Early summer 2020
When the E. family called me, they had been living in their newly built home for a year. The garden consisted of three beautiful trees and a well-kept lawn - 'so that there is at least something there and it no longer looks like a building site'.
But their vision for the garden looked different. Cozy, somewhat sheltered, not quite so flat, with secret places for the children to hide and play and natural stone walls reminiscent of their English home. A wide band of native wild shrubs was also planned.
From manicured lawn to pollinator paradise
The unusual layout of the property created a large front garden in the south east corner, visible from all directions. Instead of fast-growing hedges and ecologically dead lawn, we decided to transform the space into a paradise for insects and small animals - a space that invites life. I used sunloving perennials and grasses in warm yellow, deep violet-blues and bright reds - colours that attract bees, butterflies and bumblebees and greet visitors and passers-by from afar.
Climate-friendly, low-maintenance and minimal watering
It was important to the family that the garden be low-maintenance and manageable even for beginner gardeners. As soon as the young plants had grown up and covered a large part of the soil, weeds hardly stood a chance. By then the perennials and shrubs also had deep enough roots to supply themselves with water. A layer of light-coloured gravel reflects the sun and reduces evaporation from the surface of the soil, therefore keeping the soil cool and moist.
The special thing about the plant selection: All perennials and grasses can be left standing in autumn meaning insects can lay their eggs in the dry hollow stalks or overwinter between the dry leaves protected from frost and snow. It also means the garden looks good all year round.