pophyry filetti projects on the go…

Late last year we started to introduce a brand new product into our range – an Italian porphyry ‘Filetti’ which is a raw linear tile perfect for driveways and other steep or high traffic areas. We’re in the process of putting it on the website as we speak but I just thought I’d share a couple of shots with you from Michael Cooke garden design as he’s  been right into it already and it’s looking fantastic.

The first job is at Central Coast Grammar School where the Cornerstone crew have been hard at it to finish this courtyard garden before before school resumes. Here Michael  has used  the Italian `Filletti’ porphyry and a sensational tiled wall that doubles as seating. The foliage colours are perfect for this area and it will look fantastic once we see some growth.

Eco Outdoor porphyry filetti used here by Michael Cooke at Central Coast Grammar

The second job is another Michael Cooke Design up at Copacabana on the central coast. Here Adam Eurell and the Nature’s Vision boys have been using porphyry filetti for a large driveway area leading up to the house. Notice the lay pattern which has some perpendicular sections to break up the linear format and add some interest over a large area.

Eco Outdoor porphyry filetti natural stone for driveway area

Eco Outdoor porphyry filetti natural stone for driveway area

Eco Outdoor porphyry filetti natural stone for driveway area


flinders open garden

This Australia Day will see two inspiring and contrasting contemporary gardens open for a special twilight event, as part of Open Gardens Australia.

Musk Cottage
Owner and landscape designer Rick Eckersley has created a quintessentially Australian contemporary garden full of character and style. The natural flowing landscape incorporates wetlands and woodlands using native and exotic grasses, strappy-leafed plants and shrubs selected for position, site conditions and aesthetic appeal.

In an elegant garden designed by Paul Bangay, Mediterranean-style plantings complement the French-influenced house. Wide grassed steps lead to an impressive terrace overlooking the countryside and Westernport Bay. The garden also features box hedges, which retain roses, salvias, irises and nepeta, while olives and rosemary blend with mature eucalypts.

Rick Eckersley's Open Garden

Opening Information
Saturday 26 January 2013. The gardens will be open from 4pm-8pm.
A joint ticket giving entry both gardens is $25.00, no charge for children under 18.
Bookings not required.
Musk Cottage: 371 Musk Creek Rd, Flinders. Enter from Mitford Rd.
Bangols: 525 Tucks Rd, Shoreham (near Flinders).

Hanging Plant Play

I know hanging pot plants are back in vogue, but I never knew a potless hanging plant was possible!  The amazing skill of Japanese String Gardening is a stunning and unique way to feature plants indoors and out.  It appears to be more suited to certain types of plants, such as orchids and succulents.  However the author of the attached blog is recommending keen gardeners should try out more unpredictable plants such as strawberries and fig trees.  I think I might have a go at a Gardenia String Garden hanging on my back deck so the fragrance can drift into my home.  Shall keep you posted…

behind the scenes

Check out the video below > This little ditty was put together by our photographer Richard Birch to give you a sense of  what happens behind the scenes at a photoshoot. The setting is part of a major lifestyle shoot we did last year for our 2012 summer outdoor furniture range.

We shot at garden designer Michael Cooke‘s own property on the central coast. For those of you who are not familiar with Michael Cooke’s work, he has not only a profound love of garden design but of both art and architecture and the role they play in shaping the outdoor space. His own central coast garden is open every year as part of the open garden scheme and is well worth a visit if you’re looking for a little inspiration, it’s full of delightful little ‘moments’  – from the old school watering cans which hang in the kitchen garden, to the gorgeous old barn doors which back on to a tree that almost feels like the faraway tree it’s so magical. Michael creates gardens that not only look great – they feel good to be in and I think Richard’s captured that in our lifestyle shots.

All in all we shot 4 lifestyle scenes, each beautifully styled by Louise Owens [3 of the shots can be seen above]. The shots looked absolutely fantastic and were a great success. Here Richard gives you a sneak peak of how it all comes together on the day. Enjoy.

vietnamese inspiration

Vietnamese / Japanese architect collaboration Vo Trong Nghia are the masterminds behind the Saigon house ‘Stacking Green’. The front and back facades are made up of layers of concrete planters cantilevered from two side walls. The effect is a stunning green wall of beautiful, tropical plants. Each of the planters has been designed with the height of the plants in mind, giving an organic staggered effect to the otherwise crisp and modern building. My favourite aspect of the house though, is the view from inside out. It’s a complete oasis once your inside the front door. A tranquil piece of architecture in an otherwise chaotic city.

vo trong nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' house Vo Trong Nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' house

Vo Trong Nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' houseVo Trong Nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' houseVo Trong Nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' houseVo Trong Nghia Saigon 'Stacking Green' house

’tis the season

It seems to have come around fast but it is most definitely the Christmas season, and here at Eco we do love something a little different. So when we saw these gems over at Flora Grubb we couldn’t resist posting about them here. They last for weeks, and you can just plant them up in your garden or in pots in the New Year. What a fab idea!

Flora Grubb - Succulent DecorationsFlora Grubb - Succulent DecorationsFlora Grubb - Succulent DecorationsFlora Grubb - Succulent Decorations Flora Grubb - Succulent decorationsFlora Grubb - Succulent decorations

guest blogger peter fudge – things that inspire me

About a year ago we packed up the family and moved into a new place. We said goodbye to our small but perfectly formed garden and said hello instead to a larger project altogether. I’d like to use the term makeover to describe the project but I’m not sure it’s strong enough! We inherited a kidney shaped pool with terracotta coping that showcased, much to my kids delight, a faux rock water feature in one corner. Thankfully a beautiful, fruitful mango tree overhangs it!

Long term I can make the garden work with the existing pool, we’ll look at getting some new coping and the enhancement of a new garden. But my very first step was to convert the salt water pool to a magnesium pool. Magnesium can be added to any existing salt or chlorine pool and the end result is great. Magnesium salts are gentle and therapeutic for the skin, no more itchy, stinging eyes or smelly chlorine skin. There is zero chlorine odor and in a properly balanced pool the water even tastes like mineral water. The best part though, is that with an environmentally friendly pool solution you can use the backwash water to irrigate your plants and garden. Even our dog prefers to drink from our pool now!

Magna Pool is the registered product for sale throughout Australia and as I mentioned before any existing pool can be converted. I’m really happy to see there is something environmentally friendly and innovative out in the market.

Our dog!Mango TreePeter Fudge Peter Fudge