From Under-Utilised to Ultimate Dreamscape in Mount Eden, Auckland

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After a troublesome renovation in the past, these homeowners opted for professional help to manage their extensive full-property landscape transformation.

Before After
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Setting the scene

Peter and Pea, the owners of this traditional 1920s bungalow in Auckland’s Mount Eden suburb, had previously taken on a renovation of their home’s interior but were unwilling to repeat the exhausting experience. They wanted to improve their property’s landscape, but with them both working long hours, Peter and Pea had little time (and even less inclination) to oversee another project. 

This time round, they wanted professionals to manage their extensive landscape renovation so they could enjoy the results without the stress. They reached out to Zones Landscaping and were connected with the talented Kate Ryan, Auckland Central’s local Landscaping Consultant. 

A clearly defined scope and accurate cost

It was important for Peter and Pea to feel confident about the costs involved. So during their initial consultation with Kate, they clearly outlined their expectations. Their garage and driveway were taking up a lot of valuable space and the walkway wasn’t ideally located; the couple wanted to repurpose their section as a dedicated living area with space to garden, entertain, and relax. 

While their plans and project scope were straightforward, Mount Eden is notorious for its volcanic soil which, as Kate explained, could mean unforeseen excavation requirements. Peter and Pea were aware that this could be an issue and were flexible about this aspect of the project. The original budget was around $150,000. After the detailed design and costing phases were completed, the final budget for the project was $200,000, including the necessary excavation. 

A rocky start for a smooth finish

Peter and Pea signed off on the plans, but work wasn’t scheduled to begin immediately. Following Kate’s advice, the start date was pushed towards the end of winter to create ideal conditions for both excavation and summer planting.  

To clear and prepare the section, the garage and driveway were removed and, as anticipated, underlying rock was a challenge. So Kate enlisted the help of excavation and rock-breaking specialists. Her clever solution to redirect the excavated stone to a rock wall builder at no cost saved Peter and Pea expensive dumping fees. Once the large boulders were removed the project ran smoothly.

Peter and Pea’s landscaping overhaul included a range of speciality design items - a unique rainwater tank by Rainmen, bespoke louvre roof, automatic gate, infrared heating - so Kate had to coordinate and manage a large team of specialist subcontractors to ensure every design element was properly executed. The team dug holes for fencing, installed piles to support a new extended deck, custom-cut louvre blades to fit between the varying roof heights of the main house and the existing extension, reoriented the pedestrian entrance, and finished off by planting a variety of native plants and raised garden beds.

Additional supplies for this project were sourced from Pacific Outdoor Solutions

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Exceptional outdoor living 

Kate’s superb design and management skills are evident throughout the finished landscape. Thoughtful decisions, such as the diverse yet complementary design styles - classic fencing and planting in the front to complement Mount Eden’s traditional look with native plants in the back to enhance the colourful landscape and invite birdlife to visit - have achieved the goal of creating a truly bespoke outdoor living area for Peter and Pea to enjoy.   

Infrared heaters and LED lights in the louvre enable year-round enjoyment, day or night. A shed that’s fully powered is the storage for Peter and Pea’s garden tools and an extra space to house their dryer. Custom screens with honeycomb centres for plants to grow surround the new deck to create privacy while leaving gaps under each screen so the beautiful garden planting remains visible. 

Final Words

Engaging Zones and partnering with Kate proved to be an excellent decision for Peter and Pea. Their new outdoor living space is not only functional with a fantastic design but it was masterfully executed, providing them with a stress-free landscape renovation. 

What was once an underwhelming space has been transformed into an al fresco dream that is open and welcoming with both sheltered outdoor living and new gardens to attract the birdlife and enjoy.

Would you like to discuss your landscaping ideas?

Get in touch for a free consultation with your local Landscaping Consultant.

This project was completed in
November 2022
Project description
Full landscaping
Auckland Central
New Zealand
Project duration
about 6 months
Cost estimate
Actual cost
Rock excavation
Interesting aspects
Custom screens
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Kate Ryan is Landscaping Consultant of Woodbury Landscapes Ltd, a franchisee of Zones Outdoor Renovations Ltd, doing business in Auckland.

Actual costs vary by project. Plan ahead to reduce the impact of industry changes or disruptions. For more information see here.

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