Nursery foundation

Client: Southern Rainforest

Suburb: Launching Place

Project: Nursery fill pad, stone retaining wall, screw piles and concrete slab

Duration: 14 weeks

Scope: Raise building envelope above 1 in 100 year flood level, retain fill pad with stone walls, then use steel and concrete to provide solid foundation





Bluestone capped dry-stone retaining wall

Client: Damian.

Suburb: Don Valley.

Project: Stone retaining wall.

Duration: 3 weeks.

Scope: Dry stone retaining wall with bluestone capping and base of wood fired oven.




Low maintenance luxury

Client: Winifred

‘I am pleased to say that I have been extremely satisfied with the work carried out by Brett Cowan and Southern Rainforest. The landscape, design & construction work is of excellent standard & I have no hesitation recommending Brett for this type of work.’

Suburb: Glen Iris

Project: Back Garden

Duration: 8 weeks

Scope: Transform labour intensive yard into low maintenance and enjoyable garden


Backyard was a mix of different materials and was constant upkeep, as well as not being very useable. Bluestones were reused as an edge, whilst other materials were recycled.


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Footings were installed and blockwork constructed. Due to narrow access, all material had to be wheeled in by hand.

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After compaction, reinforced concrete slab was installed and paving laid, grouted and sealed. Other additions were, synthetic turf, clothesline, sideway stepping stones, bluestone path, steps, edge and mulching.



Clinker wall and driveway


Clients: Anh & Danh

Suburb: Glen Iris

Project: Front garden

Duration: 8 weeks

Scope: Front brick retaining wall needed replacing and driveway needed widening to suit clients growing family.


After 50 years of weathering, retaining wall and driveway needed replacing.



20120830_173420As the clinker bricks are no longer in production they were cleaned and reused, this added character and matched house. Other additions were, paved driveway on concrete base, lighting, irrigation, instant turf, mulching and planting.






Balwyn Backyard

Clients: Sally & Rob

Suburb: Balwyn

Project: Backyard

Duration: 5 – 6 weeks

Scope: Clients had tried previously to landscape garden, though were extremely time poor and as such could not complete project. Being engineers they designed lay out and positioning of wall. Was quite complex due to clients not wanting drains or grates and so all paved area had to fall away from house and at the same time not pool along wall.

Process: On east side of house  paving commenced with a small courtyard


Then work commenced on westside of house, pool and paving was to remain, though everything else was to go.

Then clean up began and the construction of the great wall began.


Once complete concrete base was installed.


Then paving of 800 x 400 sandstone was laid.

Balwyn front garden


Clients: Sally & Rob

Suburb: Balwyn

Project: Front garden

Duration: 4 – 5 weeks

Scope: Client’s had a very busy lifestyle and over 20 years had no time for their front garden. They requested a low maintenance garden and new driveway.



First glance, 20 years of growth


After vegetation was removed, shaping and excavation began.


Concrete base was then installed.


Then a 3 blend mix of clay pavers were selected. At the time it seemed too much, though as the photos display the 3 blend  creates a striking appearance.


Paving complete, now time for planting.

Project complete and clients happy.