The Gardener
The Long Garden Image Credit: The Gardener
The Long Garden Image Credit: The Gardener

The Long Garden

We create gardens to nourish our human spirits and satisfy our senses.

Izolda Van Der Merwe

When Tara Forster decided to return home to South Africa from New Zealand she chose Bedford as her destination, as it resembled her image of Africa. Here mountainous landscapes are carpeted with fields of grasses and succulents, providing shelter for many wildlife and bird species. The biodiversity of the area encapsulated her idea of the perfect garden, and with inspiration from the famous Dutch garden designer Piet Oudolf and renowned South African garden designer and good friend Franschesca Watson, she set out to create her own haven.

Our first view of the garden is actually of an old corrugated building, framed by jasmine. Blue and white Portuguese-style tiles complement the tin building, hinting at the age of Bedford and its rich history.

The main garden can be viewed as three different areas. The upper area consists of a stone stoep overlooking the long garden as well as five sunken ponds, arranged in a formal manner and with indigenous blue water lilies growing in each. Tara tells us that the maintenance is very low on these ponds as she has mosquito fish in them and the main diet of the fish is mosquito larvae, thus creatin


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