WORKING WITH RUGGED BEAUTY
Better Homes & Gardens Australia|February 2022
Don’t let nature’s hurdles hold you back – you can work with, and even exploit, your garden’s negatives to transform them into positives!

1 Terrace a steep slope to create level garden rooms, as well as gentle rises you can plant out with shrubs and vibrant annuals such as purple and scarlet cinerarias. All of the rocks used in the wall here were excavated from the garden.

2 An ideal rockery plant, the sweetscented, colourful wallflower often grows out of crevices.

ABOUT THE GARDEN

The almost half-hectare of gardens at Tasmania’s historic Ship Inn in Stanley are on an isthmus almost 7km out to sea and nestled under the shadow of The Nut, the remnant of an ancient volcanic plug. In winter the winds off Bass Strait can be brutal, but the high rainfall is a benefit. A standout feature is the stone terraces, walls and paths, made from rocks found in the grounds by the boutique hotel’s co-owner and expert stonemason, Alistair Houston.

3 The pride of Madeira’s purple panicles of flowers explode in spring, towering up to 3m. As well as being stunning to look at, the plant is adaptable to a range of weather types and conditions found in coastal spots, such as salt air, wind and rocky soils.

4 Your stone walls and stepping stones can be irregular and uneven when built along rustic paths that are separate from formal areas.

5 Keep old trees or plant new ones on a steep slope – they’re very important for stopping erosion. And, if the opportunity arises, take full advantage of the chance to create a garden in a unique space, such as on the flat roof of this sturdy stone cottage.

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