New gardens for Nostimo Greek Restaurant

Nostimo restaurant recently wrote a blog about the garden we installed! Check it out HERE and read our post below for a little more info on our process.

Last year, Greater Brisbane Gardens were engaged to design and install a garden for the Greek Club’s new restaurant Nostimo located in their club downstairs in South Brisbane.

Our team worked alongside KP Architects to a design brief that called for a garden that reflected a coastal feeling and incorporated herbs that the restaurant could use fresh in their cooking and olive trees because, you know, Greece.

The garden is a wild mixture of Australian natives, herbs, Salvias and advanced Olive trees. The plants selected perform well in the subtropical, Brisbane climate and were arranged into large swathes to achieve the relaxed, natural, coastal feeling.

To start with, the team excavated the beds to remove rubble, clay soils and to make sure there was a depth of at least 300mm of good soil in the shallower parts. Some parts are 500mm deep which provides excellent drainage and depth for the roots. We then installed 15 cubic metres of organic soil blended with mushroom compost, slow release, organic fertiliser and rock minerals.

The beds were mounded to make sure the advanced Olives had plenty of drainage and to present the plants in a more interesting way. Plants always look better when presented on a mound because it gives them texture, definition and interest. We try to use this principal in all of our gardens where possible. A drip irrigation system was installed, the mature olives were craned into position and the plants were placed out and installed and there beds were mulched with Tea Tree mulch.

The olives were 15 year old specimens with gorgeous lichen growing all over their trunks so a lot of care was taken to make sure they were planted correctly. We dug the holes with an excavator, filled the holes with a quality potting mix produced by soil scientist John Daly, that incorporates microbes and other goodies and blended it with the existing soil and the new soil we brought in. We mounded this in the bottom of the hole to create good drainage. Olives like to be moist but certainly not boggy so every precaution was taken to avoid this scenario. In that blend we also used Dolomite to achieve the right pH and slow release fertilisers.

We filled the holes with water and seaweed extract before planting and continually wet the roots balls and foliage with a dilute seaweed mixture while planting. We staked them up with three large stakes each and jute webbing to ensure they wouldn’t blow over while establishing.

A roof top garden was also installed above the entry to the Greek Club which sees Epipremnum (Devils Ivy) spill down through a hole in the sealing and pots through out the restaurant.

We were already doing garden maintenance for the Greek Community and Greek Club so we now also tend to the gardens and pots weekly. Being a wild garden, the maintenance is relatively low. We weed, spray the plants with a seaweed solution a couple of times a month and liquid feed once a month. The Salvias and flowers on the herbs bring beneficials to the garden that do most of the pest management for us so as a result, we have very minimal pest issues. The only plants that are treated for pests at the moment are the olives which are susceptible to lace wing while they are establishing and of course, everything is organic.

6 months on and the garden has been a roaring success and we are incredibly proud of them. The chefs are picking fresh from the garden daily, its reducing costs, food miles, providing organic produce and creates a beautiful view for people dining at the restaurant. What more could you ask for?

The food at the restaurant is to die for. So, make sure you get along, treat yourself and we hope you enjoy the gardens as much as we do.