Supergarden

Welcome to the Supergarden section of GroMór, where we have EXCLUSIVE extra footage of judge Gary Graham talking about his favourite plants in each episode, the list of plants used, a behind the scenes look at how the garden was made, and more!

Episode 4 | Thursday 11th June 2020 | RTÉ ONE AT 8PM

The brand new series of Super Garden continues with 5 new budding designers battling it out to secure a coveted show garden spot at Ireland’s premier garden festival, Bord Bia’s ‘Bloom’ in 2021.

This year a new housing development in a small village called Rowlestown, North County Dublin is home to the Super Garden Competition.

Our five designers will each be given an identical garden as their blank canvas to create their entry into Super Garden. Competing alongside each other for three weeks they will also help each other finish their garden designs.

Our second last Designer, Fran Byrne (60) is hoping to have the edge on his competition with over 40 years of years of experience working in landscaping which has given him a very laid back, chilled attitude. For homeowners Ciara and Martin this is their first ever family garden. The pressure is on Fran to design a garden with space for family BBQ’s and which that will also suit their three active children, Jack (11), Ellen (4) and Charlie (1 ½).

Having met the family & heard their requirements, Fran has created a bold ‘La Vista’ design, mixing three separate styles a) a contemporary style, b) a Moorish style AND a separate woodland style area for the kids. His garden design  also seeks to capture the aspect of Rowlestown Church – hence the ‘La Vista’ name. Is Fran trying to pull off too much in a small garden space?

Having applied to Super Garden last year but not made the cut this year is a big deal for Fran. In just 3 weeks he has to transform Ciara and Martin’s garden in Rowlestown. Can Fran strike the right balance with his mix of styles to take him all the way to Bloom 2021?

Designer: Fran Byrne (60), Co. Dublin

Occupation: Self Employed Landscaper

Laid-back Fran Byrne’s interest in gardening came at a young age inspired by his father Johnie who worked in the Botanic Gardens Glasnevin. At the age of 12 he started working in gardens part time and gardening became his passion. Fran is a father of 6 children ranging from 16 – 33. Youngest son Jake will join him during the garden build in Rowlestown.

Fran began designing and building gardens, setting up his own company in 2000. Unfortunately due to the recession he had to dissolve the company in 2007 but he continued to work in landscaping and is now currently self-employed. Taking part in this years Super Garden is a major opportunity for Fran & he views it as a big ‘second-chance’ in his life. For Fran landscape design is his life, he loves the quirky design styles of Dairmuid Gavin. He likes to take risks when it comes to introducing different elements and mixing different styles into garden design.

Fran met his wife Myriam in her homeland of Chile 10 years ago and they married in 2012. Extensive travel across Europe, South America and Egypt has given Fran a wealth of ideas for garden design. Fran’s seating area for Super Garden has been inspired by a visit to Chile where every town is based on a central square with a water feature, seating area surrounded by trees.

With over 40 years of experience in landscaping Fran is hoping he might have the edge on his fellow designers. Fran applied to Super Garden to prove to his family, his industry and himself that he can do it, not just compete but get to Bloom 2021.

Homeowner: Ciara (33) and Martin Harmon (34) children Jack (13), Ellen (4) and Charlie (1 ½)

Occupations: Part time Cleaner & Delivery Driver

Ciara (33) and Martin (34), originally from Swords, moved into their house in Rowlestown last October and the kids Jack (13), Ellen (4) and Charlie (1½) have settled in well. After renting for years they are delighted to have a forever home they can finally put their own stamp on. Martin is a trained horticulturist and loves working outdoors but due to the seasonal nature of the industry he decided to take full time work as a delivery driver. It’s always been a dream of Martin’s to design and build his own garden but financially the couple aren’t in a position to take on that challenge just yet. The garden hasn’t been touched since the family moved in so they are delighted with the opportunity to get their very own Super Garden.

Ciara and Martin would love a garden they could be proud to share with family and neighbours. In the summer they can’t wait to invite people over for BBQ’s. The kids have a trampoline which daughter Ellen loves so incorporating that into the garden is a must. Youngest son Charlie is learning to walk so they need a safe place for him to roam. Martin is also a trained stone cutter so he can’t wait to get involved with building the garden. With 3 young active kids they really want to make the best use of the garden. 

Fran’s design is really a dream come true for the family so he’s already a winner in their eyes. However, Martin is concerned Fran may not be able to complete his intricate design in the allocated time. Can Fran prove him wrong?

Design: La Vista

Fran is mixing different styles together in one small garden to try & create a family garden fit for all ages. In the seating area Fran is using bright colours inspired by the ‘Moorish’ style of Southern Spain and modern contemporary structured seating. A wooden built in bench in front of raised planters gives the family a perfect place to enjoy summer sun. A hanging table in the centre of the seating area also doubles as a water feature funnelling a stream through mosaic tiles down the centre of the patio.

From the patio entry to the separate Woodland area is through raised planters. Fran is adapting his plan to include the family’s trampoline, sinking it into the ground to remain hidden but accessible. A second seating area with a view of Rowlestown church also provides a handy way to keep an eye on the kids as they explore the garden.

The main seating area will be planted using more structural plants like alliums, agapanthus, buxus and colourful tulips. Mature trees like cypress, magnolia and acers under planted with helleborus, fatsias, grasses and ferns will bring the woodland to this urban garden.

BEFORE

AFTER

Get social with us and share your pictures using #gromor