A gravel garden brings an air of Zen to the smallest spaces – and it’s low-maintenance and waterwise to boot. Just keep it simple: “Don’t try to cram too much variety into a small space or it’ll look cluttered and bitty”‘ says Gordon. Use a paint effect, such as the rusted-wall look, to inject colour, cohesion and interest.
“Gravel is an ideal floor covering as it’s relatively cheap and allows storm water to percolate through,” says Gordon Stuart. Pale or neutral gravel gives the impression of space in a small area, Angela Langley notes. Buy small (5 – 7mm) sandstone or Table Mountain chips, or Duzi Gravel in KZN, lay some landscape fabric below the gravel to allow water through and stop weeds emerging from below. (You’ll still need to treat the weeds coming up from the gravel.) For the rusted-wall look ‘you can enhance or let real metal sheets rust, then seal them’ say architect Kobus Nieuwoudt of Nieuwoudt Architects, “It can be achieved by paint techniques on metal and off-shutter concrete.”