Reclaiming the Garden

How often do you see junk in peoples gardens? Old chairs, wooden planks and every so often an old bathtub will litter people’s lawns. Removing bulky objects can be an expensive and laborious task. Sometimes this will even build up until it becomes a bit of an eyesore, however there are plenty of ways to integrate discarded objects into your garden without even removing them.


I saw this beautiful gold painted bathtub in an old winter garden in Christchurch, New Zealand. After the earthquake countless homes were left badly damaged or destroyed completely. This affected gardens too, but nature has a great way of recovering and this particular garden has been transformed not lost. This old bathtub was painted in gold and placed in a disused glasshouse, as the plants have flourished they have almost engulfed the bathtub making it a central part of the winter garden.

Sustainable Design Ideas: Ellerslie Garden Show

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It may look like a moss covered traditional living room, but there is much more to this garden than meets the eye. If you look a little closer you may spot the salvaged plank table/greenhouse and the bottle plant pots attached to the walls.

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The garden was designed using reused materials and gained a considerable amount of attention and praise at the Ellerslie Flower Show in Christchurch, New Zealand.

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This garden was created by Grant Stephens & Rebecca Hammond, H & S Landscape Design. They named it REVOLUTIONISING REUSE.

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“Natives and perennials [plants] meet to create and enhance a contemporary courtyard garden that provides outdoor living while challenging the perception of reusing discarded objects.”

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It shows that reuse and salvage can be applied to landscape design as well as in the interiors. This garden is innovative and beautiful, allowing the public to gather great ideas for their own homes.

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Architecture and Salvage in Christchurch – Filling the Gap

Christchurch in New Zealand has suffered a number of devastating earthquakes in the past 2 years, which left almost 200 people dead and thousands without a home.
The city is in ruins and it will probably take years to rebuild as people wait for their insurance payouts and buildings continue to be demolished because they are unfit for renovation.
It is almost like a ghost town in parts, as areas remain cordoned off and many residents have moved to the outskirts of the city. However this is also an interesting and exciting time for some, who are using their creativity and their innovation to build on fresh ideas and breathe life back into derelict areas.


Re:START in central Christchurch

Christchurch Restart
Artists and architects are using the abundant open spaces to realise projects they may have never been able to take beyond the studio.
One of these brilliant projects is the Summer Pallet Pavilion in central Christchurch organised by Gap Filler – a creative urban regeneration initiative started in response to the September 4, 2010 Canterbury earthquake, and revised and expanded in light of the more destructive February 22, 2011 quake.
Gap filler collaborated with emerging designers, established professionals, architects and numerous volunteers to create this impressive venue.
They have created a community space from wooden crates. The self contained space is covered in plants and comprises of a stage, several counters/table and a large amount of seating. All this was made from used crates, salvaged boards and donated materials.
On the website it is described as ” a testament to the effectiveness of a collaborative and community-minded process. That creative ethos continues through its use, as the Pavilion will host live music, outdoor cinema and a wide range of other events from Thursday to Sunday and is also available for hire by any individual or community organisation at other times.”
It is incredible that even in a city that has been reduced to rubble, there is so much inspiration and innovation leading the drive to rebuild. Such support and involvement from the community is admirable and extremely moving.
It also shows how important creativity is in our society, without it we would be lost and without comfort or stimulation.

You can like the Pallet Pavillion on Facebook and see their website for events!