Patsy Al Zayed came to Kuwait for the first time approximately 26 years ago. A Florida girl at heart who feels as equally at home in the backwoods swamplands of America’s south as she does in the finest of Kuwait locals, she was immediately inspired to bring the esthetic feel of her home terrain to the desert of Kuwait. Since then, she has made a name for herself by transforming the homes of many influential Kuwaitis– one backyard at a time.
For this interview, a few of the bazaar staff were invited to her own private rooftop garden to view the literal fruits of her labor. With a distinctly southern sweet-tea in hand she gave us a tour of the garden on an otherwise grey day, just before a dust storm came in. The first thing that one notices when entering her garden is the sheer scope of it. One instantly feels overwhelmed with the knowledge that it would take days to see it all. Through the various nooks and pathways in each direction, passed the topiaries of various sizes and shapes, beneath the overhead vines and over a few lily-pad-filled ponds, stocked with varieties of fish and turtles both, we arrive at a luxurious seating area to talk all things horticulture.
Quite simply: If her house were a showroom, you would have given her your business already. However, now that her business is set to expand beyond the scope that such home-spun cordiality will allow for, you will have to either see her portfolio for proof or anxiously wait with the rest of us for the local storefront and showroom they are soon to open in Lilly Complex in Shuwaikh. As a Landscape designer with three decades in the industry, she has made a name for herself by implementing her own unique elements and vision via water features, wood decking, addition of animals, as well as her expertise on plants in general. Particularly, it seems, the expertise of attempting to get various Plantae to adapt to the local climate. She speaks of the process of draining out or downing of plants’ roots with the casualness of somebody pulling out meat from the freezer to defrost. She knows plants and flowers, she knows what they need, and she knows how to blend them seamlessly to create the larger eco-system that you may only be able to see in your head. Lastly, she is happy to share this magic.
They are currently in the process of becoming a fully operational business with several different departments to meet your indoor and outdoor landscaping needs. The first is her tried and true, landscape design. In this capacity, they are a one-stop shop for everything that your project would need. Want a Koi pond reminiscent of a Japanese garden with plenty of foliage around it? No problem. Prefer bougainvillea draping over a third floor building down to the rock garden below for a Mediterranean feel? Done. How about a full-fledged faux mountain in the backyard where your garage is currently standing (and all the corresponding details of rebuilding said garage somewhere else)? She has done that too! Even the briefest of conversations with her show that this is where her passion truly lies: in making her customers’ dream home become reality by being involved in every level of the landscaping process. From concept, design, plant choice, installation, and if need be-maintenance as well, she is about as hands-on as it gets.
One other interesting point of note is that while they also do indoor atriums, terrariums, and greenhouse construction, they recognize these are not for everyone. Some people wish their nature and animal life to be more confined than that. As such, they also have an entire aquarium arm of the business to suit your needs. With everything from custom built coral reefs and underwater seascapes, they say that the sky is the limit in this regard. They also do all installation and maintenance here too if needed.
While we all eagerly anticipate the opening of her storefront soon, you may want to give her a call early, before they get too busy to take your call.
Gecko Gardens can be reached by phone at 9933 8221 or via email, [email protected]