Gravel & Grass Courtyard

The renovation of this 1930’s Tamboerskloof house created an enclosed courtyard with views of the mountain and Lion’s Head behind. While originally the courtyard consisted of a lawn with exotic, thirsty trees scattered around, he severe drought caused a rethink. After initially covering the ground with fine sandstone gravel to sort out the issue of fine dust blowing around, we then undertook sequential phases of planting in consultation with the owner to restore the feeling of a living landscape as the heart of the house. Initially a group of indigenous Wild Olives trees were planted around a deciduous White Stinkwood to create shade and vertical interest. Following this swathes of different grasses for texture & movement contrasted with groundcover succulents and indigenous bulbs for seasonal colour were added. The result is a close to zero-water garden arranged in a series of mini-rooms that is exceptionally low in maintenance and has resulted in an explosion of birdlife to everyone’s delight.