Friday, 29 January 2010

Plant Profile: Lomandra longifolia 'Tanika'

A great tough plant that is almost indestructible, Lomanda 'Tanika' is easy care and very drought tolerant. It is great used on mass and needs very little maintenance other than the odd haircut. It gets to about 600x650mm high.

COD Delights

The old classic the Cape Cod chair is a great way to add colour and impact to your outdoor area. The chairs  by COD: Classic Outdoor Designs (made in Wanaka) are available in any colour on the Resene colour palette. These chairs were recently featured on the front cover of  Resene's Habitat magazine.

Thursday, 28 January 2010

Update for Tiritiri Lodge

I have spent some of the morning taking some shots of the wonderful Tiritiri Lodge. Seeing your work come to fruition is a hugely satisfying part of begin a Landscape Architect. It does make such a difference to have a client who is a true gardener and credit must be given to Stephanie and Denis as they have taken what I created for them and continued to let it develop and evolve. Here is a sneek preview of the updated photographs before I update them to my website portfolio!

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Cover It Up!

 If you haven't got the funds for a new BBQ then why not spruce up your old one with one of these fantastic NZ BBQ covers! 

"We couldn't help but think that the bbq – the centrepiece of the great Kiwi outdoor dining space – spent 18 hours a day and eight whole months a year smothered in a rubbish bag. So we asked ourselves, if you’re going to invest time and talent and moolah in the bbq and the whole picture-perfect, indoor-outdoor flowy thing, why the heck not find a way of protecting your steel baby from the elements that didn’t then turn around and throw style to the wolves?"

Build Your Own Vegetable Garden

With a move towards growing your own vegetables, these are a great option for anyone with limited space or perhaps if you are renting and want to be able to take them with you when you leave. They are also very cost effective and don't require building skills to put them together. If you want to create a no dig vegetable garden, layer a thick layer of newspapers in the bottom of the bed, then about 100mm of pea straw or leaves and then top up with compost. It is best to set this up in the winter months giving you time for the compost to settle. The idea is that you continue to layer compost on top. You will find some quick titivating with your hand as you replant is all the garden needs! I think I might get myself some of these!

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Fantastic Photography!

Recently our studio was featured in Homestyle magazine. Some people definitely have a knack with a camera and Johanna Hughes is one of these lucky people! Her blog is well worth a look and she has a fantastic portfolio ranging from commercial to wedding photography. She managed to make me feel quite at ease in front of the camera which I must admit, I normally find quite a daunting experience!

Friday, 22 January 2010

Happy Bithday 'Georgie P Outside'

I am actually 2 days early but knowing I have a wedding tomorrow and the head won't be up too much I thought it best that I post this today! It takes a while to get the hang of blogging but I'm pretty sure I've got it now so expect heaps more posts over the next year! I'm always on the look out for inspiration so be sure to contact me if you have any ideas or anything you can offer to the site. Thanks for keeping in touch. Georgie

New Zealand Sustainability Resources

Here is a list of some interesting resources in terms of sustainability that I would like to share

ECOBOB: Information of sustainable living

Eco Design Advisor :A fantastic FREE service operating from eight Councils - Waitakere, Auckland, North Shore, Hamilton, Tauranga/Western Bay of Plenty, Kapiti Coast, Nelson, and Queenstown lakes District. The Eco Design Advisor is a specialist, providing free energy, water and material related advice on home building projects, to ensure better use is made of resources.

Eco Power: Eco friendly power, heat and plumbing solutions.

Energy Wise: is EECA's consumer programme that provides information and funding for householders so they can make the most of energy efficiency, energy conservation and renewable energy.

Level: The Authority on Sustainable Building is a BRANZ resource which offers more technical advice for the building professional.

Smarter Homes
: Is aimed at homebuilders and has been developed by Consumer Build, Ministry for the Environment, Dept of Building and Housing and Beacon Pathway.

Seed Building: A Wanaka company providing advice and guidance on all aspects of sustainable building.

Sustainable Building in the Queenstown Lakes District

Sustainable Wanaka: A local charitable trust which aims to actively promote and manage the integration of ecological, social, cultural and economic goals for our community's sustainable development.

Beautiful Paints For Healthier Living Environments

Using simple, honest ingredients such as chalk, china clay, plant oils and tree resins, BioPaints’ environmentally friendly products give you the protection you need for your interior and some exterior surfaces.

Georgie's a Greenie!

In case any one wonders why I'm so madly blogging on sustainability issues today, I am in fact having a change around of my website set up. I am bringing all the Eco Design information from our website in to our blog to make it easier to search and to simplify the website. Make sure you keep and eye on our website over the next while as there will be major updates on photos and information!

Build a Rain Garden

Rain gardens are shallow depressions, typically planted with plants, strategically located to collect, infiltrate and filter rain that falls on hard surfaces like roofs, driveways, alleys, or streets to minimise negative impacts of excessive runoff from these surfaces on lakes and streams. Landcare Research has some great information and link to help you in designing a rain garden so well worth having a nosey!

Six Ways In Which We Make A Difference

We are continuously seeking and finding new ways to help our studio have less impact on our environment. These are some of the ways that we are doing this, but we would love to hear from you if you have more ideas that we can introduce to our business. Hopefully you find this list inspiring and use it in your own home and office - go on, we challenge you!
  • Rubbish Bins and Recycling. There are no longer rubbish bins inside our studio. To throw out rubbish one must walk outside, past the compost, shredder and re-use bins. We find that we now have very little rubbish now going to land-fill!
  • Bokashi. We have a small composting bin in the studio to take care of our food scraps and coffee grinds and we don't use the insinkerator.
  • Printing. We use 100% recycled paper in our new duplex printer (meaning that both sides of the paper are printed on). Where possible, we are providing our clients with electronic files for plans and invoices, reducing the need to print.
  • Shredder. We shred all paper but only once both sides are used (if approprate). This is then composted in Georgie's Worm Farm and ends up as garden mulch.
  • Hot Water. We have switched of the water cylinder as it is only required for washing hands. With the introduction of 'Natural Instinct' organic handwash and some antibacterial hand gel, we feel clean enough and our dish drawer keeps our dishes clean as required.
  • Heating. Our fantastic new studio is well insulated but when we feel the need for heat we use our heat pump on a timer system. In summer we use through drafts instead of the air conditioning, enjoying our beautiful Wanaka air.

Bokashi Composting Systems

Recycling kitchen and garden waste has never been easier and with the help of Bokashi NZ Ltd and its range of environmentally friendly products, it’s easy to make a sustainable difference to your local environment - at home, at work and at play. We have used one of these systems in the Georgie P studio for over a year now and they are fantastic. We no longer need to use the insinkerator to dispose of waste. These are a great option for someone with a small kitchen or limited space. As we don't have very large quantities of kitchen waste it does take us a while to fill the bin but this is not a problem due to no foul odours! What's more, my vegetable garden is loving the compost that these create!

Worms Worms Glorious Worms

I use a worm farm to dispose of all my fruit and vegetable scraps as well as any paper not suitable for the recycling bin. The worms break down my compost quickly creating the perfect mulch for my organic vegetable plots in about 3-4 months. Amazingly, there is no smell created from the bins so they are great for even the most compact site.
You can easily make your own bin or purchase a ready made one such as a Can-O-Worms.
Our local worm farm based in Cromwell, Central Wormworx, can supply worms for your worm farm and is well worth a visit for interest sake - a great hit with children! Check out Worm Farms for some brilliant information.

One For Your Bucket List?

I've just been sent a link to Dalrachney Stations fantastic venture- The Lindis Ridge Hut. The Lindis would have to one of my favourite landscapes especially in the way the light plays on the hills. As they say "a picture says a thousand works". Seeing the photos of the inside of the hut brings back some great childhood memories. Looks like a must do and see to put on my list!

Thursday, 21 January 2010

They've Got Architecture Sorted!


Here's one of the great projects we have been involved with that has been designed by Steve Humpherson at Sorted Architecture in Wanaka. Check out their website to find out more!

And More Kitchens!

It's been a while since I last researched outdoor kitchens and I'm pleasantly surprised at what has now become available. These are a huge thing in the USA as I discovered on my recent travels and are becoming more and more requested by our clients. Hopefully more availability will bring the prices down as they are are not cheap to install! For the moment, I'll just keep dreaming!

Kitchens in the Outdoors

Slowly the availability of outdoor kitchen products in New Zealand is starting to catch up with the rest of the world. Both of these products are available from Xteriors

Book Review- 'Pruning the esential guide'

This is a fantastic little book and one I have in my own collection. It gives a great run down on the basics of pruning with clear easy to follow drawings and very little reading to do! With a section dedicated to equipment, shrubs, trees, fruit trees, hedges, climbers, roses and the times at which to prune, it is a valuable resource for anyone, even if they have only a few plants in their garden. 'How' and 'when' do I prune? are some of the most commonly asked questions I get- this book will stop the task being so daunting!

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Join the bloggers!

Just slightly off the track....... If you have some interesting information to share then why not start up your own blog? This is a great way to increase a business profile or indeed have a lot of fun. If you are new to the game then I know someone who can help. Julia is a self taught blogging pro. Check out what she can do for you!

Nature Inspired Wall Graphics


I get endless comments on the stick on trees that stand in my office. There is a fantastic range of stick on vinyl available now days as a cheap and easy way to decorate a room. Even better if you are renting of have children with changing likes and dislikes as they can be easily removed. I stumbled across The Vinyl Room which has a fantastic range of stickers but especially those relating to nature, enabling you to create a simple connection between your house and garden.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Kiwiana Collectables

This fun and quirky shop has a range of retro and kiwiana antiques. Keep an eye out for fun collectables to furnish that deck or create a feature in your garden. Many of the products are available for purchase on line.
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