Wednesday, September 11, 2013

From the Outside to the Inside Back Outside Again - Day 2

This entire block of land is utilized inch by inch to allow nature to shape it's way.  As a gardener, interested in sharing the importance of each of us getting our hands in the soil, my focus is around the plants, before the house.  However, in order for you to get a proper understanding of just how things work around here, I've done my best to walk you through as if we're on a tour together.

Welcome inside...


Just off the road is the welcome mat.  It's here that the adventure really begins.  The lower fifth of the Java black bamboo stands triumphantly with flowering plants (Zanzibar Gem) and Queensland natives (Dicksonia antarctica) nestled comfortably below.



In the above image, we can see the front garden from the perspective of the central courtyard; welcome to my favorite part.  The palm frond is hiding (sort of) what you can see below.  Hanging baskets house Epidendrum crucifix (orchids) with Amazon Lily and Silver Lady building up under the floor (window length seat) above.


Stepping back a bit we see the central courtyard from a child's perspective, which is sometimes the best view.


Head down the stairs and suddenly the house above starts to disappear.  Along the stairs and wall are Monstera deliciosa, native rainforest ferns, and climbing fig.



Down below we find Kahili Ginger, Bat Flower (unfortunately not blooming), and Hoya australis slowly making its way up the wall.


They're here and they're there, the plants really are everywhere.  The design of these gardens allows for the widest array of places to plant in.  With the help of Steven Clegg Design this gardener has been able to follow the architects request for the landscape to surround the building.


From my understanding, this central courtyard also surrounds the natural habitat of some friendly lizards (which happen to have blue tongues).  It's not rare to see these guys roaming around, building small cairns for their own natural playground.




above: with the canopy of the Beehive Ginger is Mysore trumpetvine.


The piney looking tree just reaching it's head above the trumpetvine is a dinosaur, literally.  In 1994 near the Blue Mountains northwest of Sydney, an adventurous field officer was exploring a steep gorge near Lithgow when he noticed a coniferous tree unlike any he had seen before.  After closer examination, the discovering of the 200 million year old Wollemi Pine was declared and luckily this critically endangered species has found a safe haven in this urban sanctuary.


As you can see, this garden is not only the central courtyard of the house but the spiritual core of the entire property.  With plants old and new, small and big (this Wollemi Pine will tower over the house one day, competing with the Java black bamboo), nature finds itself at peace in this soil.


below: Silver Lady basking in the heat of the day




After this set of images, I hope you understand the meaning behind the title.  Although we made it within the walls of the house in this post, we still find ourselves juxtaposed between plants and building, inside and outside.  I'll leave you with a view from the roof.  From up above we start to gain an understanding of just how well stitched this garden is to the core of the Z House.

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Add More Green by Nick Kovaleski is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.