That’s the philosophy of Cork city woman Siobhan Keogh, who is the last designer to feature in the latest series of Super Garden on RTÉ1 tonight, Thursday at 8pm.
The 28-year-old is a graduate architect but her design is more focused on planting than hard landscaping. Siobhan hopes her R(etreat) & R(estorative) themed garden will bring her all the way to Bord Bia’s Bloom in 2021 — the prize for the winner of the series.
The chosen homeowner, mum Margaret Jones, is on the same wavelength as Siobhan — she would love a peaceful space to relax in at the end of a hectic day, while her 11-year-old daughter Katie just wants somewhere to dance.
Siobhan, who is also a part-time assistant lecturer, describes herself as quite competitive, even if it’s mostly with herself.
She won the Quercus Talented Student scholarship after graduating top of her class at UCC. In 2018, she achieved first class honours from the Master of Architecture program.
She loves to be creative in any way she can, garden design is a new passion, but it combines her love of working outdoors and nature.
Coming from a design background, Siobhan knows what she likes. Gardens that rely on large areas of hard landscaping or the use of unnatural products like fake grass are not her cup of tea.
For her, simple can also be showstopping.
The new house in Rowlestown is a fresh start for Margaret Jones, who, in the past, battled with drug addiction. Three years ago she decided to seek help and attended Tiglin in Brittas, an addiction rehabilitation centre.
It’s been a long road, but her end goal was always to give Katie a secure and loving home.
Now, working in Tiglin as a support worker, she’s really proud to be able to give back and help others.
Margaret and Katie have never had their own garden so they haven’t got around to doing anything in it. The dream garden for Margaret is somewhere she can just sit in peace to read. With family and friends living nearby she would love to be able to invite them over for a barbecue on sunny days.
Katie is always dancing, in the car, in the house everywhere, so as long as Siobhan leaves her a bit of space to do, that she’ll be happy. Margaret doesn’t know anything about plants so at the moment, the garden is just grass and plain walls.