Set out on 4Ha, this garden could be the project of a lifetime. It was like a dream come true for us, and we worked as part of a large team on this project.
Please click or tap on photos for enlargements.
The plan incorporated rivers, a dam, a wetland system (which purifies water from the Jukskei River), as well as a large grass area, veld grasses, an organic sculpture, a children’s play area with “underground hobbit houses,” a large rose garden, a jetty, and a vegetable and herb garden.
An owl release program was started on the property, and several bat boxes were installed to create a safe environment for breeding of bats.
This garden is right on the banks of the Hartebeespoort Dam. It has been featured on one of Keith Kirsten’s TV shows, as well as in South African Garden and Home.
We created different ‘garden rooms’ on different levels.
It is not entirely indigenous, but all the trees are indigenous, as well as most of the shrubs, perennials and groundcovers.
We prefer a balance between exotic and indigenous, as this usually creates the best effect, as well as attracting birds, butterflies and bees to the garden – and in this case, leguans!
A Mabalingwe game farm
It was important to create a defined line between what would be perceived as the lodge’s garden, and the natural veldt grass. We therefore created a circle wrapping from the boma (fireplace) right around the house to the garages on the other side.
We used recycled crushed tar to create the road surface, which gives a lovely soft crunch when you walk on it.
When choosing the plants, we had to take into account the wild animals such as porcupine, kudu, blesbuck etc, and they have eaten a lot of what was planted, especially because of drought. Many of the plants have survived though, and as happens in nature, the approach is that an ecosystem will develop and equilibrium will be established.
The design is strong enough to always hold the site together.