Breaking Down Mediterranean Gardens [Pt. 1]

 
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Missing summer? Evoke a year round endless summer vibe with a garden type that the Mediterraneans do best; an area dedicated to outdoor entertaining and blurring the lines between indoor and outdoor flow. Minimal lines and muted colours create a dreamy space that will transport you to your favourite summer destination every time you look outside.

 
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1. OUTDOOR LIVING

think covered seating areas for entertaining, overgrown pergolas and wide open courtyards with little shaded corners to escape the summer heat

 

If 2019’s top garden trend was outdoor entertaining, we think we know who it was inspired by : the Med’s. The Mediterraneans have been practicing indoor outdoor flow since forever, and are the masters at simple and effortless outdoor entertaining. Incorporating a simple frame pergola and setting up creeping vines to grow over it will create a shaded seating area in no time. And for the winter months, when New Zealand gets a little cooler, installing an outdoor fire or buying a brazier will cover you for when outdoor entertaining seems like a chilly option. Outdoor areas aren’t only for entertaining as much as relaxation however, and creating corners of seating with big pillows under the leaves of a shady tree will evoke that Mediterranean feel in your garden, just make sure to keep the colour scheme muted.

 
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2. FLOWING WATER

cool the heat wave air and soothe your heat dazed brain with the sound of trickling water from a beautiful stone or pot fountain

 

When the warm summer wind is blowing and the song of cicadas fill the air, the soft yet consistent sound of trickling water just serves to trick your brain into cooling down, if you can resist dipping your toes into the cool water. Flowing water also adds another dimension to a garden that otherwise is filled with dry, drought-resistant plantings and moisture-less gravel. A water feature doesn’t need to be an expensive addition, and there are many DIY recyclable water fountain ideas on websites like Pinterest. Look for natural, pale stone or terracotta that will fit the vibe of a Mediterranean garden.

 
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3. STONE COURTYARD BASE

where the sun burns hot and the grass doesn’t grow the Meds came up with an answer to cover their sparse courtyard areas aesthetically

 

Using a local limestone or pale gravel, Mediterranean’s were able to cover sparse, dry areas of ground and create a pretty, consistent base for their minimal yet vibrant gardens. Limestone is used world wide by many garden enthusiasts alike as a base for pathways and areas surrounding a home, but the Med’s are known to use it predominately on large courtyards and in their outdoor living areas, as well as pathways. Low cost and very low maintenance, using a gravel chip is probably one of the first steps one should take to setting that Mediterranean garden look ‘in stone’; without an area of limestone, one could question whether they are actually looking at a Med inspired garden!

 
 
 

Thanks for reading, see Part 2 coming soon!

Astrid Senior