This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

A Super Swish Suburban Front Garden

Gardens

The efforts of a landscape designer are usually concentrated towards the rear of the property, where a private sanctuary can be nurtured in relative privacy, hidden from the street. Not here!

This Camberwell project by Bethany Williamson Landscape Architecture is a celebration of the front garden. Subbing out the traditional lawn for a space layered with different heights, explosive colours and varied textures, this often overlooked domain is given all the attention it deserves!

10th February, 2021

Defying the traditional lawn-centric approach to front gardens, Bethany Williamson opted for a plant-focussed palette for this Camberwell project. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Pops of pink and purple courtesy of ivia ‘mystic spires’ and fuschia coneflowers. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Undulating Japanese buxus shrubs lend a sculptural element to the garden, flanking the path leading up to the front door. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Bethany has used traditional plantings in a subtle, contemporary way! Photo – Martina Gemmola.

The garden seems simple on paper, but on closer inspection it is complex and detailed. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Purple perennials give pops of colour in the summer months. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Low-lying hydrangeas and star jasmine create floral groundcovers. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Bethany’s focus was on creating intricate layers and a variety of textures to ensure the garden would unfold on closer inspection. Photo – Martina Gemmola.

*The* picture-perfect garden for a heritage double fronter! Photo – Martina Gemmola.

Sasha Gattermayr
Wednesday 10th February 2021

‘‘The design is simple on paper, but the texture and details in the built garden are complex and captivating.’ – Bethany Williamson

This Camberwell garden by Bethany Williamson Landscape Architecture subverts the focus of traditional garden design to the front of the house, where a plant-focussed palette elevates heritage architecture, in one of Melbourne’s leafy suburban enclaves. The design moves away from a lawn-centric front garden and towards an abundant, subtle garden, with plenty of layers.

‘We wanted to play with the elements usually found in traditional front gardens, and give them a contemporary and current feel,’ explains Bethany. ‘Clipped hedges, soft shrubs, a path from the gate to the front door, flowering perennials and pebbles were all used to make the space feel calm rather than traditional.’

The drama in the scenery comes from the plants rather than built-forms, meaning textures and colours were required to work in perfect cohesion. Mounds of undulating Japanese buxus shrubs flank the front path and lend a sculptural element, while remaining green all year round. Tall stalks of purple ivia ‘mystic spires’ supply height behind the ground covers, low-lying hydrangeas lend a delicate touch to the palette, and pink coneflowers give a burst of seasonal colour at the height of summer!

‘The clipped buxus contrasts with the burst of softness in the perennials,’ says Bethany. ‘The soft foliage of the silver birches contrasts the round, smoothness of the pebbles. The texture of the pavers next to the creeping groundcover of star jasmine sit comfortably with each other.’ This garden is all about variation.

Working in tandem with the heritage home facade, this generous project is one for the whole street to enjoy!

Keen as a bean to see more of Bethany’s projects? See them all here!

This Week

44:00

Podcast

The Unconventional Career Path Of Interior Designer Yasmine Ghoniem Of YSG Studio, On TDF Talks

In this podcast conversation, host Lucy Feagins talks to the founder of YSG Studio and so-hot-right-now visionary leading the Australian int...

On The Market

A Santorini-Style Oasis (And One Of Our Fave Ever Homes) Is On The Market!

Artist Phoebe Rolleston’s architect-designed, breezy family home in Glen Iris, Melbourne is for sale. And we are so jealous of the new own...

Stays

A Contemporary Reimagining of Robin Boyd’s Fenner House

Las Palmas by DUO Architects in association with Davis Architects is a Byron Bay hinterland home inspired by the owner's upbringing in Robin...

A Longer Read

Design-Led Aboriginal Entrepreneurship Is Not New

Jirra Lulla Harvey - Koorie woman, First Nations business strategist, and judge of the TDF + Laminex Design Awards Collaboration category ...
Jirra Lulla Harvey
  13 hours ago

Creative People

Building A Family Legacy On Local Manufacturing, With Abode Living

Creative director Amelia Marasco Adair takes us on a tour of the company's Camberwell HQ - featuring their production warehouse, offices +

Homes

A Photographer + Art Director’s Alistair Knox Home

Photographer Sean Fennessy, and art director Jessica Lillico's heart-warming Warrandyte mid-century family home, designed by Alistair Knox!

Shopping

Nau Releases 2021 Australian-Made Furniture Collection

Cult’s in-house Australian-made furniture and lighting brand, Nau, releases it 2021 collection designed by Adam Goodrum, Kate Stokes, Adam...

News

A Glamorous New Range Of Matte + Metallic Mixers

New additions to Phoenix Tapware’s popular Designer Sink Mixers collection will complement every element in your home.
Sponsored

Studio Visit

P0LY Designs : The Ultimate Pandemic Pivot Project

How Lara Fisher and Andy Kepitis turned their lockdown hobby into full-time business!
1.50

One Room Wonders

A Contemporary Chic Bedroom Makeover

A gorgeous, achievable room transformation - in partnership with Surround by Laminex.

Shopping

An Epic Collaboration Between Two Local Icons, David Bromley + Review!

David Bromley collaborates with much loved local fashion label Review on a colourful new collection of apparel and accessories.

On The Market

An Iconic Melbourne Art Family’s Richmond Home Is For Sale

The family of beloved artist Mirka Mora are selling their contemporary, multi-level home, featuring a pool-with-a-view!

News

An Online Fundraiser Featuring Work By 100+ Local Artists!

The annual B-Side art sale by artist-run, not-for-profit gallery Blindside is back to raise money for the arts community, this year featurin...
Sasha Aarons

TDF Design Awards

ANNOUNCING The Winners Of The TDF + Laminex Design Awards 2021!

Last night we announced the winners and commended projects in the TDF + Laminex 2021 Design Awards in our online awards ceremony! Drum roll
Lucy Feagins
  21 hours ago

Architecture

A Remarkable Reworking Of A Humble Gold Coast Shack

ME Architects have extraordinarily reworked and extended this humble 1970s Gold Coast home.

View Comments

Similar Stories

Gardens

A Sensitive Update For This Grand, 100-Year-Old Garden in Sydney

Numerous landscape designers have tended to this Mosman property over the past century, resulting in a layered, grandiose space.

Gardens

An Equally Functional + Lush Suburban Garden Makeover

The stunning garden of landscape designer and owner of Ballast Landscape, Julian Bombardiere, in Kings Langley, NSW.

Gardens

A Swedish-Inspired Garden In Suburban Melbourne!

Landscape designer Penny Starr creates a garden for all seasons, for a young family in Rosanna, Victoria.

This Week

A Longer Read

Design-Led Aboriginal Entrepreneurship Is Not New

Jirra Lulla Harvey - Koorie woman, First Nations business strategist, and judge of the TDF + Laminex Design Awards Collaboration category ...
Jirra Lulla Harvey
  13 hours ago

TDF Design Awards

ANNOUNCING The Winners Of The TDF + Laminex Design Awards 2021!

Last night we announced the winners and commended projects in the TDF + Laminex 2021 Design Awards in our online awards ceremony! Drum roll
Lucy Feagins
  21 hours ago

On The Market

An Iconic Melbourne Art Family’s Richmond Home Is For Sale

The family of beloved artist Mirka Mora are selling their contemporary, multi-level home, featuring a pool-with-a-view!

Architecture

A Remarkable Reworking Of A Humble Gold Coast Shack

ME Architects have extraordinarily reworked and extended this humble 1970s Gold Coast home.

Studio Visit

P0LY Designs : The Ultimate Pandemic Pivot Project

How Lara Fisher and Andy Kepitis turned their lockdown hobby into full-time business!
1.50

One Room Wonders

A Contemporary Chic Bedroom Makeover

A gorgeous, achievable room transformation - in partnership with Surround by Laminex.

Homes

A Photographer + Art Director’s Alistair Knox Home

Photographer Sean Fennessy, and art director Jessica Lillico's heart-warming Warrandyte mid-century family home, designed by Alistair Knox!

News

A Glamorous New Range Of Matte + Metallic Mixers

New additions to Phoenix Tapware’s popular Designer Sink Mixers collection will complement every element in your home.
Sponsored
44:00

Podcast

The Unconventional Career Path Of Interior Designer Yasmine Ghoniem Of YSG Studio, On TDF Talks

In this podcast conversation, host Lucy Feagins talks to the founder of YSG Studio and so-hot-right-now visionary leading the Australian int...

Shopping

An Epic Collaboration Between Two Local Icons, David Bromley + Review!

David Bromley collaborates with much loved local fashion label Review on a colourful new collection of apparel and accessories.

Shopping

Nau Releases 2021 Australian-Made Furniture Collection

Cult’s in-house Australian-made furniture and lighting brand, Nau, releases it 2021 collection designed by Adam Goodrum, Kate Stokes, Adam...

Stays

A Contemporary Reimagining of Robin Boyd’s Fenner House

Las Palmas by DUO Architects in association with Davis Architects is a Byron Bay hinterland home inspired by the owner's upbringing in Robin...

On The Market

A Santorini-Style Oasis (And One Of Our Fave Ever Homes) Is On The Market!

Artist Phoebe Rolleston’s architect-designed, breezy family home in Glen Iris, Melbourne is for sale. And we are so jealous of the new own...

News

An Online Fundraiser Featuring Work By 100+ Local Artists!

The annual B-Side art sale by artist-run, not-for-profit gallery Blindside is back to raise money for the arts community, this year featurin...
Sasha Aarons

Creative People

Building A Family Legacy On Local Manufacturing, With Abode Living

Creative director Amelia Marasco Adair takes us on a tour of the company's Camberwell HQ - featuring their production warehouse, offices +

Similar Stories

Gardens

A Sensitive Update For This Grand, 100-Year-Old Garden in Sydney

Numerous landscape designers have tended to this Mosman property over the past century.

Gardens

An Equally Functional + Lush Suburban Garden Makeover

The stunning garden of landscape designer Julian Bombardiere, in Kings Langley, NSW.

Gardens

A Swedish-Inspired Garden In Suburban Melbourne!

Landscape designer Penny Starr creates a garden for all seasons, for a young family in Rosanna, Victoria.

The Design Files acknowledge the traditional custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files – we would love to hear from you.

Please email us here.