Anyone for golf?

Formerly a scrub-covered paddock, this 2ha site now features a large house, two dams, a stream and a perfectly manicured four-hole golf course
View of the landscaped gardens around the golf cottage, estate, grass, home, house, land lot, landscape, lawn, property, real estate, tree, yard, brown
View of the landscaped gardens around the golf cousre featuring a stone waterfall where water flows over the edge from the uptmost damn

Taming a large landscape requires plenty of vision and an ability to see the bigger picture especially when you're confronted with a bare paddock with few significant natural features.

For landscape designer Dean Herald of Rolling Stone Landscapes, the development of this property presented just such a challenge. However, an early involvement in the project meant he was able to determine key elements, such as the position of the house.

"There was a small pond on the land, which we wanted to exploit to create a large dam," Herald says. "The house had to be high enough to provide a good fall so the rainwater collected from the roof could be used to fill the dam."

The house also needed to be set well back from the road to fully utilise the site with a long meandering driveway. In addition, an elevated position would provide the best outlook.

"The position of the house meets all these criteria. It has a 1000m² roof and 500m² of paving, both of which collect water that is recycled for irrigation."

View of this timber boardwalk bridge crossing the backyard, flower, garden, grass, landscape, landscaping, outdoor structure, plant, pond, water, water feature, brown
View of this timber boardwalk bridge crossing the stream

Herald says the location of the dam was the first priority for the landscaping.

"Everything spread out from there," he says. "The dam, formed from the original pond, became two dams and two waterfalls linked by a man-made stream."

As the water from the lower pond near the house is pumped back up to the top dam, water is constantly re-circulating, ensuring it remains fresh.

Creating a natural environment was also crucial to the project, says Herald.

"We exploited the natural swales on the property, and in other areas manipulated the landscape to provide similar hollows and curves."

view of the plants and small trees  architecture, backyard, estate, facade, garden, grass, home, house, landscape, landscaping, outdoor structure, plant, property, real estate, residential area, villa, walkway, yard, brown
view of the plants and small trees planted in thes planterboxes

Local sandstone features extensively. Much of the rock was relocated from elsewhere on the property to edge the stream, waterfalls and pools. The dam walls were built from a stone cladding system that replicates the local rock.

The planting reinforces the natural look, although it is not all indigenous.

"Natural grasses, such as foxtails, provide movement as they sway in the breeze," says Herald. "In other places we have mixed spiky leafed plants, such as New Zealand flax, with the softer foliage of gardenias. It's important to maintain a balance in any planting scheme."

The landscape incorporates four carefully manicured golf holes, with greens bordered by variegated mondo grass.

Nearer the house, the planting is more formal, and includes flowering cherries, maples, Select Form lilly pilly trees and borders of Japanese box hedging.

Mar 31, 2007

Credit list

Landscape contractor
Rolling Stone Landscapes
House builder
Denton Homes
Granite cobbles from Eco Concepts
Alpines Nursery
House architect
Russell Scott
Stone cladding
Stackstone cladding from
Hardwoods Australia
We know the specialists