Concept to Delivery
DESIGN, BUILD, AND MAINTAIN
PRECIOUS RESOURCE TRANSFORMING A RUGGED SLICE OF COAST
FOCUS ON SOIL AND IRRIGATION
FORUM ON TOUR
LET’S HEAR IT FROM
WELCOME Concept to Delivery DESIGN, BUILD, AND MAINTAIN
November/December 2015 | Volume 1, Issue 3
PRECIOUS RESOURCE TRANSFORMING A RUGGED SLICE OF COAST
FOCUS ON SOIL AND IRRIGATION
FORUM ON TOUR
LET’S HEAR IT FROM ’Tis the season, and Pro Landscaper Africa is in the festive spirit as we bring you an issue packed with exciting projects and inspiration to last you far into the new year. Following on from the success of our UK and Gulf publications, Pro Landscaper Africa is quickly establishing itself as a valued platform for the industry to exchange ideas and find inspiration in one place. We pride ourselves on our commitment to the landscaping community in southern Africa and are constantly in search of business ideas, innovative trends, the latest products, and inspiring projects and initiatives that support and progress our landscaping community. This month, Marcel Oudejans and Mike Laws, whose combined business acumen can inspire and enlighten us as industry professionals, both return as contributors to our business
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segment. Megan Taylor is a lecturer at Unisa and is in the process of writing her doctorate, which highlights irrigation and water management. We welcome her to our opinions section, where she provides some pertinent views regarding water management in South Africa. Our products pages also highlight the importance of water in the region, paying tribute to soil and irrigation products that are not only highly recommended on the market but are also both waterwise and environmentally aware. We have exciting projects to show you, including the residential Houghton estate by GREENinc, a commercial GREEN university piece by Outline Landscape Architects and an international portfolio by Planning Partners International for Azuri Resort Town on the idyllic island of Mauritius. The interview in this month’s edition is with
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CNdV’s multi-award-winning Tanya de Villiers and Herman de Lange, who tell us about a thrilling new venture they are embarking on with the launch of the cndv landscape architects division. If you have any exciting projects or would like to contribute to our magazine in any way, I would love to hear from you. We also publish an application for your smartphone and an online version of the magazine, so it is easy to keep up to date with all the latest news during the festive season. We look forward to the new year and an exhilarating 2016 in the landscaping industry. Rest assured, Pro Landscaper Africa will be there to capture its many moments. Look out for our January edition. You can email all enquiries and feedback to Chanel.Besson@eljays44.com. I look forward to hearing from you.
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Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
UKâ€™S #1 LEADING LANDSCAPE EVENT
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November/December 2015 Volume 1 Issue 3 6
Out & About
Industry news from southern Africa All about SAGIC Cape Green Forum tour of Bedford Garden Festival & Cape Town Flower Show preview
OPINION 12 Sustainable Urban Design For A Water-Scarce Future
Megan Taylor says the green industry must pull together to tackle water deficit
Don’t Become A Member Of The ‘Bakkie Club’ Lee Burger says clients can be your best friend – or your worst nightmare
BUSINESS TIPS 14 The Business Of Mobile Marketing
Mike Laws highlights the advantages of using the Please Call Me service
What Do Your Customers Want? Marcel Oudejans says you can learn a lot from a certain Mel Gibson movie
INTERVIEW 17 Let’s Hear it From
Directors Tanya de Villiers and Herman de Lange lift the lid on their new venture – cndv landscape architects
PORTFOLIOS 21 Luxury Living
GREENinc gets the angles right on The Houghton apartment block development
Walk This Way
Out Of The Blue
Outline Landscape Architects creates a stunning promenade as part of the new dining hall at the University of Pretoria Planning Partners International transforms a rugged slice of coast on the island of Mauritius to create a new resort town
PRODUCTS 31 Soil 32 Irrigation PEOPLE 33 Trading With... STIHL 34 Little Interview www.prolandscaper.co.za
17 Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
NEWS SHED ‘Extinct’ plants discovered within Cape Town boundaries Rare and endangered plants, some thought to have been extinct, have been discovered within the boundaries of Cape Town – mostly on private land. CapeNature and the City now hope to provide incentives to landownwers, such as rate rebates, to try to get them to conserve the plants. The City said these new discoveries came at a time when South Africa was facing “a crisis of fynbos being lost to invasive plants and urban sprawl”. One of the surprise discoveries was the critically endangered Psoralea glaucina (pictured below) in the northern part of the city. A new population of endangered Adenogramma rigida was also discovered there. The plant was thought to be extinct before
being rediscovered in 2009. A new population of Gladiolus griseus, one of the rarest gladiolus species, was found in dunes near Silwerstroom. The flowers had been reduced to fewer than 250 plants. Renosterveld, a lowland fynbos, has been hammered by agriculture. Less than 5% of renosterveld in the Swartland remains, with less than 1% formally conserved. The Botanical Society said these pockets of renosterveld, with three or four larger pockets in the city, were key to preserving the last populations of, among others, Watsonia strictiflora, with one population, Protea odorata, fewer than 10 plants, and Leucospermum grandiflorum, with 15 plants. beta.iol.co.za/capetimes
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
Site reveals its top regional plants for South Africa If you are wondering which plant is best suited for your province at the moment, the Life Is A Garden website has released its latest ‘Top Plants Of The Month’ list. The list, voted on by South African growers, reveals what topped the poll for December. The top choice for Eastern Cape was Gaillardia ‘Arizona Sun’. The plant does not mind poor, dry soil, needs moderate water and, once established, is drought tolerant. Another plant on the Eastern Cape list is Philodendron
Xanadu (which also proved the most popular choice for Gauteng). Free State’s top choice was Poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima). Mandevilla Sundaville Cosmos White was among the favourite plants in KZN. A variety of rose – Not Simply Pink – was among the top choices for North West region, while Phlox drummondii ‘Grammy Pink and White’ was one of the favourites in Western Cape. For a full list, visit http://lifeisagarden.co.za
Landscaping proceeds apace at The Castle of Good Hope Urban Landscape Solutions (ULS) has provided an update on how works are proceeding on The Castle of Good Hope project in Cape Town. The locally based company has been involved in replacing all the lawns on the bastions, parapet walls and external moat banks. The work consists of removing a 300mm layer of soil from all lawns and, to date, 1,300m³ of topsoil has been removed from the site by means of mechanical lifts and shoots. After topsoil has been removed, the areas are replenished with fertile
compost. ULS sister company New Horizen is growing Buffalo sprigs to be planted from March 2016. The castle’s outside walls also need to be cleared of alien vegetation and weeds. Currently, the castle bastions are watered by hand but ULS is investigating the possibility of using water from the moats to install an automatic irrigation system. The project needs to be completed by September 2016 when the castle hosts the inaugural Cape Town Flower Show (see page 11). www.urbanlandscape.co.za
Sustainable residential design: improving water efficiency
Because of recurring drought conditions, it is becoming increasingly less viable to use potable (drinkable) water to irrigate landscapes. According to the Sustainable Sites Initiative, irrigation of residential landscapes accounts for more than a third of residential
water use. The initiative said that by using ‘integrated site design’, sustainable residential landscape architecture practices can not only cut energy usage but also improve water eﬃciency. Integrated site design is a framework for increasing the quality of the built environment
Cape Town’s ‘smart park’ project is hailed a success The landscape architect behind the design of one of Cape Town’s new ‘smart parks’ has been hailed for her work. Park NY110 in Gugulethu was built as part of Cape Town City Parks Department’s Smart Parks Project, which led to the Institute of Landscape Architecture in South Africa (ILASA) awarding the department one of its merit awards of excellence. Belinda Walker, mayoral committee member for community services and special projects, congratulated Nicole Strong, a landscape architect in the department
who also won an ILASA award for her planning and design work on the park, and her colleague Bradley Burger. She said: “They are setting a new standard for the development of parks in South Africa.” The custom-designed play equipment was constructed to suit a broad range of ages and incorporates mounds to increase opportunities for younger children to play. Trees were planted in groups to provide shade for picnicking and formal rows were planted to provide a shaded avenue along the main
and involves maximising existing natural systems to minimise water use. These designs signiﬁcantly cut the need for centrally distributed water. Decreased water usage also means homes and businesses are more resilient to shifts in the availability of water and climate change. Businesses can promote the inﬁltration, storing and recycling of water, and limit the use of valuable potable water for landscapes. Bioswales, rainwater gardens, and local sustainable water recycling and drip irrigation systems can all be used to eﬃciently conserve water. These systems can recycle and reuse greywater (and even blackwater) for landscape maintenance. Homes that include natural
stormwater management technologies, such as bioswales or bio-retention ponds, which inﬁltrate and remove pollutants, not only better manage stormwater runoﬀ but also reduce the massive energy costs associated with running complex stormwater management systems.
route for joggers and walkers. Synthetic turf was used as the playing surface on two ﬁve-a-side soccer pitches plus a netball/basketball court. The edges to these courts are deﬁned by low walls, where spectators can sit and watch the games shaded by large
trees. The park had previously been a bare space. The city’s ﬁrst three smart parks were built in Khayelitsha, Blikkiesdorp and Gugulethu. A further three will be developed in Atlantis, Nomzamo and Seawinds in 2016. beta.iol.co.za/capetimes
Submit your news stories to Pro Landscaper Africa If you would like to submit any stories regarding African landscaping projects, floating tenders, contract awards and new trends in green design and build, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet to @prolandscaperCB
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
NEWS NEWS IN BRIEF Bethlehem school gets help in the garden
Twenty Woolworths staﬀ, in partnership with Food and Trees for Africa (FTFA), visited the Impumelelo primary school in Bohlokong, near Bethlehem, to help in its permaculture garden. The FTFA’s Sarah Miller said: “The store has provided funding and we have supplied trees and garden tools.” www.news24.com
KZN botanist honoured by lifetime award
Dr Elsa Pooley has been awarded the John Medley Wood Medal by Durban Botanic Gardens Trust for her contribution to KZN’s ﬂora. The award recognises exceptional people in the ﬁelds of botany and horticulture. www.ecr.co.za
Kenyan youths renounce crime to protect forests
Youths are helping to protect trees in Kenya from loggers. It is illegal to fell trees in Kenya’s forests and farms. Many young people resorted to crime after the ban stopped the lucrative log transportation trade. In exchange for information, they are allowed to sell seedlings in reforestation areas. www.news24.com
The art of a tree that can bear 40 types of fruit
An art professor has created a tree that can produce 40 diﬀerent fruits, including peaches, apricots, plums, cherries and nectarines. Sam Van Aken, of Syracuse University in the US, used chip grafting to create the trees. edition.cnn.com
Flower fans ﬂock to wine estate to view agapanthus garden Vergelegen Wine Estate in Cape Town (pictured below) is enjoying an inﬂux of visitors eager to see its agapanthus garden, arguably the largest in South Africa. The beds of blue, purplish and white ﬂowers bloom from November to February and more than 15,000 agapanthus were planted within a 1,500m² area three years ago. They now form a striking portion of the estate’s latest award-winning garden, the East Garden, which was established to complement the farm’s investment in a new wine centre and family-style bistro. It also incorporates a playground
and a maze made from vines. Vergelegen’s gardens span 10 hectares, within a cultural heritage area of 60 hectares. Resident horticulturist Richard Arm said: “The agapanthus have been planted in bands according to colour, size and ﬂowering times. This showcases the great variety of indigenous agapanthus we have in South Africa.” Agapanthus Africanus was the ﬁrst agapanthus species collected in South Africa and was described in 1679 as Hyacinthus Africanus tuberosus, ﬂore caeruleo umbellato. The plants were exported from Africa to Europe
as early as the 17th century and grown in conservatories. Locally, the popular plant is often referred to as the blue lily, isicakathi (Xhosa) and ubani (Zulu), while in Europe and America it is known as the African lily. Vergelegen is open seven days a week, from 9.30am to 5pm. One-hour heritage and garden tours depart from the Wine Tasting Centre daily at 10am. www.vergelegen.co.za
Keyhole garden hailed as answer to unlocking nourishment in region’s drought-ridden areas
Keyhole gardening has been hailed as the ultimate in raised-bed design — a sustainable combination of composting and planting. Keyhole gardens are often 3ft high by 6ft in diameter and, when viewed from above, resemble a keyhole. The gardens use 80% less water than a normal backyard patch, tolerate hot climates and are easier to tend because they are at waist level. Keyhole gardening was pioneered in Africa and its primary asset is drought tolerance, said Eddie DeJong, co-founder and head of business development and design for Vita Gardens in
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. His company manufactures keyhole garden kits. Plants in keyhole gardens receive their nourishment from compost and water poured down an open-ended tube in the middle of the bed. DeJong said: “The central composting basket is the key to making this an eﬀective gardening solution. “After the garden has been established, it should be watered primarily through the compost basket and less and
less around the bed itself. This trains the vegetables to grow deep roots down to where the moisture and nutrients are.” He added that if the garden is layered as intended, waste such as grass clippings are converted into rich soil, making the entire bed a composting nutrient factory. Keyhole gardens are cheap and simple to assemble and can be made out of materials such as straw or brick. www.nwaonline.com
Association ASSOCIATION NEWS
● SALI (South African Landscapers Association) ● SANA (South African Nursery Association) ● TGMA (Turf Grass Managers Association) ● CGF (The Cape Green Forum) ● Arbor SA
The South African Green Industries Council (SAGIC) is a vibrant, fast-growing umbrella organisation representing the green industry in South Africa. Its primary objectives are to: ● Represent the South African green industry ● Develop and support best practice ● Facilitate issues of national interest pertaining to the green industry ● Organise and market networking opportunities ● Promote gardening and the greening of South Africa SAGIC represents employees, employers and suppliers of products and services within South Africa’s green industry. SAGIC association members are: ● IPSA (The Interior Plantscaper’s Association) ● LIA (The Landscape Irrigation Association) ● OPPASA (The Outdoor Power Product Association)
Membership of SAGIC comes under ﬁve branches: ● Individual (for anyone who identiﬁes with SAGIC’s aims and objectives) ● Association (open to recognised associations active in the green industry) ● Company (open to any business that can beneﬁt from a positive association with SAGIC) ● Student (for any students active in or associated with the green industry or who are studying horticulture) ● Educational (for educational/ training institutions that are active or interested in the green industry). www.sagic.co.za
SAGIC chairperson Ida-Marie Styrdom
Training SAGIC is an Assessment Quality Partner. Various occupational qualiﬁcations – for instance production nursery supervisor, retail nursery supervisor, and landscape supervisor – have been developed in collaboration with the Agricultural Sector Education and Training Authority (AgriSETA). SAGIC remains committed to expanding its role in all spheres of training and development programmes within South Africa’s green industry. Invasive Species Invasive species are now regarded as a liability to landowners. According to new regulations under the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act, anyone who sells land has to ﬁll out an Invasive Species Declaration Form, which must be given to the buyer of the property and lodged with the Department of Environmental Aﬀairs. SAGIC is playing an active role in the ﬁght against invasive species. SAGIC has presented accreditation training courses throughout South Africa in collaboration with the Department of Environmental Aﬀairs. Once attendees have been certiﬁcated, they can act as invasive species consultants.
Water Water scarcity is one of the most alarming national and regional issues. SAGIC continues to work with various local government institutions and green industry role-players to address this crisis.
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
NEWS NEWS EXTRA
embers of the Cape Green Forum recently enjoyed a three-day tour of the Bedford Garden Festival in the Eastern Cape. Sixteen travellers ﬂew to Port Elizabeth, where they picked up two minibuses and drove to Bedford via one of the gardens, the mountainous Baviaanskrans. The historical Midgley’s Hotel in Adelaide was the team’s base for the three days. Each garden in the festival was unique, with its own sense of style. Some of the homesteads date to the early 1800s, the gardens reﬂecting their history with symmetrical beds dripping with roses. Others had a country garden feel, with mass plantings of colour.
THE TEAM WAS AMAZED TO SEE WHAT HAD BEEN CREATED OUT OF THE VIRGIN VELD Tucked away in a secluded mountain ravine, remote Skelmkloof featured mainly succulents, cacti and intriguingly rusty odds and ends. The owner had cleverly managed to introduce her quirky sense of humour into the mix. Another restored 1869 farmstead, Donkerhoek, featured only vegetable patches overﬂowing with spinach, celery, beets, garlic, carrots and herbs. Donkerhoek’s gardener is passionate about growing organic, healthy veggies, which she gives to staﬀ and friends. The leftovers are juiced, frozen, pickled and stored. Barbara believes that by collecting and using her own heirloom seeds, plants are better adapted to their situation and climate. Maasstroom, a garden close to Bedford 10
OUT AND ABOUT
THE CAPE GREEN FORUM
BEDFORD GARDEN FESTIVAL TOUR town, showcased a wonderful mix of formal gardens and wandering shady paths, with unique benches tucked away, inviting people to sit in the shade while enjoying the scent of the abundant ﬂowers and interesting vistas. On Saturday, the group visited a town garden that had been created in three years. After being shown the ‘before’ pictures, the team was amazed to see what had been created out of the virgin veld. There were beds around the perimeter, with a classical statue featured in a rose bed and awesome views of the mountain range in the distance. The travelling group contained a wide mix of people – retailers, growers, organic suppliers, chemical suppliers, a label supplier and a freelance writer. There was much fun, laughter and some serious discussions. All in all, a wonderful trip. The Bedford Garden Festival is well worth a visit. By the end of the tour, the group had visited 13 gardens and travelled almost 800km!
Time to take a break from the hectic schedule
Roses are a speciality at many homesteads
ABOUT CAPE GREEN FORUM TOURS The Cape Green Forum arranges one tour per year, which always includes something horticultural but also a range of other activities. The tours are a great way for people to network and spend more time getting to know their colleagues and fellow travellers. For more information, visit www.capegreenforum.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
The group visited 13 gardens and travelled almost 800km
OUT AND ABOUT
CAPE TOWN FLOWER SHOW PREVIEW
new event will be launched for the ﬁrst time on South Africa’s horticultural calendar next year – the Cape Town Flower Show, set to take place at The Castle of Good Hope from 27 to 30 October 2016. The Castle is being refurbished to commemorate its 350th anniversary, with the renovation to be unveiled at the show. On 26 November, Pro Landscaper Africa attended a preview for the show, where invited guests enjoyed talks and demonstrations as a taster for the forthcoming event. The Cape Town Flower Show is not only aimed at highlighting gardens, gardening and trends for outdoor living but will also give a nod to sustainability and South Africa’s heritage. From new ideas on vertical gardening to urban farming, water-wise initiatives to gardening accessories, the show is targeting a wide variety of international and local guests. The show will act as a forum for discussion and many diverse groups will be involved in the show, making it an ideal stage for creating debate across a wide range of topics. It is hoped the Cape Town Flower Show will become the most important show of its kind in Africa and a living legacy through which Cape Town can showcase its unique ﬂoral kingdom and horticultural expertise. www.capetownﬂowershow.co.za
Highlighting the unique flora of the Cape Kingdom
The preview was a taster for next year’s show
The Cape Town Flower Show will take place from 27 to 30 October 2016
The Castle of Good Hope will be the venue
Visitors enjoyed talks and demonstrations
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 11
SUSTAINABLE URBAN DESIGN FOR A
WATER-SCARCE FUTURE Megan Taylor, a senior lecturer in Unisa’s environmental science department, says the green industry must pull together to tackle the looming spectre of water deficit It is well-known that water is a scarce resource in South Africa. This has been brought to the forefront of everyone’s minds by the current drought, the worst the nation has experienced since 1992. Demand for water will continue to grow, driven by population growth and the development that accompanies it. Given that more than 98% of South Africa’s available water resources are already allocated, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research has said the country could face a water deficit of between 2% and 13% by 2025. This does not mean we have 10 years to carry on ‘business as usual’, because there are already parts of the country that do not have enough water to meet the needs of people, farmers, industry and the environment. In Gauteng, for example, government cautioned a few years ago that demand could soon outstrip supply. Gauteng’s supply is supplemented by water from Lesotho (Lesotho Highlands Water Project) and KwaZulu-Natal (Thukela-Vaal Water Transfer Scheme). Considering that KwaZulu-Natal is one of the provinces hit hardest by the drought, it is time Gauteng became aware of what it costs others to keep this industry hub supplied with water.
Calling all the heroes I believe this is the time for landscape architects and designers to share their success stories of sustainable urban designs and retrofits that have dramatically reduced water use in buildings and urban landscapes. There should be more emphasis on design awards, with greater publicity for green design and ideas, because we need to see our country’s heroes rising to the challenge and making a 12
difference. We need to see their ideas in action to spark hope that something can be done. These ideas need to be widely publicised as customers need to realise what is possible in terms of sustainable design. And let’s not underestimate the power of trends – it is currently ‘in’ to be ‘green’. Unfortunately, some only go as far as ‘green-washing’ – but the landscape architecture industry can answer back by creating its own norms and standards and supporting these so customers get the real deal with truly ‘green’ buildings and spaces. The Turf Grass Managers Association (TGMA) is currently arranging certification for its member golf courses by the Golf Environment Organisation, which entails a responsible approach to water management, among other sustainability and environmental issues.
A spark creates a fire Ideas spark more ideas, which is why such exciting things are possible when teams of experts collaborate. When communities get involved and take ownership of projects that make their lives better, they become part of the solution and ensure the project succeeds. As Richard Metcalfe, of the TGMA, said: “Now is the time for the green industry to pull together.” An ideal would be for diverse industry associations to meet to share ideas and knowledge. Water scarcity is a shared problem, and we can only benefit by pooling
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
ideas from different sectors to find solutions. Perhaps golf courses and racecourses could learn from each other about turf management? What expertise could landscape architects, irrigation consultants and turfgrass managers share? The possibilities are endless. When pitching design ideas, linking the environmental benefits of rainwater harvesting or grey water re-use systems to real cost savings is vital. It should be easier and more desirable to ‘go green’. It helps a great deal if it’s cheaper too. This is where the landscape architect’s creative flair is vital – how to design functional water-saving systems that also look great on a building or in a landscape. The most critical factor is the element of human behaviour. It is notoriously difficult to change attitudes and behaviours, but it can be done if the will is there. If you have the will to make a difference, you can find a way. What can you do now, with what you have, where you are?
Resources I was part of Rand Water’s Water Wise team for six years and, since joining Unisa in 2011, have continued to be part of the research collaboration between Unisa and Rand Water. There are excellent free resources at www.waterwise. co.za or www.randwater.co.za (click on the Water Wise logo). In another collaboration with Unisa, Rand Water’s Leslie Hoy produced a drought response plan for the green industry in Gauteng as his Master’s thesis. ABOUT MEGAN TAYLOR Megan Taylor is a senior lecturer on ornamental horticulture in Unisa’s Environmental Science department, where she has worked for almost ﬁve years. Before joining Unisa, Megan spent six years with Rand Water’s Water Wise team, providing research, marketing and environmental education. Before this, Megan worked as a market research analyst, rising to senior analyst at BMI-TechKnowledge. Given this journey, one of Megan’s research interests is water conservation in the green industry. www.unisa.ac.za
DON’T BECOME A MEMBER OF THE ‘BAKKIE CLUB' It is always difficult to give advice on what makes a successful business, but I have decided to discuss the three aspects I think are crucially important to consider. The first aspect is to make sure you have the training and education. You may think you know everything, but clients can smell the “bakkie club” a mile away. People often think landscaping (which is a term I personally hate) is something anyone can do with very little knowledge. That is not even close to the truth. Landscape design, however, is even more complex and requires in-depth training, skills and knowledge. It is not something to be taken lightly as people are going to be living their lives in your creation, and it affects the environment in many ways not often thought of by the untrained person. A short course also simply won’t wash, no matter how much experience you have. The Irene School of Garden Design offers a year-long, full-time course, and a 16-month part-time course. Even with small groups, it is still a challenge to ensure all the aspects are covered in their entirety. A quick fix simply will not be enough, especially on the graphic and www.prolandscaper.co.za
environmental demands surrounding modern rules and guidelines. The second aspect is accuracy. I am amazed at how many landscapers can’t quote properly or even just thumb-suck prices using an idea for a garden they harbour in their head. I am even more surprised at the number of clients who are willing to take a risk by using a landscaper who does not even provide a proper plan and Bill of Quantities (BOQ). Drafting a plan, getting correct areas and doing a proper BOQ is essential if someone is to run a successful business where the landscape installer does not under or overquote for a project, and stays within the correct profit margins. In most cases it comes back to the correct training, and landscapers simply do not understand the standards set by the industry. This is not only bad for business but can, in severe cases, lead to legal issues. My third aspect is reputation. The landscape industry works largely on recommendations and if a landscape designer or installer has a bad name in the industry, it unfortunately sticks. Most clients should ask
for a reference of study, a portfolio of design work or, in the case of the installer, installed projects. They should also confirm this by double-checking the references and institutions they have been given. Don’t take on more than you can handle and take pride in your work. It is very important to you and your client that you are open and honest. I would also avoid buying someone else’s business unless you are 100% sure their clients were satisfied with their work. Clients can be your best friend – or your worst nightmare. ABOUT LEE BURGER Lee Burger is principal and senior lecturer at the Irene School of Garden Design. He is an assessor for leading educational institutions and universities in South Africa and is a prominent consultant on a variety of projects, especially in design and architecture. Lee has written numerous books and articles and his company, ISGD, is responsible for an array of projects. He is a founding member of the Independent Gardener’s Forum for South Africa. www.gardendesignschool.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 13
THE BUSINESS OF MOBILE MARKETING Mike Laws, Group CMO of InTarget, says the ‘Please Call Me’ service can help you exploit the awesome mobile marketing opportunities that exist out there Conventional wisdom has it that Africa is a continent of feature phone users. A feature phone is a mobile phone on which you can surf the internet and store and play music, but it lacks the advanced functionality and support for third-party software of smartphones. TechCentral has reported that by 2019, only 27% of cellphones sold in Africa will be feature phones. The vast majority will be smartphones, with 155 million being shipped next year alone. According to research by International Data Corporation, feature phone sales are declining by 20% every year. Statistics like these are relevant to mobile marketing because industry commentators often use them to signal the death knell of ̒ basic’ mobile marketing campaign tools such as SMS and USSD (standard GSM technology supported by all GSM handsets that is session-based and supports longer message content than texts). This is wrong, however. Just because USSD and SMS are the mobile marketing tools those with feature phones use most, doesn’t mean smartphone users don’t also use text messaging and menu-driven USSD. SMS and USSD have, in fact, become growing mobile marketing bearers in their own right. Just because a smartphone user has downloaded an over-the-top (OTT) messaging app (where third parties provide instant messaging services as an alternative to text messaging services provided by a mobile network operator) such as WhatsApp, it doesn’t mean they don’t regularly send and receive SMSs to and from people and organisations they don’t wish to add to their OTT app. 14
Here are a few tips you should bear in mind Thanks to the growing popularity of the most successful USSD application ever – Please Call Me – this technology will continue to prove one of the most effective and measurable ways for brands to reach mobile users, in 2019 and beyond. InTarget continues to partner with some of South Africa and the continent’s leading brands when it comes to exploiting the awesome mobile marketing opportunities offered by the Please Call Me service. InTarget’s established relationships means it is able to commercialise this service, which is highly valued by literally tens of millions of prepaid cellular users. This is achieved by adding text tags to the end of ̒Please Call Me messages for a specified time. Just as in SMS-based mobile advertising, there is a certain art in composing or structuring text tags that get your message across in the most effective way.
Don’t devalue the services you offer by reducing words to ‘SMS speak’ in an effort to save yourself space. Using SMS abbreviations such as “thnx” instead of “thank you” might be fine in a casual text conversation with your friends, but consumers expect the companies they interact with to uphold certain standards.
Because space is limited, don’t mix messages and ensure there is one clearly understandable call to action that is also just a click away. Know your audience by understanding that the products and services most suited to Please Call Me text tags are usually low-value recurring items that are also subscription or debit-order based.
Read back through your message before you send it, predictive text can make some strange and potentially embarrassing changes to the message you are trying to get across!
ABOUT MIKE LAWS Mike Laws is group chief marketing oﬃcer for InTarget, one of Africa's largest mobile aggregation and solutions companies. He has more than 23 years’ experience in the ICT industry and has worked in multiple MNOs in Africa such as Econet Wireless and Vodacom South Africa. He is currently commercialising mobile advertising across 33 countries in Africa and the Middle East for Airtel Group and MTN Group. He has an MBA from Oxford Brookes University and is an expert on the role of mobile as part of large-scale marketing. www.intarget.mobi
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
WHAT DO YOUR CUSTOMERS WANT? In the 2000 movie What Women Want, the male protagonist, played by Mel Gibson, gains the ability to hear what the women around him really think. At first he is surprised to find out the ‘macho’ image he’d been portraying for years was turning women off. Later in the story, however, he works out that if he listens to what women actually want, he can anticipate their needs. By the end of the movie he loses the ability but learns the lesson that to ‘get the girl’ he needs to understand and anticipate what women want, not what he assumes they want. We could learn a lot from that movie’s premise. Do you know what your customers want? Can you anticipate their needs? Are you able to deliver what they want and need, even before they realise it? It’s likely that your customer has requested your products or services because they consider
You can send out information via email or post to remind customers of your expertise
you to be an expert in your field. At the very least, they assume you know what you are doing and how the process works. This means they often need guidance and advice regarding the services and solutions you offer. It’s a common problem that customers feel disappointed or even frustrated when they don’t understand how the process works, or when they run into problems that could have been easily avoided. For example, if you want to buy a printer for your office, you will also need to buy the USB cable as these are not included in the box (for environmental reasons). You would assume a salesperson would know this and immediately recommend you buy the cable you need. But I’ve heard on several occasions that a friend or colleague has arrived at the office with the printer, only to find out they can’t use it because the ‘cable was not included’. Besides the frustration, it also creates the impression that the supplier didn’t care about the customer to make the recommendation (either the salesperson or cashier). So ask yourself frequently ‘what would your customer want?’ and take some time to think about their experiences and how you can create a good impression by making their lives easier. Every time you anticipate a problem your customer might experience, and offer a solution to that problem before they even ask, you create an opportunity to surprise and please that customer. You show you really care about their wants and needs. And, ultimately, the customers you need to create a sustainable and profitable business are those who employ your services because you show you care, not because you’re the cheapest.
Here are some ideas to consider that could make customers' lives easier: ● Does a landscaping service you provide require seasonal sprucing, such as cutting and pruning lawns and borders? If so, why not offer a discount on your next visit? This is a great way to see your customer again. Or how about sending a reminder SMS or email when that work might be due? Find a way to schedule the reminder automatically when the original work is undertaken or completed. ● Is there seasonal information your customer should know about? Once again, you can send out valuable educational information that reminds the customer of your expertise. ● Do you find your new customers ask the same questions? It might be valuable to create a ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ (FAQ) document to make it easier to answer any questions they may have, or provide information about problems they hadn’t even considered (see example, left). Don’t wait to be asked to provide this document – make it a part of your interaction process with the customer.
ABOUT MARCEL OUDEJANS Marcel Oudejans is a conference speaker and entertainer. In 2007 he published his ﬁrst book, The Serious Business Owner’s Guide To Creating Customers For Life, and has become a highly requested keynote speaker for industry conferences, combining magic and comedy to deliver his message. Marcel has been registered with the Professional Speakers Association of Southern Africa since 2008. www.corporatemagician.co.za/keynote
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 15
indoor & outdoor ďŹ re features www bbq-warehouse com www.bbq-warehouse.com
+971 43 791 390
Let’s Hear it From
TANYA DE VILLIERS AND HERMAN DE LANGE Pro Landscaper Africa speaks to CNdV directors Tanya de Villiers and Herman de Lange on their new business venture and the beginning of CNdV’s new era as it launches its cndv landscape architects division
What did you study to prepare yourselves for this industry? Tanya: I studied landscape architecture at Pretoria university and also completed a course in graphic design. I come from a family mainly of engineers, my uncle was a famous inventor in the UK. I was trying to decide between architecture and interior design when I happened to find out about landscape architecture – and it looked much more interesting. Herman: Landscape architecture at the University of Pretoria. I come from a family of designers and architects and I did not want to study architecture so I decided to branch out into landscape architecture. You have both been guest lecturers. How has the idea of landscape architecture changed from when you studied? Herman: Landscape architecture has definitely become far more mainstream and well-known. www.prolandscaper.co.za
When I studied, a lot of architects did not even know what landscape architecture was. That is starting to change quite a lot. I think that is a result of the courses at the universities, where architects, landscape architects and construction students sit in a lot of the same lectures for the first few years before they split them up into their desired fields. Now people are beginning to realise what landscape architecture is. Tanya: I would agree with that. Where did you work prior to CNdV and what led you here? Tanya: I worked for landscape architects OvP Associates for eight years before starting my own company, Cape Natural Design. I found I had too many projects and they were far too large, so I joined with the Chittenden Nicks partnership to start the landscape architecture division, we formed Chittenden Nicks de Villiers (CNdV). That was 16 years ago.
Herman: I have been at CNdV for four years. Before that I worked for a company called Viridian Consulting and, prior to that, I lived in Durban for 10 years and worked at Uys and White Landscape Architects. Tanya: In our new firm, cndv landscape architects, Herman and I will both be directors. We are very excited about our new office and our new focus. Now you have decided to branch out into cndv landscape architects, what will the new division’s expertise be? Tanya: We are mainly involved in design work so do not specialise in environmental work. We are also going to focus more on industrial design, concept development, furniture design, etc. Cape Natural Design used to design furniture so we will include industrial design and furniture in this, mainly for external use. Herman: I used to design and have built interior furniture, so it is a good fit for me too.
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 17
INTERVIEW Do you contract out on larger-scale projects, and if so how do you choose the contractors? Tanya: We have a list of preferred contractors and it depends on the project. Sometimes you need signage people or specialist furniture manufacturers so we have a list of people we know and trust. Usually we propose a contractor we have worked with in the past to the client, who tends to have one or two people they want to add to the list. If it is a specialised project, we might ask for a price from two selected people to ensure the quality is high. Herman was ILASA president for two years and Tanya chairman of ILASA Western Cape and on the board of SACLAP. Would you say being part of an association is the right career move for a landscape architect? Herman: These are voluntary positions. It takes up a lot of your time and is not about the exposure, it is about service to the community. There is no benefit other than to the profession. Promoting landscape architecture is the ideal. Tanya: Being part of an association is something landscape architects should do. You see opportunities. For instance, if you are a young professional, meeting directors of different companies is important because, whether you like it or not, people will associate with people they know. For example, when they
are looking to fill a position, they will consider a person they have met before considering another. CVs coming through on email don’t really cut it. Face to face is always better. Herman: It has not necessarily helped my career but it is a good way to keep in touch with other landscape architects in the profession because, without the associations, we wouldn’t really see each other. It’s a good way to network, keep in touch and keep your finger on the pulse of what is happening around you. How many employees will you have in your new venture? Tanya: Initially, it will be Herman and myself as directors plus six or seven other staff. We will grow from there. Do you ever disagree with each other from a design point of view? Herman: Tanya and I have a similar design style so there is no head-butting. Tanya: We have a similar design philosophy. I don’t look over Herman’s shoulders and think, ‘I don’t like that’. How would you describe your design aesthetic as a team? Tanya: It is different for every project and depends on the location, style, client, theme and
budget. One thing that is undeniable – budget makes a difference. In addition, the region, site conditions, and scale of the project impact on the design. For instance, on the Sitari project (see box below), we could design huge avenues but on others you can’t really do that. As far as our design style goes, I think Herman would agree we try to stick to a more reserved aesthetic. We try not to over-design and we try not to be trend-driven. We try to adopt a timeless rather than a fashionable philosophy. Our design would need to have meaning or reason. How long do you think Sitari will take to complete and how much time would you say you spend on it? Tanya: It should be complete around 2018. It is one of our biggest projects and has the second-largest budget I have ever worked with. Landscape Phase 1 & 2 have a R70 million budget. It is a long-term project which takes up quite a lot of our time. I would say we spend at least one day a week on it. We have been working on it for about three years already. During the design phase, we spent about three days a week on the project. What makes the Sitari project unique? Tanya: The built elements we have designed and the architectural and focal elements. The cost
One of the largest projects currently being undertaken by CNdV is the Sitari Country Estate in Somerset West. The estate will consist of 3,150 residential apartments, a creche, school, shopping mall and gymnasium, as well as a clubhouse with a pool, tennis courts and plenty of boardwalks and paths. Paarl-based nursery Just Trees supplied more than 15,000 trees for the project. Image supplied by Xpose Studios
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
CNdV’s award-winning lights create a pathway into the main square at Dube City, next to King Shaka International Airport. More CNdV street furniture from the Dube City project (right). Image courtesy of Sean Laurentz
isn’t only in the planting, trees, irrigation, it is a whole lot of different items such as water features, silos, windmills. We wanted to create something that could compete in the market. You need to be unique so that’s why the client is happy to spend a bit more to elevate the project, separating it from competitors. The idea is that, when you see a feature of the project, it becomes well-known, a landmark. It’s often a good idea to spend some money up front to boost sales on more prominent projects. Are budgets quite strict or do they fluctuate? Herman: Once the budget has been accepted you can’t really do anything to increase it unless the client initiates a major design change. Tanya: Clients tend to have a bit of contingency More award-winning CNdV projects ● LIASA award for Sitari Country Estate, 2015 ● SAICE award and ILASA Award of Excellence for Dube Square, 2013 ● SALI Gold Award for Stonehurst Mountain Estate, 2008 ● ILASA Award of Merit and Mail & Guardian Greening the Future Award for Lake Michelle, 2007 ● SAPOA award for Lake Michelle, 2007 ● SALI award for Vangate Mall, 2006 ● SALI Gold Award for Le Verger Restaurant, 2006 ● ILASA Award of Merit for Fairview Wine and Cheese Estate, 2001
in their budget but try not to use it until it becomes vital. Only unforeseen circumstances should allow you to go over budget. Have you any favourite projects? Tanya: Lake Michelle and Dube City in Durban. I hope Sitari will become one of our favourites too. What credentials would someone require to apply for a position at your company? Tanya: We do take apprentices and have two at the moment and one student. They have to be keen to learn, hard-working and selfmotivated. We have employed a vast range of people. We employed an ex-Anglican priest once and he was fantastic. At the age of 50, he became one of our star employees. We focus on the actual person and their attitude. Herman: They need to be self-motivated, have a bit of a spark and be willing to start at the bottom, learn, and work their way to the top. What is the biggest challenge your industry faces at the moment? Tanya: There are some people discounting something like 80% off the SACLAP fees – this happens on government and municipal project tenders specifically. I think it is causing a lot of damage to the profession as, once someone discounts their fees, we all have to do so in order to compete. It is impossible to produce the quality of work required for that price.
Herman: We find some clients now expect major discounts from the get-go, which is why we do not take on a lot of government work. We cannot afford to work on a project and do a really good job operating on a 60% discount – no one can. Why are you creating the new division? Tanya: We are expanding the company and want to focus more on industrial design and the product development side. It is a positive message of expansion and we have opened new offices in Pepper Street, Cape Town. We will still be working closely with our planning and urban design division. What do you do when you are not at work? Tanya: I dance for a small ballet company called Dance Crew and have an 18-month-old daughter – so that keeps me busy. Herman: I climb mountains. Luckily there are lots of them in and around Cape Town. I enjoy hiking, mountain climbing, mostly outdoor activities. ABOUT CNDV LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS cndv landscape architects 5th Floor 6 Pepper Street Cape Town Tel: +27 21810 7799 Email: email@example.com www.cndv.biz
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 19
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LUXURY LIVING GREENinc had to envisage landscaping from two different angles during The Houghton apartment block development in Johannesburg â€“ one on the street-side and another with uninterrupted views of the adjacent golf course
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 21
hen Johannesburg-based GREENinc Landscape Architecture took on The Houghton luxury apartment block project for client Asvid Holdings, the company had to take a view from two very different angles. On one side of the development, apartments overlook Johannesburg’s Houghton Golf Course, with the building’s two wings lying next to the 7th and 12th holes. As well as a great view of the golf course, apartments on that side of the block have private gardens with uninterrupted views, heated swimming pools with awnings to protect residents’ privacy, and outdoor areas suitable for all kinds of al fresco entertainment. On the street side, however, space was utilised for more practical reasons, providing visitor parking and access to secure basements for vehicles, while pedestrians enter groundfloor units and lifts via garden-like spaces. Each seven-storey stack of apartments has its own lift, eliminating the need for common corridors at the ‘rear’ of the building. However, from both sides of every unit residents can enjoy views across the golf course and towards Houghton Ridge. Large plane trees already lined the pavements in front of The Houghton, while on the street-side, with its extended sidewalk and cobbled avenue, a lot of space is dedicated to access for vehicles. However, priority was given to pedestrians by removing all kerbs so the cobbled avenue flows throughout all areas. GREENinc introduced planting to soften the expanse of paving. However, these had to be lifted in raised planters and loose pots as the entire area sits on basement slab. These planters and pots helped to give scale to the flat landscape lying in front of the high
elevations of the building, while also offering seating for residents on a hot day. At H12, which is the wing adjacent to the 12th hole, the hardiest of plant varieties were chosen as the area becomes very hot in the summer yet sits in the shadow of the building throughout winter. Despite this, the chosen palette for the shared spaces is full of colour and lush greens. GREENinc complemented the landscaping with custom furniture, including benches and lighting bollards. Perimeter security also fell under the company’s scope, and a security fence was erected around the entire development. Clearvu fencing was chosen to least obstruct views, alternated with stone walls and planted light-boxes. On the golf course side, ground-floor units open on to private gardens and enjoy amazing views across the golf course. Originally, the space was conceived as a long promenade that would connect all the units to the golf course and a hotel at the development’s centre, with private ‘balconies’ on a raised level separating private from semi-private space. However, a limited budget meant the first phase merely comprised of large areas of planted embankments and lawns. Hardscape elements such as swimming pools and decks were also placed in the architect’s scope, making co-ordination difficult. The second and third phases of the project involved work on the apartment gardens. The H12 gardens were designed as large balconies, which terrace down to the golf course. Planting and pools were then elegantly added to the garden areas, with services such as pool pumps tucked under the upper terrace. As the step between the lower and upper terraces was less than 800mm, balustrades
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
PROJECT DETAILS The Houghton Golf Estate APPROXIMATE INVESTMENT LEVEL R5 million PROJECT VALUE R18 million TIMELINE 2007 to 2015
were not required but still hid the security fence from view. The lower terrace is within the common area and allows movement between units as well as providing access for maintenance staff. Stairs to each unit feature custom-designed gates, helping to prevent children from wandering into adjacent units with the accompanying danger of them falling into neighbouring swimming pools. Although the client’s brief was to maximise views of the golf course, this factor had to be balanced by the need to ensure each garden enjoys a good degree of privacy from neighbouring units. Alternate timber screens and hedges help to provide privacy between units at ground level. To allow residents privacy from units on higher floors, timber pergolas with retractable awnings were added above swimming pools. Scattered trees also help to block views from above. www.prolandscaper.co.za
PORTFOLIO REFERENCES Landscape architect GREENinc Tel: +27 11 327 3687 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.greeninc.co.za Architects Boogertman + Partners (Johannesburg) Tel: +27 82 560 0369 Email: email@example.com www.boogertman.com Main contractor Gothic Construction Tel: +27 60 977 4589 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.gothic.co.za Joinery TrueStyle Hard Landscaping Solutions Tel: +27 84 694 2315 Email: email@example.com www.truestyleland.co.za Landscape contractor Earthforce Landscapes Tel: +27 11 021 3757 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
SUPPLIERS Pools Pool Pro Tel: +27 82 444 7016 Email: email@example.com www.poolpro.co.za
At the H7 wing by the 7th hole, the terrace style was replaced by large retaining walls for units next to the irrigation dam. Softer raised banks were also used in places with minimal level differences to the golf course. In Phase 3, swimming pools were alternated with sunken entertainment spaces known as firepits. Materials used for the hardscaping elements of the gardens consisted of cut stone and gravel, with timber and steel used for all vertical elements, while powder-coated aluminium was used on all planting area edges. Plants used were a mix of grassland palettes and cape bulbs. To separate the bottom of the gardens in the H7 block and the golf course, a small stream was constructed with dense wetland planting introduced to animate the space and help to purify and aerate the irrigation dam water. More spatial definition was required at some of the larger units, so raised steel planters, www.prolandscaper.co.za
water features and large timber pergolas were designed. GREENinc was responsible for all external areas in The Houghton project, including service co-ordination, surface slab drainage and reticulation, paved surfaces, timber decks, pools and gardens. ABOUT GREEN INC GREENinc was founded in 1995 by partners Anton Comrie and Stuart Glen and has scooped a number of landscape architecture awards. Based in Johannesburg, the company has become renowned internationally for its contemporary design project. GREENinc can count many of South Africa’s leading companies among its clients and some of its notable projects include Nelson Mandela Children’s Hospital in Parktown, Jabulani Hospital in Soweto, and Phase 2 of The Freedom Park in Pretoria. www.greeninc.co.za
Paving WilsonStone Tel: +27 11 616 7129 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.wilsonstone.co.za Mazista Tel: +27 11 998 2600 www.mazista.co.za Bosun Tel: 012 250 1711 Email: email@example.com www.bosun.co.za Lighting Regent Lighting Tel: +27 82 927 5525 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.regentlight.co.za Fencing Cochrane Steel Tel: +27 11 593 0400 www.cochranesteel.com Planters Classic Stone Tel: +27 21 701 7655 www.classicstone.co.za Custom-built pergolas to GREENinc design True Style Tel: +27 11 768 1305 www.truestyleland.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 23
WALK THIS WAY As part of ongoing upgrades at the University of Pretoria, Outline Landscape Architects created a stunning promenade that gives students a sense of arrival at their new, state-of-the-art dining hall
his project entailed the development of a new dining hall at the University of Pretoria on the Hillcrest campus. Previously, each residence on the campus had its own communal dining hall and canteen or kitchen. It was decided to consolidate the facilities into a larger, state-ofthe-art dining hall offering a variety of meals, from fast-food to traditional home-cooked fare. Outline Landscape Architects was appointed at the initiation phase and was involved through to the site supervision and completion of the project. The landscape project went out to tender, with Greenacres Landscapes as the successful bidder. The brief to Outline
Landscape Architects was to create a walkway for cyclists and pedestrians, connecting existing residences to the dining hall. Seating areas and waiting nodes had to be incorporated as well as trees for shade along the 350m long, 8m wide promenade. A piazza area was required for students to gather that could also be used as a spill-out area when the dining hall was required for functions. The TuksMonate Dining Hall project placed an emphasis on the importance of green open spaces in a campus environment. The University of Pretoria is looking to upgrade a number of its facilities, placing utmost importance on safe outdoor areas for students to enjoy.
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
A major attribute of the promenade is that it is a comfortable walkway that guides students to the dining hall, which is an integral part of studentsâ€™ everyday life. The walkway is lined with shady trees and a wide variety of plants. Seating areas, litter bins and cigarette bins have also been provided and LED strip lights create a sense of security. Outline Landscape Architectsâ€™ design philosophy focused on creating interest, surprise, and a sense of arrival. A total of 190 indigenous trees were planted and a bio-swale allows water retention and also provides specific microclimates. The 1,800m2 piazza provides a formal outdoor space for gatherings and www.prolandscaper.co.za
PROJECT DETAILS TuksMonate Dining Hall PROJECT VALUE Total: R32.2 million LANDSCAPE BUDGET R2.7 million TIMELINE The project was initiated in February 2012 and construction commenced in January 2013. The project was completed in December 2013 and was operational in January 2014
functions, which will be an asset to the Hillcrest campus as students previously had to rent venues for functions. Now they have access to an on-site function hall with full catering. The promenade was designed with a gentle meander and allows easy and safe movement for pedestrians and cyclists. Two lanes were created, one lane 2.5m wide, to be used by cyclists, and one 4m wide for pedestrians. The two lanes are divided by planters, with every second planter raised to create seating walls. A litter bin and cigarette bin were placed beside each planter. Circular nodes, consisting of raised planters and edge seating, were created as waiting areas and as connection points for www.prolandscaper.co.za
future walkways according to the campus master plan. The site was effectively flat, posing a landscaping challenge. Mounds were created using excavated soil from building work and placed along the southern side of the promenade and, together with the planting, enclose views towards the building. The views only open up as you approach the building, creating a sense of arrival. Because of the considerable length of the promenade, a lot of water run-off could occur so a bio-swale was created along the northern edge of the promenade, with suitable planting in bands. The paving consists of two colours used in
alternating bands and, together with the planters along the middle of the promenade, create a strong rhythm and pattern. This opens on to the piazza, where a large concrete paver was used. The piazza is a transition area between the promenade and dining hall. The building works on a grid and the planters and paving follow this pattern. The piazza was required to be a relatively open space as the dining hall accommodates about 1,800 students. Bicycle stands were designed by Neal Dunstan, resident landscape architect of the University of Pretoria, and are incorporated off the cycle lane. This was an important consideration as there has been a huge drive on campus to
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 25
PORTFOLIO ABOUT THE FRIENDLY PLANT REFERENCES Project Team Landscape Architect Kathrin Hammel-Louw Outline Landscape Architects Tel: 083 271 9631 Email: email@example.com Landscape Contractor
Malanseuns Pleasure Plants Tel: 012 549 2128/9 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.malanseuns.co.za
Central Nursery Depot Tel: 087 940 9617 www.cndnursery.co.za
Jacques van der Merwe Greenacres Landscapes Tel: 082 904 7960
Green Acres Nursery & Landscaping Tel: 014 365 2817
Magenta Plant Distributors Tel: 012 807 0768
Main Contractor Arrie Venter Van der Linde & Venter Tel: 083 250 7153 Email: email@example.com www.vdlv.co.za
encourage students to ride bicycles. Lighting and security was an important consideration and LED strips were fitted under the circular and raised planters along the promenade, providing not only a strong sense of safety but also a pleasing aesthetic effect. Dunstan and Jason Sampson, curator of the Manie van der Schijff Botanical Gardens, were consulted for input on plant species. Numerous unusual trees were donated from the university’s nursery and 190 new trees were planted in total. All planting was indigenous and mostly endemic. As a specific design element, flowering plants were selected in predominantly red/orange and blue/purple shades to reflect the university’s official colours of red and blue. Year-round interest has been created as the selected plants flower at different times of the year, while trees show prominent seasonal changes. The planting was also grouped in shaped bands that follow the flow of the promenade and the form of the mounds. An informal amphitheatre was created for resident meetings or get-togethers using excavated soil and is slightly stepped and lawned, with large trees planted to provide shade. The southern side of the piazza is also encircled by a retaining wall, which is planted with shrubs to provide privacy for adjacent residences. The client and, perhaps more importantly, the students who use the new facility have expressed their delight at the project’s outcome.
MAJOR SUPPLIERS Paving Corobrik (burgundy paving and masonry bricks) Tel: 021 888 2300 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.corobrik.com Bosun (piazza paving) Tel: 012 250 1711 Email: email@example.com www.bosun.co.za Infraset (Cottage Stone) Tel: 011 876 5500 www.infraset.com Street Furniture
WilsonStone (Modus 900 litter bin and 1800 Turin bench) Tel: 011 616 7129 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.wilsonstone.co.za Lighting
Lighting & Allied Manufacturers Tel: 012 998 9984 Email: oloﬄam@mweb.co.za Plants and trees
Tshala Plant Brokers
Tel: 082 716 5891
Bristle Cone Nursery Tel: 012 207 9904 Email: email@example.com www.bristlecone.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.magpd.co.za Trees only
Tip Top Groothandel Kwekery Tel: 012 527 0566 Random Harvest Tel: 082 553 0598 Email: email@example.com www.randomharvest.co.za
Plantwise Tel: 011 953 4540 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.plantwise.co.za Herbs
Doonholm Nursery Tel: 0861 244 837 www.doonholm.com
ABOUT OUTLINE LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS Outline Landscape Architects was founded in 2009 and Kathrin Hammel-Louw is principal landscape architect. Outline Landscape Architects oﬀers a professional landscape architectural service across South Africa. It prides itself on an innovative design approach, utilising the latest technologies and studying current trends to create attractive, functional and healthy outdoor spaces. The company strives to design the landscape in an integrated approach to the building and to function as a natural, independent entity with a soft imprint on any given site, while utilising resources eﬀectively, eﬃciently and sustainably. outlinela.co.za
PROJECT DETAILS Mauritius resort town PROJECT VALUE USD160 million PROJECT SIZE 22 hectares PROJECT TIME 2011 to May 2014
OUT OF THE BLUE Planning Partners International was a major player in transforming a rugged slice of coast on the island of Mauritius into an elegant, luxurious resort town
lanning Partners International was appointed by client BlueLife, a subsidiary of Mauritian multinational company GML, to undertake full landscape architectural services on a massive project – creating a new resort on the north-east coast of Mauritius. The brief was to create a ‘resort town’ on the shores of the Indian Ocean that would be attractive to native Mauritians and international visitors alike. As well as residential properties, the town had to have a traditional marketplace as well as hospitality, leisure and commercial units positioned to encourage the resort town’s growth and encompass the needs of residents and tourists alike. The aim was to make Azuri, as the resort was named, not only a vacational development but a vibrant and evolving community of year-round residents and seasonal guests. Azuri, set on a beautiful 22 hectare site with beach, river and stunning lagoon, was hailed as a new step in tailored mixed development. Conventional development models in Mauritius had led to a sprawling mess of hotels and gated communities. To combat this, the government of Mauritius collaborated with the country’s Board of Investment to introduce an Integrated Resort Schemes (IRS) initiative. IRS developments typically consist of hotels, Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 27
WINNER ILASA Merit Award of Excellence
ILASA Awards 2015
upmarket residential homes, sporting facilities such as golf courses, nature and heritage reserves, and parks within a gated community. IRS was encouraged as part of a government strategy to diversify the economic base of Mauritius from sugar cane to diversified tourism and the international property market. At first, IRS was highly successful but when the recession hit, it became clear other development models might be more resilient. The original concept of Azuri Resort Town was an unusual blend of IRS and local mixed development by privately owned companies. Azuri’s topography determined the layout, with lagoons, conservation of indigenous vegetation, the river, and dominance of the barachois (coastal lagoons or ‘sea dams’) to be taken into account. The majority of the site had traditionally been cultivated for sugar cane and the poor natural beach at the river mouth had deteriorated due to silt contamination and the creep of agriculture. However, the site could be used to take advantage of seaward slopes and excellent ocean views. A broad plan was prepared for the site, based on concepts by UK-based Leonard Design Architects, with a team taking the
Pro Landscaper Africa / October 2015
scheme forward, including Planning Partners International. The full Azuri project will ultimately consist of several phases and, to date, Phase 1 has been completed including a hotel, spa, commercial units and eight residential apartment blocks, while the first apartment building of Phase 2 is now under way. The Phase 1 master plan integrated private and public amenities, with commercial buildings creating and defining a publicly accessible beach front. A hotel acts as a recreational service centre for the resort, and apartment blocks of varying character and scale create a mixed neighbourhood of local and international residents. With a strong landscape framework, the development enjoys enhanced features such as an ‘artificial beach’ and an urban tropical forest. Time will show the benefit of such extensive plantings, not only for their scenic and ecological value but for the benefit of the local microclimate. While the tropical island climate is a novelty for tourists, permanent residents require shade from the midday sun and shelter from the south-easterly trade winds. Future phases of development and landscaping will continue to further diversify the
environment in and around Azuri. These phases will include the River Club, Waterfront, Beach Club, and Forest Club. Waterscapes, of course, had to be a central theme, with Azuri Resort Town offering a unique convergence of watersport and training opportunities thanks to six natural water areas. There are further opportunities to create swimming pools, watercourses, man-made islands and beaches. The local trade winds provide a steady source of power for dinghies and windsurfers. The river valley and barachois provide sheltered areas for watersport training, with the open sea beyond providing activities such as kayaking, sailing, scuba diving and snorkelling, as well as dolphin and whale watching. Before construction could start, Planning Partners International had to deal with significant areas of typical tropical island vegetation, as well as sugar cane, of which many areas will have to be removed to accommodate future development. However, exotic tropical trees were identified and surveyed to preserve them as features within the urban design, while extensive mangrove thicket was also integrated and protected by raised boardwalks. Woodland will be sensitively managed to frame beach areas, providing shade and seclusion, and eroded areas of the beach front will be restored to lush, indigenous coastal vegetation, which will quickly create a sustainable tropical environment, attracting birds and displaying native flowering trees and shrubs. The overgrown forest running either side of the river will be restored through clearance of www.prolandscaper.co.za
invasive alien plants, helping to raise the canopy to allow views and access to the riverâ€™s edge. Walkways and canoe landing stages will further encourage recreational use of the river and lagoon. Transplanted coconut palms, filau and other tropical trees will be planted to combine with indigenous tree and palm specimens to create a substantial green infrastructure. Existing avenues of trees will be protected and extended in areas where they border roads and walkways. Forests of alien tree species will be cleared and replanted in a landscape pattern of indigenous forest, suitable to the character of adjacent developments. All plantings, especially tropical flowering hedges, including Hibiscus and Bougainvillea, will provide shelter and shade. Lawns will be combined with walkways, cycle routes and other facilities to create an extensive coastal park, embracing barachois and river to create a landscape framework for Azuri. REFERENCES Client BlueLife Limited Tel: +(230) 244 3138/48 Email: email@example.com www.bluelife.mu Landscape architect Planning Partners International Tel: 021 418 0510 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.planpart.co.za Master plan architect Leonard Design Architects
ABOUT PLANNING PARTNERS INTERNATIONAL Tel: +44 (0) 115 945 0080 Email: oďŹƒce@leonarddesignarchitects.com leonarddesignarchitects.com Quantity surveyors Hooloomann & Associates Tel: +(230) 467 7000 Email: email@example.com Architect Macbeth Architects and Designers Tel: +(230) 208 2118 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.macbeth.mu
Planning Partners International is a multi-disciplinary company with a wide range of experience and in-depth expertise in urban and regional planning, urban design and landscape architecture. The company has clients worldwide and its planning and design experience spans more than 35 years, ranging from regional plans and large residential and golf estates to marinas, resorts and commercial precincts. Planning Partners undertakes work within South Africa, while international work is undertaken by Planning Partners International. www.planpart.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 29
Expand your pallette with
FOCUS ON SOIL Atlantic Fertilisers’ Bio Ocean Zeoplant’s moisture-retaining soil additive Zeoplant is an extremely effective water-retaining soil additive, consisting of natural minerals and treated with a natural organic component. Its unique features include a large active surface, high porosity, extremely good water retention, and high cation exchange capacity. Zeoplant halves the necessary quantity of irrigation water because it ties up a high amount of water, reduces the percolation rate of water in the soil, drastically cuts the use of NPK fertilisers by preventing leaching out, and improves soil structure. Zeoplant has three major components common for good quality natural soils – two inorganic natural rock types (rhyolitic tuff and phyllosilicate), and cellulose.
Bio Ocean is a soil and plant conditioner manufactured by composting seaweed, fishmeal, humic acid and poultry manure. The key ingredient, seaweed, contains natural minerals and growth stimulants which help to maximise plant growth. It also retains moisture and increases the moisture level of cell sap, in turn increasing the plant’s ability to resist frost and heat stress. Bio Ocean will retain up to 120% of its own weight in moisture, significantly increasing the soil’s ability to hold on to water. Bio Ocean increases resistance to pests and disease, stimulates healthy growth above and below ground and improves the wellbeing of soil and plants.
Reliance Certified Organic Soil and Plant Conditioner South Africa faces a severe water crisis, with the public encouraged to be aware of water consumption. There are many easy ways to save water in and around the home. One is to use compost, as it improves water-holding organic matter in soil. Soil erosion is a major problem but you can improve water filtration by covering soil with organic mulch, adding compost, and planting. Organic mulch releases nutrients into the soil as it slowly breaks down. It also retains moisture on warm days. Adding compost to soil provides food for earthworms, while covering soil with vegetation alleviates erosion by anchoring soil with roots. Reliance Certified Organic Soil and Plant Conditioner can be used for herbs, potted plants, and vegetable gardens.
Stockosorb water-storing crystals Stockosorb crystals work in the root zone of plants. The crystals become gel-like sponges, absorbing and storing water and nutrients. Stockosorb cannot withdraw water from plants so water and nutrients are taken up directly by the fine root hairs growing into Stockosorb, leading to fast, intensive root growth. Stockosorb also reduces soil compaction and improves porosity. When added to potting mix or garden soil, the crystals absorb up to 400 times their own weight in water, cutting water waste, increasing time between watering and improving plant survival during dry times. Stockosorb is effective for up to five years, then harmlessly biodegrades.
www.efekto.co.za Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015 31
FOCUS ON IRRIGATION K-Rain’s RPS 75i rotor This new addition to US manufacturer K-Rain’s line of rotors retains the features and benefits of its RPS 75 but with “improved hydraulics and superior uniformity”. K-Rain said that to reduce radius and distance, the nozzle has to be changed or the break-up screw engaged in most rotors, which limits maximum reduction to 25% and causes uneven watering. With the RPS 75i, the patented Flow ShutOff controls distance and water flow proportionately up to 50%, K-Rain said, adding that the RPS 75i delivers even water distribution, eliminates dry spots and saves water. South African manufacturer and wholesaler Agriplas distributes the RPS 75i.
CASE STUDY William Herbert Sports Complex
Rain Bird’s 5000 Series rotors Rain Bird’s 5000 Series rotors are ideal for medium to large-sized turf areas and evenly distribute water from 7m to 15m. 5000 Series rotors incorporate Rain Curtain technology and are engineered to deliver a uniform spray pattern. An optional in-stem pressure regulation system can also help to save more water, Rain Bird said. The larger water droplets produced by Rain Curtain technology prevent misting and airborne evaporation so the “right amount of water is delivered to the right place”. Gentle, close-in watering eliminates dry spots around the rotor, prevents seed washout and allows the turf to grow without matting or bending. The rotors come with a heavy-duty cover, a slip clutch mechanism, a heavy-duty retract spring to assure positive pop-down, a pressure-activated wiper seal to protect against debris, and additional O-rings and seals.
OpenSprinkler irrigation controller Urban Landscape Solutions (ULS) used a Ditch Witch trenching machine to install drainage and irrigation lines at the William Herbert Sports Complex in Cape Town. The machine can dig up to a depth of 70cm, in line with LIA standards for irrigation installation. ULS said the walk-behind trencher proved fast and simple to operate, with the operator controlling the speed and direction of the machine. The company said the Ditch Witch trenching machine paid for itself within a year and was able to complete the William Herbert project, which involved 11 sports ﬁelds, in record time. www.urbanlandscape.co.za
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
OpenSprinkler is an smart irrigation controller that can be managed via your smartphone, tablet or computer. Ideal for residential and commercial use, a free app is available for iOS, OSX, Android and Windows 8 devices. You can also manage the device from most web browsers. The controller is fully customisable: you can assign names to irrigation zones, create programs that run on specific days or intervals, run manual programs, check your watering history and preview irrigation schedules. Out of the box the controller handles eight stations but zone expansion boards can be added to increase this 16 stations at a time, up to 56 in total. OpenSprinkler also supports a master station which can be used to turn on a borehole pump or open a main valve. The controller can also use real-time weather algorithms to automatically adjust watering and a rain sensor can be connected.
What are the relative costs involved with these cordless products? Despite higher start-up costs, STIHL’s cordless
Leading global manufacturer STIHL is known for its diverse and innovative range of power tools and equipment for various applications and multiple target users that range from industrial to professional and domestic markets. We caught up with Nadine Green to hear more about the company’s cordless power range
How does STIHL contribute to a ‘greener’ environment? Ecology and high technology go hand in hand at STIHL. As technologies develop, the company constantly looks to minimise the environmental impact of its products. Energy consumption, exhaust emissions and noise, as well as users’ health and safety, have been important criteria for our product development for many decades. STIHL’s battery-powered range of products is a prime example. With zero emissions, low noise and low vibration levels, this range is ideal for any forwardthinking landscaping company. Tell us more about your cordless range? STIHL cordless products combine innovative motor and lithium-ion battery technology with ﬁrst-rate engineering to deliver exceptional performance. Their brushless, electronically controlled electric motor is energy-efﬁcient and requires little servicing. Thanks to its outstanding efﬁciency, every ounce of battery power is translated into an impressive performance served by 36V lithium-ion batteries. The result? The same performance and power that users worldwide have come to expect from STIHL, with added on-site convenience and comfort. www.prolandscaper.co.za
What is the extent of this range? STIHL’s battery-powered range encompasses numerous cordless tools for professional markets. This range of cordless chainsaws, brushcutters, hedge trimmers, pole pruners, blowers, pruning shears and sweepers is designed to meet the many tough demands of professional landscapers. With no emissions and low noise levels, these products are ideally suited for use in noise-sensitive areas such as parks, residential areas, golf courses, hospitals and schools. What are the benefits of this range of products to the landscaping community? STIHL’s cordless power system offers convenience with great performance. The quiet, emission-free battery power allows full freedom of movement while carrying out landscaping tasks and grounds maintenance. Batteries are long-lasting thanks to STIHL’s lithium-ion technology. Light and compact, these products offer comfort and ease of use and start at the touch of a button – no fuel mixing or cumbersome extension cords. Above all else, STIHL’s range of cordless products is cost effective, with no fuel costs and minimal servicing requirements.
products are generally more cost-effective to run than petrol-powered products. The savings in fuel and servicing mean the products can potentially pay for themselves within months. Thanks to an innovative modular design, the batteries and chargers are compatible with all STIHL cordless power products, so rather than having to buy one battery and charger per product, users can use the same battery and charger across their range of products. Where can you find STIHL products? STIHL cordless products are available exclusively from STIHL’s nationwide network of more than 150 specialist servicing dealers, ensuring customers get expert advice and superior after-sales service. What are STIHL’s plans for the future? The STIHL name has stood for revolutionary technology and innovative ideas ever since the ﬁrm was founded almost 90 years ago. In line with this ethos, STIHL looks forward to extending its range of products for professional landscapers, with particular focus on cordless technology and the beneﬁts it has to offer the industry.
CONTACT Name Nadine Green Company name STIHL Email email@example.com Tel 033 846 3800 Web www.stihl.co.za For more information on STIHL’s cordless range or to ﬁnd your nearest dealer, visit www.stihl.co.za or call 0800 336 996
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Pro Landscaper Africa asks a few quick-fire questions to gain an insight into the people who are lighting up our industry To feature on these pages in future issues, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 021 410 8957
CRAIG DE NECKER
TOBIAS G. MAHNE
Managing director, The Friendly Plant
Senior landscape architect, KWP Create www.kwpcreate.com
Your most referred to gardening book of all time Diarmuid Gavin and Terence Conran’s Outdoors. Most inspirational garden Petrin Gardens in Prague. Piece of equipment you couldn’t live without My Lenovo ThinkPad T Series. It’s robust and hardworking, just like me! Favourite plant Roystonea regia (Cuban royal palm) and Cocos nucifera (coconut palm). How is sustainability embedded into your business? We don’t only design and install gardens, we also own and operate our own
44-acre plant farm, where we propagate plants and trees for sale across Africa, the Middle East and Europe.
Your most referred to gardening book of all time Astrid Zimmerman’s Constructing Landscape.
Biggest life influence My folks. Their support and guidance has made me who I am today. I hope they are as proud of me as I am of them!
Most inspirational garden I would like to visit Versailles to see if the scale and magnitude is as inspiring as I am led to believe.
Describe yourself in three words Creative, witty, bright.
Piece of equipment you couldn’t live without A pen or pencil and a piece of paper.
Three people you would invite to a dinner party Chevy Chase, Moeletsi Mbeki, and Dave Grohl. A lifelong (sporting) fan of… Ferrari F1. Favourite drink Lime milkshake, but hold the cream topping and sprinkles.
Pro Landscaper Africa / November/December 2015
Favourite plant I am passionate about South African bulbs, they are underrated, exquisite and tough. How is sustainability embedded into your business? Good planning and design forms the basis of a
sustainable project, the rest can be sorted out according to project, budget and client. Biggest life influence I’d like to credit my parents for leading me down the right path and laying a good foundation and my wife for exposing me to a wider world of art and design. Describe yourself in three words Energetic, diverse, conscientious. Three people you would invite to a dinner party Frank Lloyd Wright, Madiba and Clark Kent. A lifelong (sporting) fan of… Jamaica’s bobsled team! Favourite drink Alto Rouge 2006.
CLARE BURGESS Landscape architect www.linkedin.com/in/clare-burgess-3a296124 Your most referred to gardening book of all time Plants In Garden History, by Penelope Hobhouse. Most inspirational garden Barnsley House garden in England, and Shalamar Bagh (Garden) in Srinagar, Kashmir. Piece of equipment you couldn’t live without Secateurs.
Favourite plant Clivia miniata. How is sustainability embedded into your business? As a landscape architect, teacher at UCT on landscape architecture and promoter of permacultural philosophies, I constantly promote good design practices.
Biggest life influence My 35 years practising landscape architecture, including 12 years of personal psychotherapy and eight years studying meditation and mindfulness at the School of Practical Philosophy. Describe yourself in three words Outspoken, civic-minded, hard-working.
Three people you would invite to a dinner party Sir Terence Conran, Ernst van Jarsveld, and Angelina Jolie. Lifelong (sporting) fan of I am not a fan of any sport. I believe in participating in activities, not watching. Favourite drink Spicy chai latte with frothy milk on top.
Landscape architect, Outline Landscape Architects
Owner, Paarman Landscapes
Your most referred to gardening book of all time Trees Of Southern Africa, by Keith Coates Palgrave. Most inspirational garden The High Line, New York. Piece of equipment you couldn’t live without Doodle book and pen. Favourite plant Erythrina lysistemon – but any indigenous tree. How is sustainability embedded into your business? It is always a driving factor in design considerations,
especially in plant and material choice. Biggest life influence My creative mother. Describe yourself in three words Happy, easy-going, humble. Three people you would invite to a dinner party The Dalai Lama, Arianna Huffington, Maria Popova. A lifelong (sporting) fan of… The German national soccer team. Favourite drink Gin and tonic.
Your most referred to gardening book of all time It was A-Z book but now I use the PlantZAfrica website – www.plantzafrica.com. Most inspirational garden My garden. Piece of equipment you couldn’t live without Leatherman. Favourite plant Dietes grandiflora. How is sustainability embedded into your business? We strive for this, from water management to recycling,
compost making, veg and herb gardening and low energy consumption. Biggest life influence God’s creation. Describe yourself in three words Husband, father, (landscape) designer. Three people you would invite to a dinner party Wife, mom, Jesus. A lifelong (sporting) fan of… Sharks. Favourite drink Craft beer.
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