Daniel Tyrrell Landscapes
31 Balston Street
Balaclava, Vic 3183
Email: info@danieltyrrell.com.au
Phone: +61 416 016 446
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Garden Visit – Hyde Hall, Chelmsford, UK.

Here’s to a great armchair garden visit – minus the jetlag, packed thermos and damp shoes!

I was lucky to get some great pics from my mum (a genuine UK native) who is enjoying the balmy weather in the UK this month. As part of her travels, she visited the very amazing Hyde Hall in Chelmsford.

A little history to get you started. There were only six trees on the top of a windswept hill and no garden when it was bought by Dr and Mrs Robinson in 1955. The site was cold and windy, the top of the hill was covered in gravel and the soil on the slopes comprised a sticky clay.

Today, Hyde Hall is one of four public gardens run by the Royal Horticultural Society comprising amazing trees, lake, orchard and incredible dry garden which is a great display of drought-tolerant planting.

One of my favourite additions is the hay meadows which have been planted as wildflower meadows. If you are a frequent visitor to my Pinterest page you will see I am a big fan of this style of planting!

     Source : UKgardenphotos

The Queen Mother’s Garden is full of ‘everyday garden’ favourites including Echinacea, Agapanthus, Allium and Veronicastrum. Great ideas for home gardening as the plants in this section are hardy and able to be grown anywhere!

Like all of the fabulous gardens in the RHS ‘family’, they are constantly evolving and adding new plants and structures. Definitely worth a visit at different times of the year.

At RHS Hyde Hall another great feature is the labelled plants – lets hope mum remembered her pen and paper for me!

Want more meadow planting or perennial planting ideas click here.

Sources : Hyde Hall, Express,

Disclaimer : All efforts have been made to identify the source of all images used in this blog. We apologise for any which may have been missed or referenced incorrectly. Please fell free to contact us if your work needs to be referenced.

The High Line.

The High Line.

Twelve years ago, while on a mini break at my future mother in laws weekender in the country, I fell in love.

It’s not what you are thinking.

I do love my mother in law but this new love was for the work of Piet Oudolf showcased in her Gardens Illustrated magazine.

In particular his work with perennials and his plant planning for The High Line in New York City.

The High line is an elevated and abandoned railway line that was originally used as a way to transport fresh food through Manhattan’s West Side. A fantastic solution to transport goods and unload without disturbing traffic on the streets. The growth of interstate trucking in the 1950s led to a drop in rail traffic throughout the nation. The last train operated in 1980.

The High Line lay dormant, rejected and left to decay. In 1999, The Friends of the High Line was formed by two local residents of the neighbourhood. After photographer Joel Sternfeld photographed it in all its glory for 12 months. Broadened community support of public redevelopment of the High Line for pedestrian use grew (and so did the dollars – 150 million in total!) .

On April 10 2006, official construction began and Piet Oudolf, my hero of landscape design, was entrusted with the task of planting design.

Source : archived.thehighline.org

In May 2006, my wife and I were lucky enough to enjoy 10 days of child free holiday time in New York city, a week shy of the opening of the High Line. Despite our efforts and blatant begging we were not allowed entrance. These are some of my happy snaps from the street of the final days of planting and construction for the first phase.

Built over approximately eight years, and three phases, the High Line is now a widely acclaimed 1.45-mile-long (2.33 km) path of green goodness!

Today it’s a city dwellers playground planted with wild flowers and grasses, offering walkers a panorama of the bustle below that makes the park feel removed from the city and an also an important part of it’s hustle and bustle. It’s interesting to note that the High Line cost more per acre than probably any park in human history. Friends of the High Line raises 98% of the High Line’s annual budget.

    Source : ngm.nationalgeographic.com

Piet Oudolf with collaboration with the landscape architecture firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro, There is a focus on native trees, plants and grasses that are hardy and sustainable.

Many of the species that originally grew on the High Line have been incorporated into the park’s landscape. Use of perennials is what Oudolf is so famous for. No matter what time of the year you visit, there is amazing colour and texture.

Source : womanwanders.com

For now, I need to be patient and marvel at the power of community and great garden design from the comfort of my pc.

I look forward to seeing it in all its splendour on my next visit! Fingers crossed!

More information :

The High Line website

See one of my gardens inspired by the perennial movement here.

My Favourite Blog – Gardenista

My Favourite Blog – Gardenista

Many people ask me where I get my inspiration for my design work.


Sometimes it can be wandering in my local neighbourhood, from books and magazines I’m reading or images I’ve seen online. One of the most fantastic blogs that I subscribe to and love to make time to read is Gardenista.

Source: http://www.gardenista.com

Launched in May 2012 by a former New York Times columnist, Gardenista calls itself a “Sourcebook for Cultivated Living”. It definitely is this and so much more!

Source: http://www.gardenista.com

Along with it’s ‘sister’ site Remodelista, it’s clean, modern taste in design is what floats my boat.

Currently, they have a competition running in the US Considered Design Awards 2015. Readers get a chance to vote in different categories such as Amateur Small Garden and Edible Garden. Jump on board and enjoy meandering through some amazing green spaces and real homes and vote on your favourite landscape design.

Source: http://www.gardenista.com

Click on this link to check out some fabulous ‘garden rehabs’. There is nothing like before and after shots to show you just how achievable garden transformations can be.

Even though this site is based in the US they have at times travelled to our fine shores. There are plenty of Australian gardens showcased on this site including Melbourne garden design. In February Margot Guralnick showcased our MIFGS Meadow garden which we collaborated with local business Archiblox.

Click here to see more of my MIFGS garden.

Source: http://www.gardenista.com

Source: http://www.gardenista.com

Suggested links :

Daniel Tyrrell Landscapes


Piet Oudolf

Great office spaces need green!

Great office spaces need green!

Being a landscaper has many perks and definitely one of them is that ‘my office’ is constantly changing and set in some fantastic locations! Never do I tire of being in the fresh air and enjoying all that Melbourne’s weather throws at me. On the flip side I am also forced to be indoors and do the ‘indoor’ tasks of the profession – design work, invoices, answering emails, etc.

Last year I was lucky enough to build a home office in my backyard.

During the planning stage, I did plenty of research into what things were necessary to make the space work – productivity, comfort, kitchen space ( a man needs to eat! ) and large desk space to lay out plans and large documents.

According to Mashable Australia, there are 7 main factors that  can greatly increase employee peace of mind and productivity.

These include ergonomics, lack of clutter, colour, lighting, the opportunity to move and adding plants to the workspace.

In my office, I have several different workspaces. From normal waist high to large bench spaces, there is the chance to move and readjust the back – mine is so used to being over a tool so the concept of sitting for an extended period of time is very foreign to me. Streamlining the space and avoiding too much clutter has been helpful in staying on task and getting even the menial tasks done.

Pops of colour are relaxing in the space and I definitely advocate the use of plants to create a calm atmosphere. If I cant be with the plants outside then this is a sure fire way to bring my outside in. A study from Texas A&M University found that plants increase workplace productivity and creative performance by up to 30 percent. Click here to read more.

Tips to green your office space.

1. Choose your pot first – the amount of space you have will determine what time of plant to choose.

2. Think about the light in your office. For rooms with low levels of light, choose shade-tolerant plants – those with large dark green leaves photosynthesise better than others, which means they need less light to live. Think Happy Palms, Peace Lily’s and the flavour of the month, the Fiddle Leaf FIg.

3. In areas with bright light choose plants with coloured or patterned leaves, including tropical plants, which usually grow in dappled sun conditions.

4. Like friends, you need to nurture them just right – not too much and not too little. Water more in the warmer months. Don’t forget to apply a six-monthly granule feed twice a year, in spring and autumn.

Want to read more?

Read this.

Or this.

Disclaimer : All efforts have been made to identify the source of all images used in this blog. We apologise for any which may have been missed or referenced incorrectly. Please fell free to contact us if your work needs to be referenced.

Not the sharpest tool in the shed

Not the sharpest tool in the shed

Confucius says ” He that would perfect his work must first sharpen his tools.”

Well Confucius you were bloody right! It’s time to get the hands limbered and the tools ready to tackle the jobs of Spring – only 22 days to go – yes we are definitely counting after a cold Winter here in Melbourne.

I love this example of the ideal mini garden shed by Michelle Slatalla on Gardenista. Although I may not have this order and colour in my own garden shed, there are definitely a staple of tools that I buy and maintain to use year in and year out.

Niwaki Garden Secateurs

Described by UK Landscape Designer Monty Don as his favourite garden tool, these too are my favourite and my go to for Spring pruning. Even with cold wet hands or muddy gloves, these are easy to use due to their scissor type handles. Hand forged in the mountains of Yamagata Japan, these are the Rolls Royce of the gardening world. Click here to order.

Niwaki Garden Holster

There’s nothing worse than being up on a ladder or in a tree and not having your tools accessible – that’s why I also bought the Niwaki Garden Holster. Solid 4mm leather back board and 3mm front pockets, with belt loop. Starts off clean and pale but soon matures to a nice dark rich tone. Mine definitely looks a little more lived in than the one pictured below but it definitely does the job! Click here to order.

Digadoo Half Length Timber Shovel

Designed and hand crafted in Mittagong NSW, this is a fantastic addition to the shed. Comfortable, well balanced and beautifully made with stainless steel blades and spotted gum handles a Digadoo spade is definitely more than just a spade. Made to last this spade will hopefully outlast me! To see more from the Digadoo website click here.

Niwaki Topiary Clippers

Hand forged and razor sharp, these are so handy for one handed pruning of any cloud hedges. Pictured are my beauties that I have been using regularly for five years. The best part about these is they can be sent back to Niwaki, polished and sharpened at a minimal cost. On my to do list for this week! Here’s more from Niwaki.

Sneeboer Hand Held Hoe

I bought this beauty from local store Phillip & Lea in Kyneton. This is the candy store for gardeners! Available in ash or cherry handles accommodating lefties or right handed gardeners, this is a lightweight tool that makes reaching into garden beds from the path or lawn with ease! Again beautifully made, this is a long lasting addition to the shed. Order this one here.

Tumbleweed Composter

This simple garden contraption is the time poor gardeners answer to transforming home and garden waste into nutrient dense fertiliser for the garden. For my household of four, I can add four litres of kitchen scraps together with the shredded office paper each week and convert this to compost with little effort – just add to the bin and turn every few days for the waste to break down. Fits in any garden space and so simple to use! For more info and some great ideas for recycling click here.

So its now time to get out there and get garden organised.

Here’s some topiaries I prepared earlier.

Introducing Med.O Seeds

Introducing Med.O Seeds

The old saying of “those who play together stay together” has been very true when it comes to my Book Club. Formed in 2013, five individuals from our industry meet on a monthly basis to chew the fat and talk all things plants. We may not necessarily have a book on the table, but the discussion is definitely based on our love of getting our hands dirty and all things green.

Through these ‘gatherings’, the seed was sown (pardon the pun) and this new collaboration – Med.O Seeds- has been born!

The idea behind the name is to explore the potential of a sustainable alternative to lawn verges, medians and other open spaces. Using the principles of meadow planting to green up areas which would not necessarily be green and abundant in plant life.

This not for profit company’s Directors include Ian Barker from Ian Barker Gardens, Rod Hanley from Garden Planner’s Landscaping, Kate Bryce from  Kate Bryce Horticulture,  Bethany Williamson – Registered Landscape Architect and myself Daniel Tyrrell.

Med.O Seeds provided the seeds for the amazing Gold winning garden of Ian Barker Garden’s at this years Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show. The garden was well received by the public and sachets of the Med.O Seeds were also sold.

It has been fantastic to be involved with the City of Hume as we trial our meadow seeds in the Northern suburbs of Melbourne. At this stage our Spring sow will be happening this weekend. Ideally, there will be two years of trials in non-irrigated areas and we will be closely watching what happens in the second season. At this stage we are selling seeds through the website. To purchase Med.O Seeds click here.

If you are a regular reader of my blog or frequent my website you will know that I love the perennial movement and the use of perennial plants in modern gardens. One of my all time favourite designers is Piet Oudolf and I hope that we will see more of this planting style in the streets of Melbourne.

Many thanks to Ian Barker Gardens for providing the beautiful pictures of Ian’s garden “Crossroads” from MIFGS 2015.

Going potty? Here’s 10 of the best.

Going potty? Here’s 10 of the best.

Seeing as Spring is definitely in the air its time to get out in it and enjoy the sunshine. Pots are a great way to add maximum appeal with minimal effort. No matter what your garden ‘style’ may be, there is definitely a style out there for you!  Forget about the orange terracotta of the 80’s, we’re thinking concrete, ceramic and copper! Here are ten of our favourites –  suitable for indoor or outdoor garden design. All available in Melbourne. Get to it! Get planting!

1.  On The Side

These concrete composite pots come in four designs and in multiple sizes suitable for indoor and out. We love the raw concrete finish.

2.  Pop & Scott

Anyone who is a regular magazine junkie will recognise the work of this fabulous design studio in Northcote. Made from fibreglass and plaster making them very lightweight and easily moveable. These are recommended for indoor use to keep the beautiful hand painted finish pristine.

3.  Fox & Ramona

Anyone who is a regular magazine junkie will recognise the work of this fabulous design studio in Northcote. Made from fibreglass and plaster making them very lightweight and easily moveable. These are recommended for indoor use to keep the beautiful hand painted finish pristine.

4.  Smalltown

I know we said pots but these hanging versions definitely needed to be added to the list! This knotted plant pod is available in a range of colours and is a great alternative to planting when you are in a small space.

5.  Atelier Vierkant

These hand carved and hand sculptured pots are gorgeous – they could be used without plants as a sculptural feature in any landscape design. Originating in Belgium these are pots that will last a lifetime.

6.  Mr Kitly

Based in Brunswick, Mr Kitly stocks a fantastic range of handmade ceramic planters. We like this large angled Anchor planter. They also stock plant stands and to die for copper garden tools. Check out his website in the links below.

7.  Lump Sculpture Studio

Available in three sizes and made from Corten steel with a natural rusted finish or aluminium with a powder coated finish or any of Lumps Faux finishes.

8.  West Elm

If you want to incorporate more plants into your home, these West Elm planters definitely hit the spot. Inspired by Modern Danish design. Available in two sizes and three colours – black, white and red. Designed for indoor use only.

9.  Hux & Co.

100% terracotta pots hand painted in Melbourne. We love this limited edition pot – it’s a perfect boost of colour for inside and outside.

10.  Lump Sculpture Studio

Planted out with beautiful foliage of your choice this is a fabulous piece for indoors or outdoors by Lump. Convert the bowl into a water feature, pond or an ethanol burner. Price on application so click on Lump’s link below.

For further info and to purchase jump on the links :


On The Side


Pop & Scott

Atelier Vierkant

Mr Kitly


West Elm Australia

Hux & Co.

“Planting – A New Perspective” by Piet Oudolf & Noel Kingsbury

“Planting – A New Perspective” by Piet Oudolf & Noel Kingsbury

For those of you who know me, I am no literary genius of any sort. For those who know me, you will also agree that I am an insane purchaser of books – especially ones that have anything to do with my love of the green stuff. If you regularly read my blog or stalk my Facebook or Instagram pages (I know who you are and I wish you would just say hi instead), you will know that Piet Oudolf is definitely one of my Landscape heroes.

This particular book has never made it to my bookcase.

It gets used every day in my Design Studio instead.

What makes this book different to any others in my collection by Oudolf is that It is the first book to share Oudolf’s original planting plans and plant groupings and the only book to explicitly show how his gardens and landscapes are made.

I must not leave out the brilliance of Noel Kingsbury – I affectionately call this British Garden Designer a true blue plant nerd. He is also well known for his promotion of naturalistic planting and garden design.

Together they are a force to be reckoned with!

This book is a great resource for any home gardener. Looking for plant charts and extensive info on plants and what grows best together? Are you wanting to choose plants for colour, texture of for the way they grow?

Forget your sleep depriving screen time at night – stick this book on your bedside table and flick through the gorgeous pics of perennials instead!

My rating : a mighty 10/10.

Piet Oudolf if you are reading this, the fan club page is in the Draft stage already!

Plant of The Month – Verbena bonariensis

It may not be on the ‘it list’ of the must have garden plants but for me, this perennial plant really does float my botanical boat! This variety of verbena is perfect if you would like to create a perennial based garden design in your own backyard.

Native to tropical South America, we fondly call it by it’s common name – Purple Top. Flowering for three months of the year in most places, this plant has a low care nature. You read it right, this plant is perfect for the lazy gardener. With low care, it will still provide you with a great display of it’s beautiful purple heads.

Top 10 Facts and Growing Tips.

1.Thrives in full sun to part afternoon shade.

2. Flowers in late Spring and throughout Summer to late Autumn.

3. Tall and slender stems can grow up to 6ft tall and spread to 3ft wide.

4. Fantastic plant to keep the bees and butterflies buzzing in your garden.

5. Loves a feed in Spring to keep the blooms blooming – use any general purpose fertilizer.

6. Thrives in  well drained soil.

4. Great companion plant to many perennial favourites including miscanthus, alium and sedum.

5. It makes a brilliant plant in beds that separate areas of the garden where you want a boundary without restricting the view.

6. They self-seed freely and gradually work their way around the garden – more wins for the lazy relaxed gardener!

10. Want to cut and put in a vase? Perfect for 7-10 days in water. Will also dry well for a dried arrangement.

Looking for more perennial inspiration for your garden? Check out this and this.

What to order some perennials for your own garden? I suggest you jump on here.

Images sourced from Google.

off the shelf

off the shelf

These are the four books that are off my book shelf this week!

The RHS Chelsea Garden Show is coming up (May 24-28) and I am looking forward to seeing what the experienced designers and new entrants have come up with.  I will post more on who I am following, and what new ideas and inspiration I uncover, in the upcoming weeks.  In the meantime it made me think about just how often I turn to the books of those designers that frequent Chelsea and I continue to be inspired by.  These four designers each have their own focus but I regularly pull from different aspects and elements I have come across in their designs when creating my own landscape designs.

Tom and Sue Stuart Smith are the dynamic duo behind ‘The Barn Garden’.  Tom is by far one of my favourite designers. This is book is his own garden and gives so much insight into what he finds interesting and how he has then used that in his own garden.  I also love how it gives such a nice snapshot of the evolution of the place where he lives.

Diarmuid! This is a man who truly knows how to think outside the box.  He is so creative, almost quirky and very adventurous, which is always something to aspire to!

‘The Gardens of Luciano Guibbilei’, the book and his gardens are sublime.  His gardens as you can tell by the cover are contemporary yet still quite formal.  They are always very high-end and always extremely polished in style and form.  Just check out his form work!

Last but not least Phil Johnson’s book is one I often refer back to time and time again.  It’s my go to book on sustainability, something which Phil has become a huge advocate for and now I always like to keep it front of mind in my designs.  Philip is also the only Australian to win Best in Show at Chelsea in 2013, no mean feat, is a close colleague and great designer.

You’ve seen my shelf… I’ve got so many books!  So I’ll keep you updated with what I’m grabbing off the shelf each month.  But if you are looking for a certain book or have a favourite of your own be sure to let me know…