restoration — Camilla Jørvad

In this piece, Camilla shares with us her experience of the intertwining of gardening and the impact it’s had on her mental and physical health. As well as her family’s journey into creating a pocket of the world where all nature thrives.

Read the full story here.

At The End of The Lane — Kōtare Estate

Kōtare Estate lies at the very end of Lane Road in Havelock Road. Cyprus pillars lining the driveway creak in the soft spring breeze, framing a spectacular close-up view of Te Mata Peak. Panning across past aged trees is a never-ending vista of Hawke’s Bay. Although only a stone’s throw from the heart of the village, its setting provides a blissful disconnection from the rush of life, coupling perfectly with the vision Pip and Mathias Robbie-Gödert had to share their home with others.

Read the full story here.

Through the seasons in Kate Williams’ Garden

Kate Williams, of The After-hours Stylist, lives with her family on a lifestyle block in Canterbury, where she is kept busy with establishing, expanding and looking after her extensive 5 acre garden.

Kate’s garden is a mix of both a floral cottage garden and a structured, more formal garden. Initially, Kate engaged a landscape designer to set out the vast garden’s footprint. She and her family then filled the garden with their favourite plants, and continue to do so with her propagation and seed harvesting techniques. Despite the scale of the garden, the goal of this planting is to keep it as easy care as possible.

Read the full story here.



New Plymouth Villa Garden with Modern Tropical Twist

For this central New Plymouth property local landscape designers PARKER developed a contemporary sub tropical garden to compliment the home’s recent renovation.

A classic pattern of planting and design was utilised for the front entrance, while out in the backyard a large contemporary deck was added to make the most of the outdoor living. This also included a sunken fire pit for those cooler nights.

Read the full story here.

Wild & Woolly in Waikanae — Riverbank 1965

Until this property’s recent sale, Tara Morton and Nick Walbridge were the proud owners of Waikanae’s mid-century modernist retreat — Riverbank 1965. Riverbank is a renovated architectural gem, originally built in the mid 1960s in a California ranch-style. The property consists of 1.5 acres of secluded trees and landscaping, with direct access to the Waikanae River.

We talked to Tara and Nick about how they stumbled upon the property, and all about its garden and surrounds.

Read the full story here.


South Melbourne Retreat

Whoever said bigger is better certainly hasn’t visited this South Melbourne retreat. In this garden, Ian Barker Gardens were tasked with developing a peaceful, all enveloping garden that also provided privacy and sun protection for this Melbourne home.

Read the full story here.



A Bug’s Life — Tauranga’s Urban Insect Haven

Heather Loughlin’s small city garden in Matua, Tauranga is an ever-changing seasonal woodland. Deciduous trees bring drama and colour with the changing seasons, while the curling white bark of Jacquemontii birch trees is stunning by day, and glows in the moonlight at night. The canopy these trees provide creates a microclimate for many mass-planted shade loving plants below.

Read the full story here.


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When Japanese, contemporary and ‘cottage garden’ influences collide

Horticulturist and landscape designer, Christopher Owen, of Fieldwork is the creative mind behind this Inner West Sydney garden. Located in the gentrified neighbourhood of Haberfield, the family of this home required only one thing — a space for the children and dog to play.

The design starts with a “horticultural riot” happening in the roadside garden, countered with a restful side passageway. The internal courtyard is a space for reflection, accompanied by a more contemporary back garden with room for the family to spread out.

Read the full story here.



Deadly Ponies Store — Jared Lockhart Design

In Ponsonby, Auckland you’ll find the flagship boutique of internationally renowned leather accessories brand, Deadly Ponies. When the brand took over the space, the back of the building was unloved and occupied by a dilapidated lean-to. Owners, Liam Bowden and Steven Boyd, called in landscape designer Jared Lockhart to help.

Jared’s brief was to make the area beautiful and wild, with a central area to use for seating and events. Jared very quickly formed a vision: Naturalistic and rambling.

Read the full story here.