Take a look at the Port Macquarie Hastings U3A garden and there is no hint of its former state.
But turn back the clock to the summer of 2013 and the courtyard was weed-infested and overgrown.
Greg Dark transformed the garden with the help of the late Laurie Lardner who lent a hand with the construction work.
Today, the courtyard garden is colourful, even in winter, as Mr Dark continues to look after the garden.
The garden's six beds are filled with mostly semi-tropical plants, while a lasiandra provides shade.
"The aim at the beginning was to create colours using predominantly foliage," Mr Dark said.
Some flowers have been added over time.
The garden forms part of Port Macquarie Hastings U3A's centre at Lochinvar Place.
Retirees from all walks of life come together to learn from each other through the University of the Third Age.
"You can sit out here and enjoy a quiet chat with a friend," he said.
Mr Dark is the treasurer of Port Macquarie Garden Club and his wife Alvina is also a keen gardener with a focus on their home garden.
The garden at home wraps around their villa with a path to show the way.
There is also a courtyard garden area.
Mrs Dark gardens daily if the weather is fine.
"It's my hobby, and when I can get out in the garden, I'm happy," she said.
"This is where I belong. I only do housework when it's raining and I can't get out in the garden."
The cottage-style garden is blended with shrubs and trees, and there is a small vegetable patch.
They had trouble with feral deer eating the hibiscus until Mrs Dark sprayed a special garlic mixture on the plants.
A succulent garden is Mrs Dark's pet project.