This Garden Embodies the Beauty of Second Chances
There are many things one learns in the course of building a home. A dwelling that meets all the needs of its occupants and stands the test of time requires not just careful study, but a vision for the future as well. Together with passion and creativity, there must be an apparent willingness to embrace change if the design must be successful.
The garden of this home in a gated residential enclave in the metro is a shining example of the beauty of second chances. Landscape designer Rading Decepida entered the scene when the owners wanted their garden renovated. At the time, Rading was doing the garden of the village clubhouse, which the owners liked. Located just a few meters away, the house itself is elegantly unassuming, belying the lush hideaway that wraps around the property.
“The design before this was very minimalist, with hedges all around the fence,” Rading points out, “It was quite flat and bare, so I wanted to make it lush to suit the Mediterranean style of the house,” he continues. He decided to elevate the garden with his signature riprap walls brimming with greens. “I raised the whole thing to give one the feeling of the garden hugging you as you walk through it,” he explains.
To the left of the main door, a lone wood bench sits amidst a backdrop of plants in one corner. The small setting functions as an invitation to explore the surroundings. Piedra pinoy stepping pads lead towards it, veering to the right to open up to a side garden. Interspersed with tiny Kyoto plants, the pavers give the pathway a streamlined look. “The owners wanted a low maintenance garden,” Rading notes, “And since the area is quite shady, these stepping pads are a great option in place of grass,” he furthers.
Two sitting areas stand to the side of the house, opposite a linear koi pond. The soothing sounds created by the water perfectly complement the ferns, palms, and yuccas that dot the periphery. Rading used jars as accents to break the monotony of greens. Raphis, spathiphyllum, and other tropical plants complete the setting, which ends with a small, freestanding glass structure with a bar and entertainment area. To its right is a rectangular pool set with deep blue tiles. Instead of a bare backdrop, a verdant wall overflowing with plants surrounds it, held up by an adobe riprap to give the illusion of height.
“It’s always much easier to start from ground zero,” Rading explains. “Renovations are quite expensive and there are a lot of things to consider, such as electrical and water lines, drainage, and maintaining what needs to be preserved. It’s also important to know botany—which plants to use, where to put them, and how to properly care for them.” In any case, all those things were carefully considered by the designer to come up with an outdoor space that is not only beautiful, but one that the homeowners can enjoy for many years to come.