The power of wrought-iron and stone

Through the balustrade, stonework and wrought iron create instant history in this Lawrence Park garden.

The long architectural heritage of Ashlar stonework and wrought iron can give your yard immediate garden cred. You can do them in a major way, like this garden does so majestically. Or you can be like Mr. TG and I, who “got stoned” for less than $2500. For me, looking at gardens is like browsing at Holt-Renfrew (or Saks, for my American friends), then seeing if I can recreate the look at Value Village. Yep, I’m a picker from way back – both for ideas and for rubbish “found objects.”

This is another Lawrence Park garden from Through the Garden Gate in 2015. Am I lazily being doubly grateful for TTGG in my month of gratitude? Not quite. Stick around and see.

This is about as flowery as it gets in this garden. What you do get is a sense of place. Close to the house, this curved wall hugs a whirlpool. Beyond on the right, the dining area features a black metal table and chairs – matching the wrought iron window insert. That consistent use of a restrained palette of materials and colours is something to emulate at any budget.
Note the ashlar patterning of the stone facing behind the pool. This basket of stone flowers might actually be carved, but it could also be inexpensively cast. For sure, the barrel-shaped plinth it’s sitting on is cast concrete, topped with stone. That’s a smart way to combine the costly with the cost-conscious. We did it in our garden, for instance.
Lovely pool, with an infinity edge on the ravine side. Perhaps I don’t need to tell you: we did not manage to include one of these in our $2500 makeover. But, again, note the repeated materials in the loungers and the decorative medallions on that long wall. The “castle keep” in the far corner is charmingly frivolous, whose sole purpose is to lure people to climb it.
As they climb, this gorgeous curved railing prevents them from falling off the staircase. Even though it’s tucked out of sight around the back of the tower, I’ll bet people do see it often. The lure of that tower is exceedingly luresome.
This shot reveals the cast-concrete core of the screening wall we began with. It has a more contemporary look, don’t you think? And the simple handrail matches its character perfectly, while repeating the materials in the window screen. We can mix and match this way, as long as some points remain in common – colours and materials are only two.
Now I get to the gratitude part – grateful for friends such as Lynne, Barbara and, off camera, Leverne, all good-naturedly joining me in garden explorations, despite an all-day deluge and soggy feet. Thanks, gals! Let’s do it again next year.



  1. Thank you for this tour! I love wrought iron and would love to incorporate more of it in my garden. This garden is a spectacular example of how to use rock and wrought iron in a home landscape. It's stunning.

  2. This is lovely! I'm a huge fan of wrought iron and would choose it over pvc (ugh) or composite (meh) any day!

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