By Matthew Appleby
Garden design maverick Diarmuid Gavin has created a rolling Irish landscape inspired by Jerry Hall — the model and former wife to Rolling Stone Mick Jagger.
Hall was the muse for Gavin’s stunning €80,000 (£54,332) dream garden for County Carlow couple Pat and Mary Gaynor as part of hit RTE series I Want a Garden.
Gavin, whose Chelsea 2008 design features a working drinks bar, will show off images and footage of his latest gardens at the Grand Designs Live show at Birmingham NEC on 5-7 October.
He said: “Jerry modelled for us and we recreated her as grass mounds 150ft (45.7m) long and 50ft (15.2m) wide. It was simple, beautiful and great fun to do.
“We used golf-course people who were used to shaping and moulding to create huge hills. She gave me great liberty with her assets. We tell the story of how Jerry is the muse walking through the landscape and deciding to lie down. It was such a sensation in Ireland — helicopters were going over on sightseeing trips.”
Gavin added that he wanted to avoid controversy at his Chelsea show garden for 2008. The designer revealed plans for a New York
art deco garden with a miniature Chrysler Building pavilion featuring old roses.
“It won’t be controversial at all this year. It’s perhaps not so contemporary as I thought, but it’s all lit up and I’ve had great fun using natural materials you wouldn’t associate with garden including accordion gates from old lifts.” The garden also has a bar and features old romantic roses. “But I’ll have the keys to the bar,” Gavin said.
He has moved back to Ireland but is visiting England at least once a week and retains a London
studio. Gavin is visiting South Africa and Cuba next month for TV work and inspiration.
The Dublin-born gardener also revealed he will be resident gardener on Alan Titchmarsh’s new ITV chat show, due to launch in September. And Gavin is also working on another equestrian show, which will feature Zara Philips, after branching out into horse riding on TV fundraiser programme Only Fools on Horses last year. He added that he is planning a series in the US and will return to UK screens in 2008 in a big way — but was tight-lipped on details. “I’m sworn to secrecy,” he said.
Gavin said he expected garden programmes to come full circle and return to design-based shows soon. “Everything goes round in cycles. It’s organic fruit-and-veg growing at the moment and back to more traditional herbaceous borders. But then it will be back to a more design-based trend. At the moment they’ve stopped all makeovers on the BBC due to charter renewal because they’re not wanting frivolous spend on licence money.”
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