Chris Marsh is an Auckland-based landscaper and keen outdoorsman. He was drawn to landscaping during his university architecture studies and likes that it combines his design skills with his natural affinity for the outdoors and plants.

Chris founded his landscaping business, Greenroom Projects, in 2013. He hasn’t looked back since, growing his business and client-base whilst managing a small team of hard and soft landscape professionals. Greenroom Projects manages landscape projects from start to finish providing design, planning, decking, fencing, retaining, paving, concreting, planting and maintenance services (to name a few!). From Chris’s perspective, being a small team of passionate people is an advantage as his clients get to talk to the people who are making the decisions and doing the work.

Chris was recommended by Auckland Landscape Supplies to create the Barfoot & Thompson sponsored ‘Street’ at the Auckland Home Show in 2015. The company has continued this role every year since, and he reckons the Home Show really boosted his company’s profile and led to a lot of business. His success with the Home Show also led to Chris featuring on the TV One Series ‘Our First Home’ as a landscape garden judge – and after watching the footage (saved on Chris’s MySky box at his home) I can attest that he is a natural on camera and features a very cheesy grin.
Chris was approached by Mitre 10 in 2007 as a DIY personality to present their series of gardening and landscape videos. These are available to view on the Mitre 10 YouTube channel if you need some help in the garden or want to see that cheesy grin for yourself!
Aside form his busy landscaping enterprise, Chris loves packing up the ute with fishing gear and getting away from it all. Common destinations include the Bay of Islands, where his grandma owns a place, or the Coromandel. From these bases he normally hits the rocks or launches his little 389 Stabicraft.

Chris’s passion for landbased angling is obvious if you consider the lengths he and his mates go to in pursuit of finding the perfect spot. During their last annual October venture to Whangamumu on the Cape Brett peninsula (which they affectionately call ‘Rocktober’), the boys carried in a large Makita stereo complete with spare batteries to blast music, bushwhacked for hours in the dark, dived into rockpools to collect kina for burley, and slept on exposed promontories in tiny tents. These efforts were rewarded however, with some fine snapper engulfing their straylined baits as they swam up the kina burley trail.

Although Chris does his fair share of inshore livebaiting, softbaiting and straylining on his little Stabicraft, he never shies away from the opportunity to jump on larger and more ‘lavish’ vessels. He’s covered many nautical miles on yachts and loves cruising under sail – however he’s the first to admit he doesn’t really have a clue about how to sail as he just follows orders to pull this rope or turn that winch!

He remembers with a chuckle one yachting trip to Great Barrier Island especially well. On the start of that weekend, he and a bunch of mates left Auckland early in the evening and decided to motorsail all the way to Arid Island on the back coast of Great Barrier – an unforgiving distance of roughly 65 miles. Not only was the wind over 20 knots, there was a nasty wind-againsttide through the Colville Channel and the yacht was barely making 5 knots of speed. The fellas eventually made it to the anchorage at 4am, weary from their voyage and a bottle of Mt Gay rum. Chris recounts that one of the guys woke up at around 6am, full of eagerness to get underway again and jig up some kingfish.

He obviously hadn’t checked the forecast, as by the time he single-handedly progressed to the kingi pins it was now blowing 25 knots.

The rest of the boys including Chris were rolling around in various states of ‘seasickness’ on the deck, and to add insult to injury not even a single kingi was on the chew! Luckily Chris says the trip did improve as they reached calm waters in Port Fitzroy and caught kingfish up to 15kg inside the harbour, slow-trolling livebait around huge schools of slimy mackerel.

In conjunction with his stories, Chris was also kind enough to offer up a couple of spring landscaping tips.

Landscaping tips
• Give all your cherished plants a nice feed (such as fish frames!) so they can maximise on spring growth.
• Make sure to trim your hedges back hard before they put on their new burst of growth otherwise they will quickly grow in an unruly manner.

Article by: Nick Jones