From the gentle rolling hills of Muldersdrift to the lush and fertile fields of Elgin, here are some of the most exquisite images from HL's garden stories over 2015.
1. English countryside
This garden in the KZN Midlands is the epitome of English country informality, with roses and other beautiful colours blooming triumphantly amid lush greenery and manicured lawn. Jo and James Smart call this their home and happily it doubles up as Siteka Country Estate. When they first moved in 10 years ago, the garden was in a state of neglect. Jo explains that it has taken four to five years to start truly seeing the garden she had envisioned. '[A]lthough it continues to be a work in progress, it's incredibly rewarding,' she adds.
Original story HL November 2015
2. Theatrical geometry
Who would have thought that the pyramids would be found in the Randburg suburb of Fontainbleau, covered in thriving plant life? It turns out that these structures come together to form the extraordinary garden at Stark Studios. Landscape architect Patrick Watson created this dramatic garden to complement the studio's architecture. 'We always like to carry on where the architecture left off,' says Patrick.
Originally story HL October 2015
3. A hilly retreat
This garden grows on quite an incline given that it is has been planted on the steep length of Wynberg hill. Yet, this is part of its charm. A series of cascading terraces lead into each other and end in a fountain at the bottom, making for a dramatic garden of angles and perspective.
Original story HL June 2015
4. Wild flower wonder
The Ramskop Nature Garden in Clanwilliam is home to hundreds of flowering species from the four main biomes of the area. Hugging the foot of the Cederberg mountain range, you'll find the most variable colours during spring time.
Original story HL December 2014
5. Manicured order
This garden in Elgin has family members across three generations pool their talents to shape a green escape fit for French royalty. Mixing ornamentals with perennials means that the garden is full of variety and interest all year around, while also giving a manicured look to the garden. 'Ivory beauty' roses fill the formal rose garden, which was planned by daughter Mary Maurel. It is the simplicity of this space that is visually effective while also being lower maintenance.
Original story HL August 2015
6. Edible beauty
A garden built on doing things the old-fashioned way is the foundation for Antonia De Lucas's kitchen at Leafy Greens Cafe. Run entirely on organic principles, it is here that she finds truly nutritious ingredients to create dishes that are not only healthy but full of beautiful flavour.
Original story HL April 2015
7. Manmade oasis
This sprawling garden offers a true escape from the hustle and bustle of town living. By making smart decisions based on what was already a garden with established plants, owners Richard and Karen Goss slowly created a true oasis in Mpumalanga. The natural pool is one of the highlights, surrounded by weathered rocks, ferns and tal cordylines.
Original story HL September 2015