Betsy-Sue Clarke, Kew

108 Sackville Street, Kew (2016)

Open Date
12-13 Nov. 2016
Garden Entry

Note: This garden was opened in 2016

The owners’ eclectic art collection, yearning for a pizza oven and need for connection to green, informed the design of this beautiful and surprising garden wrapped around grey, brutalist architecture. With a pool acquired from the neighbour’s block and a soaring double storey concrete block wall ignorant of the surroundings, this house had no relationship to its odd shaped garden and could not be a home until it did. The brief was to retain the existing landscaping where possible and connect it to the house and itself somehow. A tiny courtyard accessed from the kitchen was the starting point and we began with a spectacular 4 metre high vertical garden, outdoor kitchen and lounge.

Stunning commissioned sculpture and art hold the disparate spaces together in playful  harmony, inspired by favourite elements of nature. The walled front garden nestles the north facing kitchen garden, surrounded by fruit and a place to catch the sun. A cascade of stone steps amongst swathes of Pratia invite exploration with bamboo and canopy offering restful views from the lounge on the narrow east side. Arriving at the kitchen courtyard, a massive  tree canopy sculpture offers shady lounging and frames the view to the main garden beyond.

Lively frescoed walls are a delightful discovery before being welcomed under the vast linked pergolas draped in hot pink Bougainvillea, Wisteria and Virginia creepers. The pool’s shady lounge deck is wrapped in tropical planting with a view through the generous dining area to the lawn and chicken villa beyond. With plenty of shade and interesting spaces to entice, this garden has finally become the lovely connected retreat so needed and in beautiful harmony with its owners.