Create an Australian Native garden that allowed a play area for children and privacy from neighbouring properties

Landscape Design Western Suburbs Perth


I spoke with Felicity and Justin on site, and we discussed the large front garden and the area at the back around a lap pool with an elevated limestone retaining wall. Firstly, they wanted a garden at the front which separated them from their neighbours and the street. There was no real fenceline on either the west or east side of the property. They also wanted a garden that fitted with the native flora of a large overhanging, peppermint tree on a neighbour’s property.

Secondly, they wanted a large, grassed area for their two young children to play in.

Thirdly, some planting was needed at the rear to soften the limestone retaining wall around the pool and predominant colorbond fencing.




The largest area of the landscape was the front yard, that included an enormous setback of the house from the verge. This required the lawn for kids to play had to be at the front of the house but also enabled some privacy and safety from the street.There were no boundary fences on either side making the space feel open and vulnerable.

The rear contained a lap pool, a small patch of grass with overgrown Bronze cottonwood ‘hibiscus tleaceus ‘ubra’ flanking the pool in an ‘L’ shape. It was messy and the hibiscus dropped a lot of flowers in the pool. Additionally, the cream colorbond surrounding fencing dominated the area.


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After discussion and presenting two preliminary designs, one a rectilinear proposal for a rectangular lawn and the other with a circular lawn we all favoured the circular design and HLD commenced sourcing sub-contractor quotes for the various elements of the installation.

To provide privacy and interest around the lawn a gentle sloping bank was created on the street side. The feeling of being exposed to the street was minimised for kids on the large lawn with a visual plant barrier being effectively used with native rosemary and long grasses providing height. On both boundaries at the front Grevillea olivaceae was chosen as a substitute to a fence as it’s fast growing and can handle the salt laden winds, (the site in City Beach was less than a kilometre from the beach).

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Plant selection as with most jobs was crucial. Groundcovers at the front were a combination of myoporum and prostrate grevilleas, contrasted with the verticality of juncus, dianella’s and kangaroo paws. Three eucalyptus torquata (Coral Gums) were planted to provide shade when sitting around the lawn.

Exotics that featured in the garden were three large 200 litre advanced stock of ornamental pears in front garden bed on the north facing front facade of the house to provide warmth and light in winter and shade and cooling in summer. This stock, along with a large transplanted poinciana were brought in with a hiab.

At the rear to soften the limestone and colorbond fencing and provide interest at night we chose a series of “luscious” trees, underplanted with snake vine which cascades over the limestone retaining walls. We also planted star jasmine on horizontal wires to provide green walls outside of the pool area over the existing colorbond fencing.

The garden features

A large cicular lawn area of palmetto soft leaf buffalo.

Groundcovers of myoporum, prostrate grevilleas and pigface. 

Hedging plants Grevilea olivaceae

A grove of grevillea’s featuring, ‘Spirit of Anzac’ and “Scarlet Moon’ from the Kings Park cultivar series that flower all year round.

Native rosemaries clipped into balls.

Drifts of ‘Big Red’ and and ‘Yellow Gem’ kangaroo paws, the most disease tolerant varieties.

Juncus Pallidus and Dianella ‘revelation’ – lower manintenance than than most other dianella varieties.

A series of Tristanopsis laurina ‘Luscious’ trees for their interesting bark, low maintenance and hardiness around the pool.

Three Coral gums to provide areas of shade around the lawn.

The inclusion of some exotic species in this predominantly Australian native garden.

Three mature ornamental pears

One large Poinciana (Delonix regiona) tree

Seven Ornamental Olive trees to continue the western boundary of Grevillea olivaceae

Star Jasmine planted to create cooling green walls at the rear.

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