44 STYLE | landscaping Image: Courtesy of Plants Management Australia www.pma.com.au Helleborus, ‘Ruby Daydream’. LIGHT IN THE STORM Winter in the garden doesn’t need to be a bleak, grey affair. In fact, with the right planting, the season can look particularly bright. Words Craig Wilson By the time winter has made its presence known in our gardens, it’s nice to think we’ve pruned the hedges, raked the final few leaves and deadheaded the last of autumn’s flowers. All we really want to do when the mornings are frosty is look out at the garden from the couch, scanning for the first signs of the coming spring. But don’t discount winter as a ‘dead’ season in the garden – there is still much to appreciate, if we take the time to look. While flowers are the true garden stars of summer, winter has its own flowering favourites that you could use to lighten up that dull winter corner in your garden. Start with Helleborus sp. or winter roses. These evergreen perennials will put on a great winter display in a shady position in your garden. In recent years, there’s been some amazing flowering hybrids released that you’ll be able to pick up at your local garden centre. These range from beautiful pure whites to moody deep claret reds, with a wide range of flower form and evergreen foliage texture. Check out ‘White Tutu’ or ‘Spectrum Double’ and you’ll see what I mean. Another traditional winter-flowering favourite is daphne. It does have the reputation of being a bit fickle to get going, and most gardeners have lost a new daphne or two over the years with no rhyme or reason, but, if you can persist, the winter fragrance is worth the effort. Daphne is one of those memory-evoking plants – it might be time to rekindle the fragrant experience. Pick a sprig and bring it indoors for you and the kids or grandkids to enjoy. If you’re planting a daphne why not investigate the upright Himalayan version, Daphne bholua. It will sit well beside a wall or fence and again offers that same fragrant effect. As winter stretches closer to spring, the flower action really kicks in with our early camellias and rhododendrons taking their cue. Smaller, free-flowering camellia hybrids seem to be more in fashion these days… think ‘Cinnamon Cindy’ or ‘Fairy Blush’, and I always notice ‘Christmas Cheer’ as the first rhodo to break bud. Not to be overlooked are primulas, pansies, polyanthus, snowdrops, wintersweet and dianthus, too. All of which will hit their stride well before spring. So, with a bit of planning and planting, your winterscape can easily be transformed into one filled with colour, fragrance and warmth.
EXTERNAL AFFAIRS with Tim Goom Dishing the dirt. Project Manager Goom Landscapes: Steve Vabulis Steve Vabulis came to Goom Landscapes 10 years ago with an already well established landscaping portfolio behind him. After travelling to London and a foray in the hospitality and banking industries (like many kiwis!) his travels took him to Sydney, where the stunning climate enticed Steve outdoors into his first landscaping role, and he has never looked back. His next stop was Auckland, where he further honed his landscaping skills on the tools and met his wife, also a displaced Cantabrian. They returned to Christchurch 10 years ago, and Goom Landscapes snapped him up in the role of foreman. This cemented his already formidable problem solving skills in terms of understanding the ‘big picture’ of any project. As his role evolved, he soon established himself as a highly respected Project Manager for Goom Landscapes, a role he has now held for 4 years. Outside of work, Steve is a passionate sportsman, with a keen interest in the outdoors. He is also a busy Dad to two young Children - so he’s in a phase where his exercise (apart from the odd stolen box fit class) is most likely on the beach chasing his kids. He likes to think it is after the annual summer Kaiteriteri pilgrimage with his family that he is in peak physical condition! Steve is proud of the breadth of services offered by Goom Landscapes. “Often people don’t understand that landscaping is much more than shovelling dirt around, it is full construction in the same way as building. In my role as Project Manager I oversee all those involved in bringing a project to fruition. At Goom, we have everything under one roof - landscape architects, project management, and the landscapers on the ground. If any issues arise, as they invariably do with any landscaping project, communication and problem solving happens in a seamless and efficient manner. Time is not lost seeking external advice or waiting for replies.” by Goom Steve enjoys the challenges of project management, at any one time he will lead 5 to 6 projects. He is involved from the concept design presentation phase to completion. This enables him to work alongside the landscape architect and the client in synergy to really understand exactly what the client wants. Aside from establishing strong relationships and open communication with clients, the biggest satisfaction of his role is project completion. “It is enormously rewarding to visit a client absolutely delighted with the lifespace we have created for them”. During his time at Goom, Steve has noted a significant trend in Christchurch towards outdoor living, including outdoor rooms, bespoke fire places and built in barbeques. “I think people better understand that investing in quality landscaping is equally as important in terms of the overall value and enjoyment of your property as anything which happens inside.” Steve defines his role as smoothly transitioning a project through it’s different phases and communicating constantly with all involved. “When you are constructing in the outdoors, curveballs are the nature of the beast, but that’s what keeps my job varied and interesting. I love nothing more than switching into problem solving mode. Steve will get a chance to stop and smell the roses when he attends the Registered Master Landscapers Landscapes of Distinction Awards 2<strong>01</strong>9 in Auckland in August, where he has four projects entered, demonstrating how actively involved he is in raising standards nationally within the landscape construction industry. In the meantime, if you have a landscaping vision but need to discuss how to ‘get it done’, call Goom Landscapes. TM Outdoor Lifespace Get the most out of your home and property with landscaping that reflects your taste and lifestyle. by Goom 0800 GOOM LS goom.nz CHRISTCHURCH QUEENSTOWN WANAKA IDEATION-GOM<strong>01</strong>09 We create award winning outdoor spaces that draw you outside, and give you a reason to relax and stay a while. Redefine how you live outside. Choose Lifespace TM by Goom.