Dream Gardens ep 3 Mother Nature can be your best friend, but she can also be your worst enemy. Stewart and Sandra Hart lost their home, garden and wonderful memories in the devastating Black Saturday bush-fires of 2009.
Rather than face the painful process of rebuilding, the Harts bought a property in a bucolic, country valley an hour’s drive from Melbourne. In search of inspiration for the garden they visited Stonefields, the home of Paul Bangay, one of Australia’s most in demand designers. Blown away by its beauty and idyllic setting they’ve tasked Paul with the job of recreating his magic in their own back yard.
Dream Gardens ep 3
The design is grand and ambitious with a focus on opening up the garden to the valley beyond and framing classic Australian views with well over a thousand plants and trees. As a tribute to the property’s heritage Sandra and Stewart have salvaged some of the old garden’s plants and challenged Paul to incorporate these into the plans.
The icing on the cake is a spectacular swimming pool: a source of water for their future bush fire prevention strategy and a place for their grand kids to enjoy long summer days in.
This is a story of regeneration and reward.
Join leading landscape designer Michael McCoy as he showcases some of Australia’s most lavish and magnificent gardens from the first spade hitting the ground to the incredible end result. What does it mean to make a garden? What longings do gardens fulfil ? These are the question at the heart of a new show, Dream Gardens, launching on ABC TV this week. Eschewing how-to tips on growing plants (done so well by ABC’s other garden offering, Gardening Australia), this is a show that looks instead at what we want from gardens and how clever garden design can deliver it.
The host is the ebullient Michael McCoy, a garden designer and writer. McCoy has a degree in botany, long experience as a hands-on gardener and sought-after garden designer, and a passionate curiosity about what makes good garden design work. He’s empathetic, enthusiastic and opinionated – the perfect guide to lead viewers around eight gardens-in-the-making.