We chat to Damian, the talented green thumb behind the flora of Britomart and he tells us about a special event that’s coming up.

What do you do around Britomart?
Other than taking lessons from what plants have thrived in this unique environment, my main focus when visiting the precinct is the liberation of sweet treats from Milse or Miann. It’s something I feel strongly about.

What other kinds of projects do you work on?
Most of my work is residential garden design, helping people to realise their visions for their own outdoor spaces. Sometimes it all seems a bit frivolous but if I can help improve someone’s mood or create a restful and restorative environment for them and their family, then I think that’s a solid win.

What is on the calendar at the moment that you feel passionate about?
Right now I am deeply involved with a great initiative, The Auckland Garden DesignFest, an open garden weekend on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 November that helps raise money for Ronald McDonald House, the Garden to Table Trust and the Rotary Club of Newmarket (who in turn support a raft of other great causes). We are indebted to our 20 extremely generous garden owners who have agreed to open up their private spaces in order to support this cause. There’s a fantastic range of garden styles, sizes and budgets, so something for everyone who may be contemplating tackling their own patch. I encourage anyone with a few hours to spare to get out and visit a few of these great outdoor spaces, each designed by a local garden design professional who will make themselves available to visitors.

If you weren’t in this job, what else might you be doing?
Erm…tough…I don’t think I have ever really considered much outside of a creative/collaborative field… maybe something to do with fresh water ecology or working toward making cities “greener”.

What do you love about what you do?
My primary enjoyment is a happy client. The other facet is the creative problem solving, and aligning form with function. There’s genuine sense of fulfilment gained by bringing something into existence that wasn’t there before. Then of course there’s the pleasure of meeting great people on a regular basis and the privilege of getting to work alongside talented and passionate kiwis.

What are your summer plans?
Reconcile if possible the conflict between avoiding excessive sun and the as yet unrealised ambition to achieve level 1 surfing proficiency with my daughter Stella, a journey begun last summer. Requires more effort!

Support Ronald McDonald House, the Garden to Table Trust and the Rotary Club of Newmarket by purchasing tickets to The Auckland Garden DesignFest here.