Deb Hardy

Deb Hardy


Deb Hardy Landscapes & Design


09 815 1519


021 815 151


Garden: Finch St, Western Springs

The priority with this garden, which is the designer’s own, was to make the most of the space afforded by the double-sized section, keeping the spaces sympathetic to the architecture of the traditional villa while bringing both house and garden into the 21st century. The villa underwent a comprehensive renovation including a contemporary pavilion extension. Maximising indoor/outdoor flow between this pavilion and a new terrace and pool area plus the lawn at the back was central to the project.

Privacy was important, together with simple functional living spaces to accommodate a growing family. Ideally the garden was to be low maintenance, with colour in the form of foliage and subtropical plants, plus vegetables and fruit.

An enormous existing 100-year-old oak tree in the expansive back lawn was retained so that the family could enjoy its shade in summer, the seasonal changes and its attraction to birdlife. This vast lawn area has now become an exceptionally inviting and generous space for children to play in. “The kids can dabble at gardening, and I have my worm farm and an area for the bins and bags where all the leaves and acorns are kept,” says Deb. “Best of all, the garden is fun, manageable and makes the most of the sunny aspect afforded by the large site near the top of the slope.”

With a Bachelor of Commerce, Deb’s first career was in the advertising industry as a ‘suit’ straddling the economic demands of clients with the creative needs of her creative teams. In order to gain future flexibility by being self-employed and better able to accommodate the demands of motherhood, she decided to change careers and study for a Diploma of Landscape Design at Unitec. In 2003 she caught the eye of the producers of My House My Castle and was recruited to present a 10 week episode feature which involved turning what was essentially a backyard bog on Herald Island into a Jungle Oasis, complete with pool and Fijian bure. Besides presenting each episode, Deb also designed the garden, got the plans through council, and oversaw and was involved in the construction and planting of the garden. The concept for the entire garden was her idea and since completion it has been used by the new owners as a wedding venue.

Her career jettisoned from there into designing multiple gardens with an eye to the sub-tropical. She loves the textures and colours provided by the plants in this palette, together with the constancy of evergreens. Deb is inspired by urban works and plantings but prefers residential design work. Having been Secretary of the Garden Design Society of New Zealand for over 5 years, she is now the current Chairperson. 

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