Outdoor Renovations

Before and after: A rooftop garden transformed

This urban space has become an entertainers' dream that comes alive at night
Sue Stubbs

There was no question that wholesale changes were needed to this rooftop garden. With no shade, beige pavers and everything painted white, it was hot and far too bright.


The challenge was to dial down the heat. The offending tiles (above, left) were covered with merbau decking (centre), giving a softer, more liveable look which in the evening, is illuminated by oversized Bloom ‘Pill’ floor lamps from Cafe Culture and a scattering of LED fairylights bought at Bunnings. A marble ‘Lotus’ bowl from La Croix complements the fairy lights (right).

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(Credit: Sue Stubbs)

A pergola provides welcome shade and a wonderful spot for drinks at sunset. Both the decking and permanent shade structure came from the team at Pergola Land, who also drew up the plans for the project, submitted them to council and completed the installation. The pergola is an alloy frame with a multi-wall roof system, providing shade and UV protection. The frame was painted in Colorbond Paperbark, with the surrounds in the same hue, 

A redundant corner (above, left) was turned into an early evening dining spot with a Dedon table setting (centre and right). Planter pots from Garden Life loaded with sansevieria tricuspidata and crassula ovata pick up on the greenery seen just over the garden wall. The Smart & Green ‘Illuminated Egg’ LED lamp, from Cafe Culture, lights up to cast a warm glow and add to the varied lighting choices.

(Credit: Sue Stubbs)

The full-height were painted deep forest green to pick up on the many leafy plants that now enclose the deck – mostly natives such as grevillea and kangaroo paw, with a herb garden and a few exotics added for good measure. The sofa and matching chairs were bought in a sale at Eco Outdoor. A large Tait Outdoor floor cushion in Lobster Firewheel fabric adds a cheerful belt of colour.

Pretty but functional pieces complete the picture. Moroccan cane lamps from Pure & General provide pockets of light, (above, left), with a butterfly chair and ottoman from Pure & General providing casual seating (centre). A tree sculpture by Peter Mclisky from Tait Outdoor and an ‘Essential Egg’ pot, stocked with crassula ovate, both from Garden Life, illustrate the area’s use as both a place to relax and a garden to enjoy (right).

Ensure any lighting used outside is suitable for outdoor use, and that any electrical work is carried out by a qualified electrician. 


For more great outdoor entertaining ideas, our alfresco dining story will help!


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