All Day I Dream in Gardens

Ben Hoyle is one of my favourite show garden designers so when I saw his name in the NZ Flower and Garden Show programme I was keen to see what he’d produced for the new Auckland event – and the judges and I agreed that it was pretty darn good.

Ben picked up a Gold medal and a Special Feature Award for ‘All Day I Dream in Gardens’ with its large and striking water feature.

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Ben Hoyle is a perennial garden show favourite with his innovative ideas and attention to detail. Photo: Sandra Simpson

From the Kapiti Coast, Ben and his team moved to west Auckland for a fortnight to create the garden which includes a bure-style seating area, a water feature made from coloured acrylic, a large pond (black water for better reflection), plus plantings large and small – from trees to bedding annuals and a mix of natives and exotics. The pond is faced in Coreten steel but the raised garden beds are finished in the woven hessian you can see to the left of Ben in the photo above.

The detail of the planting is magic. Every so often I realised the flower I was looking at was the same colour as one of the V-shaped pieces of the water feature – orange canna, deep-red sweet william, mauve-blue bedding echium, carmine lychnis, yellow geum …

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Verbascum and bedding echiums. Photo: Sandra Simpson

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Ptilotus Joey, an Australian native.  Photo: Sandra Simpson

Ben recently spotted Ptilotus Joey in his local (independent) garden centre and thought it would be the perfect addition so grabbed what they had.

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The sloping side of the bure is covered in tussock while the straight side is clad in large triangular tiles in shades of green. Photo: Sandra Simpson

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The bure interior includes kokedama balls. Photo: Sandra Simpson

Read more about kokedama in an earlier posting.

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