After collaborating for several years with Stephen Akehurst and his partner Adrian Cannata, I’ve designed the garden for their property in the country Victoria. Both Stephen and Adrian are very much in love with Italy, and in particular with the Lago di Como area. That’s why, when they asked me to design their garden they wanted me to re create the atmosphere of the gardens around Como: because of the lake, the weather is never too cold and it’s possible to grow a broad range of plants: from Palms to Camellias, from Azaleas and Rhododendrons to Mediterranean plants.
The inspiration for Stephen and Adrian’s garden was Villa Carlotta near Como where a large variety of plants is displayed; like in a botanic garden I created several ‘scenes’. In the front garden, next to the house, I planted several dwarf conifers with Ligularia japonica and Asparagus ‘Meyeri’. The rest of the space is planted with a selection of Azaleas, Rhododendron, Camellias and Japanese maples that suit the area.
Next to the garage where Stephen and Adrian collect their old cars I planted a meadow with Miscanthus gracillimus and transmorrissoniensis, Cotaderia selloana ‘Aureolineata’ (sterile), Rhus typhina and Canna. Next to the pool area that is surrounded by existing trees, it was the perfect spot for planting a selection of Helleborous and Anemone ‘Honoring Jobert’, along with several Cornus.