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Concept to Delivery


April 2018



Welcome to the April Edition of Pro Landscaper Africa 2018. Development Agencies/Authorities and Municipalities should be looking to or not looking to when it comes to our Public Park Design. It’s a pertinent topic involving Urban Designers and Landscape Architect’s alike.


am sure you will notice the growing number of sections within our monthly issues- which we are thrilled about! Our most recent additions are the Landscape Architects Journal, showcasing projects in the design phase & Designer Plants, which features plant palettes of beautifully designed gardens around South Africa. We have a wonderful line-up for you this month with quite a strong focus on Municipal builds. Our Agenda focuses on who Government

With the movement of the design industry and the growing availability and affordability of 3d printers, we explore the notion of utilising these desktop 3d printers as a form of modelling for clients as well as scaling, along with many other benefits. We visit the Site of Samgro in this edition, a well-known plug producer who services our landscape contracting and wholesale grower markets as well as showcase some spectacular portfolios. Kicking off the portfolio section is an iconic building which has achieved a 6-star Green Star Rating, The Department of Environmental Affairs. We then join cndv landscape architects as they undertake a restoration project at Brooke Chapel on the premises of Bishops Diocesan College. The beautification

Cover Image by Studio 88 Photography

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of the main routes into Stellenbosch has seen our next project in Muelplein upgrade an existing island. This was designed by Ixia Landscape Architects. Habitat Landscape Architects reinvent Murray Park in Springs, Johannesburg, with a Space Aged theme to inspire its many visitors, after which IYER tackles an ‘ILASA Merit of Excellence’ winning project, titled Corridors of Freedom, which incorporates Westbury pedestrian bridge and park. We have a brilliant array of nurture contributors in this edition, each putting forward their recommendations for indigenous planting for your next projects. You can also meet some industry faces in the little interviews section of our magazine. We do hope that you enjoy the read and we will see you all next month!

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News Shed & Association News Industry news from around South Africa


The Agenda Who should Government Development Agencies/Authorities and Municipalities be looking to or not looking to when it comes to our public park design






Leading by Example by Tiaan Laker & Boogertmen + Partners


Going to the Chapel by cndv landscape architects


Reinventing the Wheel by Ixia Landscape Architects

Site Visit Pro Landscaper Africa visit’s the sites of its industry suppliers: This month we feature Samgro


Space-Age Play by Habitat Landscape Architects


Corridors of Freedom by IYER


3D Printing Focus on the benefits of 3d printing



Landscape Architects Journal A new section which focuses on projects before construction phase. This month we feature Outerspace Landscape Architect’s Palm Ridge Regional Park


Indigenous Planting


Designer Plants: Softscaping at its best


Little Interviews

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RSA, presumably because naturally occurring species do not produce massive amounts of viable seed. Seed of Cynodon dactylon however is currently imported into South Africa from the USA and other countries.

Cape Town. Buffalo and kikuyu have has also disappeared from road verges, commercial landscapes, school sport fields and important environmental areas where they were not irrigated as neither are drought-tolerant”, he adds.

Erosion control – pioneer species “Cynodon dactylon has prevented massive areas from being eroded”, says Kruger. “It holds what soil is left and begins the process of rebuilding it. Almost every lawn in South Africa will have some or more of the species. The two species (C. dactylon & C. transvaalensis) are considered pioneer grasses. Both are indigenous to South Africa and they are used extensively as crops to rehabilitate areas that have been denuded of cover.

“Yet with a little grey water irrigation on indigenous Cynodon dactylon we are able to control dust, erosion, many coastal and hydrophobic sands by supplying water saving options to school sports grounds, with and without poor infrastructure. We use Cynodon dactylon as an alternative grass, sold and planted as roll on lawn or sold as runners or plugged rooted cuttings or seed”, says Morris.

In many of the summer‐rainfall areas of South Africa, Cynodon species are components of seed mixes which are sown to form a vegetation cover to reduce the risk of high rates of soil erosion. In most instances in higher rainfall areas, if a local Cynodon spp. is planted as a cover crop and if left alone, it will will grow rapidly and throttle itself. To maintain its vigour, it needs to be cut to prevent it dying out.

Sterile seed “Cynodon dactylon comprises numerous strains or ecotypes some of which are fertile and produce viable seed and other varieties which although they may produce inflorescences, the seed is sterile or of low viability”, says Mike Kruger of Top Crop Nursery (incorporating Superlawn), Pietermaritzburg.

Hydroseeding since 1970s Every road cutting that has been ‘hydroseeded’ since its introduction in the early seventies has used Cynodon dactylon seed in its mix.


The South African Landscapers Institute (SALI) categorically oppose any proposal that the indigenous and water wise Cynodon dactylon be declared a Category 2 invasive species across South Africa. Cynodon dactylon – also known commonly as couch, bermudagrass or kweek is: indigenous to South Africa, water wise, important for eco-systems and critical to SA’s biodiversity. It is also already planted across South Africa in schools, national parks, stadiums, municipalities, landscapes and tourism facilities. There are currently no indigenous plant species listed in the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act (No. 10 of 2004) (NEMBA) Alien and Invasive Species (AIS) Lists and Regulations. What are the issues of concern in the landscaping industry? Drought-stricken Cape “The drought has rendered traditional coastal Buffalo grass (Strenotaphrum secundatum) and Kikuyu grass (Pennisetum clandestinum) nonexistent in most domestic residences, drought ravaged public open spaces, public gardens and parks” says Richard Morris of Starke Ayres,

Cynodon transvaalensis is a species that is very similar to Cynodon dactylon and comprises varieties that are also fertile and others that are sterile. The identification of the two species can only be done by the inflorescence. The naturally occurring Cynodon spp. have always been shy seeders. No commercial production of Cynodon spp. seed occurs in the

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To therefore control the propagation and the planting of the species is futile. Cynodon dactylon is not a threat to the environment and to the contrary, is one of the most important grass species available to rehabilitation experts, landscapers, sportsmen and gardeners in the country. To remove this indigenous species from all the locations in which it is currently planted would cause ecological devastation across the country and potentially result in job losses.


FIRE-RESISTANT LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE DISSERTATION EARNS UCT STUDENT TOP COROBRIK AWARD protected by the introduction of fire-resistant native and non-native vegetation, strategically placed fire breaks and stringent management systems. These systems can be replicated on a smaller scale for domestic gardens for which she has proposed a specific vegetation palette and planting arrangements. Brukman is confident that the concepts set out in her dissertation are readily capable of practical, economic and effective application. Taking the second-place title was fellow student, Roux Lubbe, whose ‘Bee-cause: designing to receive’ dissertation explored designing land forms and soil to encourage flowering species that would bridge the boundary between the Cape Honey Bee foraging grounds and beepollinated farms. The result would build valuable socio-economic, educational and environmental relationships while alleviating the local Honey Bee crises. The devastating Knysna fires of June 2017 almost destroyed the family home of Louise Brukman, a former Master's student at the University of Cape Town. Her parents risked their lives to save the house and many people close to her were unable to protect their homes. These events inspired her to explore Landscape Architectural solutions that could prevent this kind of disaster. Her dissertation - ‘Reconfiguring the Burnt Scar’- not only tackled this global problem but also earned her Corobrik’s Most Innovative Final Year Landscape Architecture Award for 2017. The annual award – assessed by external examiners - is presented to a Landscape Architecture student with the most innovative dissertation. All graduating students in the UCT Master of Landscape Architecture programme are eligible for the award. Louise Brukman took this year’s top award, earning her the R6 000 prize with the runner-up, Roux Lubbe, walking away with R4 000 for his dissertation, ‘Bee-cause: designing to receive’. “I’ve always been interested in ‘water-wise’ and ‘fire-resistant’ design and I was researching this subject in June 2017 when the Knysna Fires occurred,” explained Brukman. “I felt there were opportunities within the realms of Landscape Architecture to assist in repairing what was damaged and preventing future catastrophes on such a massive scale.” 8

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

Her concept has a range of applications from small scale domestic gardens to vast areas of land, including plantations and the like. It assesses fire management and maintenance practices together with the implementation of fire-resistant vegetation strategies. “I researched integrated Landscape Architectural systems directed at the protection of both urban and rural areas from micro to macro areas,” she continued. “If a fire breaks out in a micro area, like a domestic garden, this system will form a protective mechanism, retarding and containing the spread of fire to proximate and surrounding areas. While the dissertation focused on the Knysna region, the principle behind the concept can be applied to various regions globally, with adaptations made to vegetation types depending on the nature of the area. She explained that the origin of the Knysna fire was within the vicinity of the Pine plantation – a vegetation type that is considered to be an ‘extreme fuel load’. Without sufficient and well-maintained infrastructure or regularly controlled ecological fires, the wildfire spread extremely rapidly to rural, urban and suburban areas including informal settlements. Brukman’s dissertation proposes, among other things, replacing portions of Pine plantations with other commercially-viable trees, which grow at a similar rate but have superior fire resistance characteristics. These areas would be further

“It is our responsibility as landscape architects, to weave ecological, economic and social threads through our projects,” explained Lubbe. “These should ultimately tackle environmental issues and drive the economy.” The project proposes designing land-form in a set of corridors in the sub-urban/agricultural area of upper Elsieskraal River which would nurture a palette of high-nectar producing flower species ideal for bees. These seasonal flowering corridors would splice through farms, bridging the gap between when bees are required for agricultural crop pollination and when the mono-cultural crops don’t produce nectar, but bees still require nutrients for survival. “The by-products from this scheme, including flowers, honey and other bee products, can be used to assist local small businesses, creating a prosperous local economy,” said Lubbe. Commenting on the landscaping award, Corobrik’s Manager Western Cape, Christie van Niekerk, said: “This award serves to both acknowledge the work done in the landscape architecture field as well as promoting the incredible concepts emanating from our masters’ students. These dissertations are looking at practical solutions to global problems by encouraging positive work within the natural environment. I hope that those in positions of influence really take note of the ground-breaking suggestions being put forward by these leaders in the landscaping industry.”



The Guild of Landscape Designers (GoLD) is the only organisation aiming at the needs of the individual landscape designers. Our membership includes designers from across Southern Africa. The reason for GoLD’s establishment was for the advancement and increased awareness of the role of professional Landscape Designers operating within the green industries and has been working to this end since its inception in 2004. The organisation continues to grow from strength to strength with an ever-increasing footprint. GoLD has grown over recent years with a rich diverse culture, showcasing young and

SOUTH AFRICAN NURSERY ASSOCIATION (SANA) The South African Nursery Association has a proud 70-year track record linking growers, retailers, allied trade and bedding plant growers. With a deep understanding of the diversity within the industry, as well as the need for networking platforms and representation at government level, SANA has ensured that all of the different associations are represented by a chairperson who holds a seat on the executive council board of SANA. Allied, Bulb & Seed Trade Association (ABSTA) is made up of all suppliers of non-plant material including posts, fertilisers, water features, ceramics, pesticides, seeds and bulbs. It is the biggest and most diverse group within SANA. Pesticides, packaging and recycling are hot topics on the agenda of this association.

old landscapers. To support this growth the organisation has successfully managed to have its membership demographic represented in their board. Most recently 2017/2018 Tristan Price (Male, 24) and Lesego Seloane (Female, 27) have been added on to the Executive Committee of GoLD.

In our experiences, it is very difficult to survive the intense problem-solving world of landscape design without a support network. To us it is very important to make the process of being able to design to the maximum levels of creativity possible for every project and client and, with the support of GoLD that can happen.

One of our key focus areas is to support new landscapers coming into the industry and to help achieve this we have an active calendar of events that includes networking events for members to be introduced to ranges of new products and services available. We also arrange a series of workshops each year to enable members to continue to expand their knowledge and skills. All these events are eagerly anticipated by our members.

We have a jam-packed line up for 2018. For more information please see our website or call us on 011 568 4420. Follow us on social media.

In addition, we have a hotly sought after mentorship programme that helps newer designers to work with our top Platinum members to help them find their feet in our amazing industry.

Bedding Plant Growers Association (BPGA) represents a group of growers specialising in flower and vegetable seedlings. This vibrant group actively markets on social media and in consumer magazines to grow market share and awareness of bedding plants. Published articles include Bedding Plants of the Month, companion planting and new variety releases. Garden Centre Association (GCA) could be called the ‘face of SANA’, as they interact directly with consumers and not just other industry members. GCA garden centres are marketed through our Life is a Garden marketing campaign ( An annual Garden Centre Competition raises standards within this association and we pride ourselves on the service and professionalism our members exhibit. Growers Association incorporates all ornamental growers – shrubs, trees, flowering plants, roses and even indoor plants. The second biggest association within SANA, this group strives to produce consistent world-class quality plant material. The group hosts growers tours to various regions within South Africa (and soon to Europe) to exposure its members to new innovations, production and propagation

techniques. Marketing via the Life is a Garden consumer website educates and inspires consumers on what to plant each month – aptly called Top Plants of the Month. SANA, working with these four sectors, creates a strong chain from producer to end-user. Joint networking functions such as our annual Trade Fairs and Conventions form the perfect platform for members to forge business links. For more information:

"The South African Nursery Association has a proud 70-year track record linking growers, retailers, allied trade and bedding plant growers" Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018


Image by Habitat Landscape Architects

City making is a complex task. With the common goal being to establish a Sustainable Urban Environment and focusing on walkability, non-motorised transport and healthy public environments, we need a multidisciplinary approach to the way in which we create our environments…


“Who should Government Development Agencies/Authorities and Municipalities be looking to or not looking to, when it comes to our Public Park Design.”


Sub-Consultant @ Aurecon Group

"Local authorities and development agencies therefore, need to embrace a wider view of landscape design and an appreciation of a new approach that moves the debate beyond beautification, to one which actively seeks better places structured on the needs of people as the primary users and ‘enablement’as the brief."

Involving diverse communities in the process of urban park design and place making can sometimes be challenging. We still have a long way to go to crafting innovative solutions in order to fully incorporate surrounding communities. Assessing community needs can be a daunting task and a “top down” implementation approach has often failed as a result of a lack of buy in by the community members. By working in close collaboration with professional stakeholder and communication specialists, the process of Asset Building Community Development (ABCD) can be used as a vehicle to drive overall sustainable community commitment, thus potentially reducing urban blight and crime. Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) is grounded in the principle of “Start with what we have and build on what we got”. The process of ABCD mobilizes people based on what they care about most, and how their personal talents can best contribute to positive change. ABCD builds on the following: • Appreciate inquiry which identifies and

analyses the community’s past success (this strengthens people’s confidence in their own capacities and inspires them to take action). •

The recognition of social capital, and its importance as an asset. This is why ABCD focuses on the power of association and informal linkages within the community and the relationships built over time between community associations and external institutions.

Participatory approaches to development, which are based on principles of empowerment and ownership of the development process.

Community economic development models that place priority on collaborative efforts for economic development that makes best use of its own resource base.

Efforts to strengthen civil society. These efforts have focused on how to engage people as citizens in development, and how to make local governance more effective and responsive.


3. MARIĂ‹TTE MULDER, Landscape Technician


Professional Landscape Architect @ KWPCREATE



Director @ Newtown Landscape Architects Municipalities should adopt a multidisciplinary approach to any kind of design work whether it is buildings, civic spaces or parks, because it is a complicated environment that requires a variety of input. However, I do believe that Landscape Architects are more suitable drivers / lead designers in respect of Public Park Design as their design intent comes from a holistic approach and considers social, ecological and physical components in planning and design decisions. To make a blanket statement that there is only one profession who can achieve a desired outcome would be unfair to many of the component professions that operate within this environment. As long as the creative approach is being sought; working with the environment and considering the end users and maintenance thereof is critical. With the way the creative process unfolds, it may be the artist, the social expert or the landscape architect that comes up with the idea that could become the driver for the whole concept and final design. We also need to consider the ecological opportunities of public parks where they can be more than just recreational spaces but should be treated as functional land use that can deal


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

with multiple aspects from environmental storm water management to recreational, social and ecological spaces. The way they fit into a bigger environment should also be considered. Linking to wetlands, river systems, and ridge lines becomes important as ecological corridors in urban spaces and therefore even environmentalists could provide significant input in the design. Parks should also start with the realistic approach in terms of planning, understanding linkages, transportation routes and then these ecological corridors. Landscape Architects do have the kind of specialised experience to be able to bring all these components and aspects together as well as coordinate various disciplines within the design or planning profession to be more successful. This however must always be done against the backdrop of the Public Participation process and that is not one meeting but rather a series of interactions where the community can have a direct input in key design decisions and ultimately ensure the buy in of the community in what will be implemented, this being the most important sustainability tool of any public space, particularly parks that involve soft elements that can easily be vandalised.

Public parks have the potential to not only serve as green open spaces within the city. Beyond their environmental benefits, they also tie together fragmented neighbourhoods, encourage development and further a sense of community. It is therefore important to bring together different disciplines to create these intellectual environments. The design of public space is more powerful when skills and expertise of disciples are encouraged to work together. By crossing the boundaries, potential is explored. In concert with urban designers and other related disciplines, the discipline of landscape architecture is becoming an increasingly important contributor to the how our cities look and function. Landscape architecturally designed public spaces that embrace biodiversity and ecological principles, but also look at the bigger picture (the user, contexts, historical layers and environment) can not only diversify public space but at the same time bring together areas of disjunction. Urban designers and landscape architects can work together to identify a sense of place through a common design language that link movement corridors, sidewalks, markets, hard open spaces, public squares, parks and other green spaces. These not only serve the community but also the natural environment. Other built environment professionals also form part of this framework such as civil engineers to coordinate services and architects for building heritage and building use. Authorities should however, in the first instance, be looking to urban designers and landscape architects to conceptualise projects. Through holistic thinking, public park, open space and movement corridor design can benefit the city dwellers as well as the environments.




Partner@ Insite Landscape Architects

Perspective on Public Parks Design On a philosophical note I think that at the heart of the question is that we rather need to ask: “Should Government Development Agencies/ Authorities and Municipalities not rather be looking inwards first… when it comes to our Public Park Design?” We need to create an awareness of the disparity that still exists within our cities – both socially, culturally, historically and economically! I work a lot in communities that do not have much and historically public spaces were not invested in, or developed to their full potential. Neglected and marginalised communities do not have the same background needs and

same frame of mind that many other communities have become accustomed to - the ideal quality public spaces that have developed over time and matured to the level of becoming a true community asset, an enterprise and a living sphere that is cared for and nurtured by all. In marginalised communities the typical public participation forums that I see, the needs analysis typically looks at the following (prioritise for upgrade of public open spaces): •

Public Safety with regards to negative public spaces attracting crime, vandalism and vagrancy

Health and Safety i.e. Flooding, subsidence, severe pollution and erosion control issues

Children’s safety. parks are often located close to busy roads

In order to bridge the gap towards creating more inclusive landscapes we need to work hard at making the access and living standards better in our disadvantages communities. A small but vital part of that is to get the awareness going and social injustices rectified - better Public Park Design has a huge role to play in this and can be a catalyst for positive change! Concluding remarks To answer the real question “Who should Government Development Agencies/ Authorities and Municipalities be looking to/ not looking to, when it comes to our Public Park Design?” In reality and ironically so, the answer does not lie in the political sphere. We need designers with real drive and vision to serve the community in justice and fairness!


“Ever since I was a little girl I have been interested in trees. My life now is just trees and… um…and champagne” - Judi Dench

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Associate Landscape Architect @ Square 1 Landscape Architects

Principal Partner & Chief Creative Director of IYER


As Landscape Architects, we understand the importance of sound urban space design in fostering strong communities and resilient cities. In the face of rapidly changing socio-political and climatic environments, the well-considered design of urban spaces and infrastructural networks is essential to ensure that cities can respond effectively to ever-increasing challenges. The definition of public urban space must be expanded to include more than public parks and plazas. Public space forms the essential component through which communities are shaped and livable urban environments are created. Not only do public spaces provide opportunities to bring communities together, they provide important ecological refuges, allowing communities to engage with natural systems, thereby engendering social consciousness and change. The city must be seen as a living organism that functions holistically through a system of green infrastructural networks. These networks must be designed as an integrated whole, through the interlinkage of urban spaces, transport routes, service infrastructure, ecological systems, river systems, and the built environment to create resilient and environmentally responsive cityscapes. The success of sustainable urban drainage initiatives in creating resilient, costefficient landscapes that perform various social and ecological functions, provides a prime example. Landscape Architects are trained in a broad range of subjects including city planning and urban design, environmental systems, public engagement, master planning and construction detailing. Through a collaborative process, this skillset allows us to develop urban spaces that are responsive to context, encourage social interaction and community habitation, and allow biodiversity to form a key component. While collaboration with stakeholders, authorities and fellow design professionals is vital, Landscape Architects are ideally placed to ensure that our public spaces are optimized to perform all the various functions our cities demand. 14

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

The understanding and significance of public space design is paramount to the changing nature of the South African city, and is particularly important in redressing the ills of our inherited cities. The understanding of landscape design as being fundamentally ‘humanist’ and serving the needs of people within built spaces is key to placing landscape architecture within the agenda of making better cities and public places. This requires that there is a fundamental shift in landscape design from the historical view which favoured ‘park design’ along the lines of beautification, to one which understands landscape architecture and urban design as an ‘enabler’ of opportunity for the widest set of users within our public realm. This is not to say, that landscape design should not be about creating beauty, to the contrary, beautifully crafted public spaces are those that are most attractive to people. Being an ‘enabler’ within public places means creating opportunities for social engagement, economic activity,



Candidate Landscape Architect @ SSH Design Cape Town

If one (re)conceptualises a public park as a feature of recreational and ecological infrastructure then its design is comprised of many varying inputs. The public park, including all systems of public space, are a resource for its surrounding urban environment. Its intention should be derived from a certain heuristic- a synthesis of “top down/ bottom up” planning. The needs of the wider spatial framework, based on developmental and economic strategies, and the biological network requires to be balanced with the nuanced approach of the fine-grain, local community level needs. This implies that the engaged role players are particularly democratic.

responding to the needs of contemporary users including our youth and providing the infrastructure required to support these activities. A key role that landscape architecture could play working within this framework of ‘enabling’ better spaces is within the forgotten spaces of the city. These ironically, are no longer just in the periphery, but are found centrally within our cities, as can be seen in the evolution of our ‘downtowns’ and CBDs facing decline. No amount of beautification will turn these places around. A structural change and understanding is required if these spaces are to truly turn-around. Equally, these forgotten spaces include the ‘left-over’ and abandoned spaces within townships. For landscape architecture to have meaning in contemporary society, the discipline needs an interdisciplinary design approach to bring ‘enablement and dignity’ to these fundamental parts of our cities. Local authorities and development agencies therefore, need to embrace a wider view of landscape design and an appreciation of a new approach that moves the debate beyond beautification, to one which actively seeks better places structured on the needs of people as the primary users and ‘enablement’ as the brief.

This includes, not exhaustively, politicians, technocrats, urban designers and planners, landscape architects, architects, landscape contractors, sport and educational professionals, bionomic scientists, community leaders, the elderly, women and children. Recreational infrastructure can be perceived as an agent for community good – creating embedded social and cultural opportunities that bind a society together on a micro scale. On a macro environment, public space (parks) act as a vital mediation of the agitation of the modern urban space. Providing vital services to the population and natural ecology. The public sector, as the client and service provider, is a driver of change and improvement within its purview, has a responsibility for creating spaces that are imbued by equality and sustainability. Their role requires of them to balance these various interests and deliver an advantageous, practical site and can act as a node of development. The design input should be derived from this wide frame of reference.

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Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

pins. Worldwide, the interlocking tile system dominates the market as it is more resilient to wear and tear, is budget friendly, has instant Certification for critical fall height compliance, is easy to install and the quality of each tile is consistent with the next. Repairing a tiled playground is as simple as popping out and replacing an identical tile whereas a wet pour playground repair is unsightly, time consuming and difficult to carry out. Both PLAYSAFE surfaces are allweather resistant and non-slip. Children enjoy legal protection when playing on playground equipment. The implementation of playground safety standards internationally has reduced the risk of accidents by as much as 80%. In the event of an injury to a child in a playground as the result of a fall, the SANS standards and at least 9 other protection laws are used in litigation for compensation. Municipalities and private entities alike would therefore benefit from a product that carries these sound certifications. The standard of care is a minimum standard imposed by the “Duty of Care “application of the law.This law is applicable to all public playgrounds, schools, municipalities,

entertainment centers, nursery schools etc.; where a 3rd party is involved, regardless of whether there is supervision. Beneath all playground equipment with a free fall height of more than 60cm and/or equipment causing a forced movement on the body of the user (e.g. swings,slides, rocking equipment, cable ways and carousels), there must be impact protection surfacing over the entire impact area. The Critical Fall Height of the playground equipment and the type of equipment used will determine the thickness of the safety flooring required and the placement of the safety flooring.

Jeremy Stewart, owner of Seamless Flooring Systems is the Chairman of SASPI (South African Sports and Play Industry) and is the leading authority on playground safety flooring in Sub Saharan Africa. He wrote and adopted the COP (Code of Practice) for the Installation and Maintenance of Wet-Pour Safety Surfacing for Playgrounds and is regularly published with regards to playground safety for the industry.





amgro is a leader in quality plug production to the South African market. As witnessed first-hand during our monthly site visit, only top-quality plants are produced in their professional production facilities with more than 2.7 million plants produced per annum and supplied throughout Southern Africa and abroad. Samgro is also a very proud supplier to South Africa’s premium retailer, Woolworths, for their herbs and ornamental plants. Samgro was established by Daryl Sampson and his dedicated team in 2002. Daryl graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce before deciding to pursue a horticultural qualification and can be described as a man who has an undoubtable passion for what he grows as well as a very good business sense as his background would suggest. The business grew steadily and by 2010 they had grown out of their initial property, thus moving onto their own plot in Wellington about 1 hour

15 mins drive from Cape Town’s CBD. Samgro’s farm today comprises 14ha of land and has a very healthy staff compliment of 45 employees. They are a national supplier with diverse business offerings and service 3 divisions; plug production, which makes up 50% of the business; 35% of the business is the supply of ornamentals to retailers and, finally; Samgro have a stake in the agricultural market. They supply most of our major wholesalers and contractors, not to mention the large interest they hold in the exports market. Most of our landscaping wholesalers have a fantastic relationship with this plug producer and order their plugs online. Their orders are marked meticulously and kept for collection or delivery dependant on the client. Samgro also supplies larger contractors and landscape architects who wish to establish a nursery

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



onsite - which we have seen is a growing trend if space permits. During the water shortage Samgro’s water quota has been reduced to 20% capacity, so care is taken onsite to ensure water is conserved where possible. They have also built a dam to hold +- 3months worth of water at any given time, accounting for the somewhat temperamental flow from the Berg river and as a precaution during threats of drought. Walking through the farm with Daryl, the care he takes with each of his plants was certainly apparent. It was very impressive to see the extent of the species he has on offer with rows and rows of pristine and uniform varieties to feast our eyes on. From the landscaping and tree planting basics, to the exotic cacti, he and his team certainly have a good grasp for growing various varieties. Seeing his team hard at work at each of their stations, be it collecting cuttings, putting together the soilless mix in which the seeds are grown or monitoring the greenhouses and shade houses (where most of their material is grown) evoked a great sense of pride in what they do on the farm, and certainly cemented our feelings towards this company.


We asked Daryl about his take on the up-coming trends in the market to which he explains that he anticipates a growing tendency towards patio gardening with urban living becoming paramount, especially with the growing water issues. Growing food on balconies with emphasis on health and a shift away from undulating lawns is what he predicts. Daryl also expressed that he sees great potential in Africa as an untapped resource with plenty of opportunity amidst the SADEC countries of course but even higher up into African countries as well. Daryl explains that doing business in South Africa’s fluctuating economy and being situated in a country where drought repercussions are a risk, diversification is key! Every aspect of this business is tailored to how Samgro can best service a particular market, and this ability to diversify is certainly one of Samgro’s appealing qualities. That along with the great calibre of product, warm welcome and obvious expertise, we highly recommend starting your plants journey right here!


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

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3D printing

3D printing is now more accessible than ever, bringing a whole host of benefits to those making use of it.


n recent years, desktop 3D printing has become increasingly affordable for small practices. 3D-printed models are proving popular with both clients and architects; they are a great way to evaluate concepts and spatial quality, test design iterations and identify problems. 3D printers can also be used to test out ideas at different scales. This allows them to work at larger masterplan scales of 1:500 while at the same time understanding proposals at more intimate scales, ensuring a holistic design. Many practices create 3D visualisations in Revit or SketchUp, and it is easy to make these suitable for 3D printing. Only a few steps are required: exporting the model as an STL file into the slicing software, preparing it for printing, and exporting the final file to the 3D printer. The process is easily achievable and brings additional benefits to a pre-existing resource. A variety of 3D printing options are available, including stereolithography, Digital Light Processing, fused deposition modelling and selective laser sintering, but fused filament fabrication machines are generally the most affordable route. The process involves depositing thin layers of molten filament to form a model, allowing the user to create intricate detail, cavities and voids. There is usually a trade-off in terms of printer cost versus speed of production, but, once running, printers can be left to their own devices, cutting staff time spent on modelling. Depending on the printer’s sophistication, quality can vary, but even fairly modest printers should be adequate for design models – and if polished models are required, these can always be outsourced.


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A range of software to suit all budgets is emerging, from industry-specific heavyweights such as Netfabb and Fusion 360, to more beginner-friendly opensource applications, such as Cura. Other free and useful software for refining models prior to printing includes Meshmixer and Meshlab. Similarly, a broad range of printers is now available, with prices spanning 10 thousand to 100 thousand rand depending on the model. A range of benefits Printed models offer a number of benefits. They are ideal for encouraging client engagement and can eliminate the ambiguity that arises from misunderstood drawings. They have the tactile quality that clients and investors love, and communicate height, scale and massing more effectively at client presentations than a render produced from the same digital model. In-house 3D printing reduces long lead-in times for physical models and allows a greater degree of control,


and last-minute design changes can be accommodated without excessive cost. Development or prototype models can be produced with a client-pleasing immediacy – important in a project’s early stages, as the design evolves. It also facilitates a thorough investigation of design options, which is important when working on sensitive sites. Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt’s (renowned architectural firm) work at Cemex House makes extensive use of 3D printing, since the historic nature of the site requires proposals that are resolved at an intricate level. The design concept includes the insertion of contemporary interventions into the listed buildings; 3D printing these elements ensures that the design evolves in a way that is sensitive to the context. David Ayre, director of Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt states: “The 3D printer allows us to test ideas for the new interventions in separate print models to the historical and insert them as distinct elements. Using different colour filaments means these contemporary additions can be easily understood as new elements in relation to the existing buildings.” The accessible communication of proposals afforded by 3D-printed models is useful for public consultations – it can quickly communicate potential impacts, allowing for a more focused and productive discussion. Filaments are available in a variety of materials, including metal, wood and flexible options, meaning that proposals can be highlighted or blend in with the context. Once a base model of the surrounding context and buildings has been


established, it is quicker to print off and drop in further models as the design evolves. Sectional models are particularly valuable for communicating the internal spatial properties of buildings or highlighting the topographical level changes across a site. Digital site surveys are increasingly delivered with a 3D terrain surface, and these provide a useful base for models conveying level information. Strata Design (appearing in the March issue of Pro Landscaper as our interviewed international firm) employed this to good effect on its recent model for an almshouse scheme, where the visibility of the schemes and the relationship of the two locations within the townscape were particularly sensitive. “The 3D-printed model was instrumental in alleviating residents’ concerns at the public consultation and has also formed a useful basis for ongoing collaborative discussions with planners and local consultees as the model and proposals develop,” says Richard Willmott. Sophisticated printers allow for direct colour printing onto models, communicating materiality. Where texture is required, a fine level of detail can be achieved, and the technology allows for the rapid modelling of difficult geometries – a lengthy process in traditional models. It is also useful for exploring complex detail assemblies as 3D entities. Facing the future Desktop 3D printing is a convenient and costeffective way to achieve the explorative and communicative benefits of traditional models, with the speed and production efficiency resulting from a digital source. The process makes efficient use of materials, creating little waste – biodegradable filaments are even available. The technology is also evolving; innovations on the horizon, such as rapid liquid printing, will allow larger models to be printed, opening up possibilities of 1:1 scale furniture models.


1 Cemex House Masterplan Model, Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt 2 C  ourtyard study model, Strata Design ©Martin Gardner 3 Almshouse consultation model ©Strata Design

STRATA Strata is a UK-based landscape architecture practice creating usable, engaging and resilient spaces based on empathy for people and places. W:

AYRE CHAMBERLAIN GAUNT Ayre Chamberlain Gaunt is an award-winning architecture practice creating vibrant and inspiring places for people to live, work and play. W:

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



TIPS ON technique


For consultation models, emphasise difference or contextuality by printing the proposals in contrasting or complementary filaments.


Modelling good practice from an early stage makes life easier throughout the evolution of a model. Keep elements as solid volumes whenever possible, and bear in mind t hat some fine grain elements will require thickening beyond their real world dimensions in order to print at a given scale.


Hollowing the model as much as possible is a sensible investment of time during the development stages of the model, resulting in significant time reduction and use of materials when printing.


Incorporating your logo into models is an easy way to promote your practice when sharing images. Paving types and patterns can also be embossed into surfaces to convey materiality.


Play with the settings in your slicing software – relatively small changes, such as increasing printed layer thickness, can result in significant time savings, with little discernible effect on quality. There is also no point in printing a quick massing model in high quality mode if this will shortly be superseded.


Relatively large models can be produced on a small print bed by tiling the model, and if anything goes wrong, the errant slice can be reprinted individually.



Sometimes it’s better not to try to print everything as a complete model: this adds complexity and therefore takes longer to print. Discrete elements such as cars and trees can be printed as separate elements and reused, saving time and material. Use the right materials in combination to reduce printing time – there is no point printing a thick base to the model when a base in foam board or ply is adequate.

Courtyard study model, Strata Design ©Martin Gardner

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Client: Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality: Environmental Development: Metro Parks Division Landscape Architects: Outer Space Planning & Design Budget: +- R16 million.

Landscape Architect’s Journal: Palm Ridge Regional Park O

uter Space Landscape Architects was appointed in 2017 to prepare the sketch plan and construction detail drawings whilst managing the implementation thereof into Palm Ridge Regional Park. Palm Ridge lies to the south of Ekurhuleni near the Palm Ridge court, in a rapidly developing area. Whilst the urban area is developing there are no formal parks in the area, which created an opportunity for outdoor spaces to be integrated into the developing area and a community park to be established. It is a low socioeconomic community with an evidently high unemployment rate. The site is approximately 8.2 ha and consists of undulating southeast slopes with a pond in the old quarry site. There are no major geological challenges. The Brief The brief was to develop a high calibre regional park similar to Spruitview Park, one of Ekurhuleni’s flagship regional parks.


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

The emphasis is on providing a mixed activity venue that will allow the park to host events as well as offer a variety of other recreational facilities simultaneously. Features to be included are: • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Amphitheatre Ablutions Caretakers house Active recreation (walking, fitness, gym trim areas;) Play (play equipment and climbing wall) Skateboard park Passive recreation Picnic & braai facilities Gazebo/lapa; Footpaths. Street furniture. Tree and grass planting Irrigation

Design Communicating with and incorporating the community’s feedback was an important component of the design process.

The visual narrative integrated elements of the African culture such as Ndebele or Mali patterns and colours. These patterns were extended to the shapes of outdoor elements such as the geometrically splayed amphitheatre as well as the gazebo which references corbelled houses of early pioneers or the traditional Zulu Beehive structures. Our design approach was also informed by the identification and utilization of existing activities, programme and site usage. Based on our experience that the inclusion of existing patterns of movement and activity amplifies user respect for the facility and reduces the incidence of vandalism. We drew on existing movement patterns in developing the new circulation system. The park is also fenced but not gated as this often results in vandalism, particularly of the boundary fence. The nature of undulating surfaces is one of landscape architecture’s major challenges and it is essential to communicate how the topography is to be manipulated to integrate it with the proposed design. It is equally

important to understand both the aesthetic ramifications as well as the technical implications of a proposed intervention. Which references corbelled houses of early pioneers or the traditional Zulu Beehive structures. This allowed us to utilise and employ the level changes to the full, calculate soil cut and fill quantities, draw detailed sections and, most importantly, to present our design to the client in an easily accessible way. Implementation The park will be executed in two principal phases.

Phase 1: The scope of work during phase one is to undertake earthworks and structural works i.e. skateboard park, climbing wall and amphitheatre. Earthworks will entail moving approximately 14000 m3 of soil cut to fill the existing quarry and create an amphitheatre and platforms for the play park and lapa. Phase 2: This phase will entail paving, irrigation and the plantings of trees and grass. It will also incorporate an ablution facility and a caretaker’s house.

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Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



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LEADING BY EXAMPLE Tiaan Laker, together with architectural firm Boogertman & Partners, was commissioned to bring this 6 Star Green Star Rated building to life as the gateway to Tshwane’s inner city. This development reveals the new headquarters for the Department of Environmental Affairs and is a fantastic display of ethos meets design.



his design saw a new department headquarters building for the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA), located in the City of Tshwane in Arcadia Ext. 6. The site is bound to the east by Steve Biko street, to the north by Soutpansberg Road and to the west by Oumashoop Street. The latter will eventually make way for the planned extension of Nelson Mandela Drive. In the design of this building, the key considerations were to respond to the special and organisational brief of the client, to provide environmentally sensitive and sustainable architecture and to design a functional yet memorable and beautiful building to inspire generations to come. The location is regarded as a gateway to the Tshwane’s inner city therefore the design had to reflect the building’s prominence and importance, even to international visitors. Furthermore, the building had to live up to the ethos of the


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

DEA, its core values and willingness to live up to its environmental values though clearly demonstrating aspects of sustainable design, energy and resource efficiency. These efforts earned this landmark a 6 Star Green Star Rating through the Green Building Council of South Africa. The building comprises 27, 422 Square Meters, housing 1305 people with parking for 600 vehicles, so this sizing of the site made it possible to distribute the floorspace relatively evenly to create a general height of only three storeys, comfortably accessed by stairs. Each wing contains a central atrium with internal planting at ground level and clerestory windows above the roof to enhance natural light into the building. The building was conceived as three distinct elements, consisting of the masculine or utilitarian machinelike office wings, the feminine

and organic central reception building and finally the ‘bridge structure” thread that links all the elements together. The Landscape is designed as an extension of the building. The segments that radiate from inside the building extend into the landscape, drawing the visitor in, with emphasis on the main feature of the building. The main water source for the irrigation system is obtained from the grey water filtering tanks located in the basement of the building. The objective was to try and save an excess of 90% of water, of which a notional or base case landscape design requires. This was done through various water saving initiatives which include an irrigation system with drip irrigation and soil moisture sensors, Zeoplant soil additives that will assist the soil in retaining the irrigated water, as well as making use of indigenous plant material with low water requirements.



The water feature draws the visitor towards the main entrance of the building where a living green wall depicts the national flower of South Africa. The green wall system was developed in conjunction with Cape Contours in order to accommodate and facilitate all the water and maintenance requirements, ultimately providing a successful outcome. A natural veld component was introduced to the west and north of the building by reinstating the once natural vegetation. Indigenous hardy trees and various Aloe species will be introduced into this area, creating a very natural landscape design, which after the first year’s establishment will require no additional water. Great care was taken in preserving and transplanting the existing indigenous trees onsite. An indigenous plant palette is based upon the striking colour and contrast of certain species, low water requirements and how they work together as companion plants. Numerous indigenous roof gardens are provided throughout the project, which contributes to a stylised natural veld look and feel with the use of Anthericum species interplanted with various indigenous plant species. The entertainment area can be accessed from the foyer of the building. Assorted built-up planters have been incorporated in order to create seating on the lawn areas, as well as focal points. To the west of the building is a space defining hedge of Strelitzias and Erythrina trees, a striking element in its own right.

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018




Project Landscape Architect Tiaan Laker Architect Boogertman & Partners

Landscape Contractor Countryline Africa - 011 021 5570/1 Composite Timber Deck Truestyle Hard Landscaping Solutions 011 768 1305 Envirodeck - (0)11 087 6200 Pots & Seating Ottomans, Pebble Seats Igneous Concrete - 011 827 7425 Paving Corobrik - 031 560 3111 Smartstone - 011 310 1161 Aveng Infraset (carpark) - 011 876 5100 Bosun - 011 310 1176 Irrigation design & supply of materials (Installed by Countryline) Controlled Irrigation - 011 608 0767 Water feature reticulation, installation, nozzles and pumps Aquafeatures & Pumps Stainless Steel Structure for water feature EFM Engineering - 031 705 1293 Planter copings, bollards, litter bins & pots WilsonStone - 011 616 7129 Pergola Structures Moffat’s Creations Stone Cladding for Feature Planters & Gabions Mazista Tiles - 011 998 2600 Internal Planting Bidvest Execuflora 086 111 3247 Photographs: Studio 88 Photography Additional photographs for the building: Boogertman + Partners


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

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GOING TO THE CHAPEL Cndv landscape architects undertake a restoration project for this historic landmark at Bishops Diocesan College with the Brooke Chapel and Founders House as focal points.


Location: Brooke Chapel and Founders House (Restoration), Cape Town Timeline: 1 year from start to finish Cost: +- R 2 million


he Brooke Chapel was built in 1880 and Founders House was begun in 1852 with the final Brooke Wing, with tower and physics laboratory completed in 1905. Bishops (Diocesan College) required the levels around the Brooke Chapel to be reduced in order to restore levels to the way in which they were historically. Over time, levels had been increased, resulting in damp getting into the Chapel via covered weep holes. Exploratory excavations around the Chapel and at the entrance to Founders House, as well as old photographs, revealed that levels had been increased by as much as 800 mm over the years. Old entrance steps up the Chapel and Founders House had been ‘’buried’’ over time. The existing tarred court of Founders House, as well as a small gathering area in front of the historic Chapel, needed careful intervention. The school also wished to do a ‘’pilot project’’ showcasing materials, style, signage and lighting, in order to obtain comments on these, potentially to roll out on future upgrade projects. Excavations in the vicinity of the memorial garden had to be very carefully done, in order to preserve areas where ashes or memorial artefacts were located. All excavations around the buildings were done carefully by hand. Existing storm water structures, running underground, had to be located and incorporated in the site works and final designs had to be adjusted accordingly. Fortunately, the contractor, Naumann Construction, were excellent in this regard. The professionality of the builders made the work of cndv landscape architects a pleasure. Materials were chosen in consultation with the team. Existing sandstone was re-used from site to repair stone plinths and create new edges and walls. It was felt that new stone would not have the required patina to blend into the setting. The decision was made to go for unit paving in the court. Founders House and the Chapel are of the most historic landmark buildings in the Bishops’ school grounds. The decision was made to use long lasting and appropriate materials for the project – sandstone borders with cobbles in the court using genuine granite cobbles, sourced in South Africa. Founders House would receive a channel of sandstone around the base, and levels would be adjusted to expose the historic second step. Granite tiling was incorporated at the building entrance to define the space.

Photographs: Sean Thompson




Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

PORTFOLIO The schools’ historian, Paul Murray, was consulted regarding the correct interventions.

SUPPLIERS Contactor: Naumann Construction 082 651 7002 Gate Manufacturer: The Harbour Forge, Hout Bay 083 381 5331 Tile and Cobble Paver: Mazista – Cape Town 021 511 6640 Signage: Go Graphic 021 702 1970 The bollards and the plinth for an old sundial had to be custom made for the project. Fine sandstone on traditional laterite base was used as a softer surround to the Chapel. The external tiling on the new Chapel forecourt and steps / ramp is in the same granite, specially cut to form a traditional pattern. As a sample for future projects, some new signage was installed, a genuine wrought iron gate was commissioned, and some localised lighting was installed. Soft landscaping was kept to a minimum, with only some lawn being replaced where levels were adjusted, and some planting added to the memorial garden. ABOUT CNDV LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS Cndv landscape architects under the direction of Tanya de Villiers enjoyed this project immensely. Cndv has a special interest in historic landscapes and restoration projects. They pride themselves on being sensitive to context and history and inclusive in processes. They enjoy working with historians and incorporating historic material to strive towards the most correct and authentic approach to interventions around historic buildings or within historic landscapes. Cndv landscape architects have more than 20 years’ experience in a wide variety of large and small projects, mostly in and around Cape Town and Durban.

Photographs: Sean Thompson

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018





Meulplein, Stellenbosch Size: 523m2 Timeline: Design 2016. Tender awarded 3 March 2017. Installation: 4 months with ongoing work until November of 2017. Cost: +- R800 000

REINVENTING THE WHEEL The beautification of the main routes into Stellenbosch has been an initiative of the Stellenbosch Municipality with a recent project in Meulplein implemented to create a space for pedestrian interaction and to upgrade the existing island. Ixia Landscape Architects won the tender to reinvent the space, with implementation by Cape Contours.

Brief The client for this project was Stellenbosch Municipality. The desire to renovate the area stemmed from Dr Daniel Louw of Arts Association Stellenbosch in combination with the Stellenbosch Municipality. Dr Louw grew up in Stellenbosch and as a boy saw the original water mill and stream near the current day Checkers/church plein. His lifelong desire was to restore the water wheel to approximately its original location. (The wheel had been located at Wilgenhof koshuis for many years). The Arts Association Stellenbosch contracted with world renowned land artist, Strijdom van der Merwe, to propose how the water wheel could be re-incorporated into the space. Strijdom’s sketches were then presented to Stellenbosch 36

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

Municipality, who are very proactive in implementing upgrade projects. This project formed the next phase of their “Beautification of main routes into Stellenbosch”. Stellenbosch Municipality put the design of the space out to tender and Ixia Landscape Architects was appointed. Design The original site was really just the left-over space or island between 3 roads on which there was a rock garden. It wasn’t particularly functional or attractive. The space was redesigned to link Bird, Mill and Church Streets together and provide an outdoor space for the public to use. Several parking bays on either side of the island were removed and the space

incorporated into the new plein. This was a specific request from the municipality. Originally, there was a substantial fall diagonally across the site which was very awkward. In the new design, the central area was levelled out as far as possible and the height difference made up with steps on the perimeter of the site. This required cutting back and removal from site of the excess soil. A water feature was centred on the axis formed between the centre point of the existing pedestrian path and the centre point of the Cluver Markotter building. The water feature provides the link (historically and psychologically) between the water wheel and the original meulsloot. The water feature is fed from the existing meulsloot by gravity,



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Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



so no potable or “new” water has been used for the water feature. At the bottom end of the water feature, there is a sump and the water is then returned, back to the meulsloot. It was very challenging to calculate the levels to ensure that the water would reticulate. In turn, these levels determined the levels of the water feature and paving. Breaking into the existing manhole to connect the water reticulation system for the water feature to the existing meulsloot water was a difficult exercise for the contractors. The concept was for the water wheel to be seen as a sculptural piece and focal point at the end of the water feature, so it was not to be functional. The inclusion of the cog that historically formed part of the functioning of the water wheel was not part of the original scope of works. This cog was also based at Wilgenhof and was later included in Meulplein with the work being arranged by and paid for by the Arts Association Stellenbosch. Similarly, the signage regarding the history of the water wheel was designed by Strijdom & paid for by The Arts Association Stellenbosch. Sourcing Materials With a municipal tender, one generally cannot specify a specific supplier. The requirement of the municipality’s supply chain is that the tender must be as open as possible to all tenderers and not biased in favour of any one supplier

or contractor. An exception was that Corobrik Autumn pavers were specified as the Meulplein finishes needed to tie in with the existing hard landscaping in Stellenbosch and the overall municipal masterplan. Thus, it was up to the landscaping contractors to source materials. In terms of the trees, Just Trees were Cape Contours preferred supplier. Portia Bolton, Harold Daniels (Stellenbosch Municipality) and Caren Speirs went to Carl’s site, looked at the variety of different species and then selected the individual specimens. Quercus nigra(water oaks) were chosen for the historical connection of Stellenbosch to oaks and their relationship with water. Difficulties included: • • • •

Access to site and prevention of public access during construction phase Limited storage space for materials Weather delays The moving of the water wheel was very difficult. The original truck could not lift the water wheel due to the weight of the wheel.

This project has, since completion late last year, been entered into the SALI Awards of Excellence by Cape Contours.

ABOUT CAREN SPEIRS & IXIA LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS Caren qualified in 1991 and worked for EDP (Environmental Design Partnership) in Johannesburg for 3½ years. She worked on the landscaping design and contract administration of a number of commercial properties in Sandton and Rivonia and a residential development in Westcliff Ridge (now the Four Seasons Hotel). In mid-1995, she moved to the Cape and worked until the end of March 2001, for her family’s small property development business. From April 2001 to December 2006, Caren worked for DMP (Dennis Moss Partnership) where her primary project was De Zalze Golf Estate. She was also involved in Eden Island in the Seychelles. Ixia was formally registered in December 2017.


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

When you want the best, you go with the most experienced. After more than 50 years, we naturally know what we’re doing, seeing we invented the zero-turn mower back in 1964. There can only be one original, and we have one for any task.


Location: Springs, Gauteng Client: Ekurhuleni Metro Municipality Cost: +-R5.4 million Size: 38 000m² Completion Date: June 2016




Habitat Landscape Architects were commissioned, together with a team of professionals to design and redevelop the vandalised Murray Park in Springs, Johannesburg. Phase 2 saw the implementation of this design into the pleasure resort, resulting in a functional and well thought out space with a Space Age concept to awaken its many visitors.


abitat Landscape Architects were appointed by Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality (EMM) as a consulting team to render full professional services on an as-and-when required basis for various parks and cemetery development projects in EMM from 2015 to June 2017. The phase 2 upgrade of Murray Park was one of the park developments identified under this appointment. Murray Park is a pleasure resort next to the Alexander Dam in springs, Benoni. The Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality has been in the process of renovating the resort over several financial years. The park was extensively vandalised, which gave opportunity for the development of various exciting elements. The scope of works included the development and installation of a public park with braai and shade areas, three playgrounds and the upgrade of existing roads and an ablution block. Design Philosophy The existing 1960 Googie-style roof structure in the park inspired the ‘Space Age’ theme of the park as well as the colours and shapes of elements in the design. A strong emphasis is being placed on inclusive design, with playgrounds, ablutions and other amenities catering for individuals with various disabilities. The focus was on bringing a unique factor to the park development, making

extensive use of custom-designed products to fit the ‘Space Age’ theme. Habitat Landscape Architect’s worked closely with engineers and manufacturers to ensure that all designs complied with the SANS 51176-1:2010 playground safety standards. A special interest of this firm is natural playgrounds and how playing with sand, water and objects are greatly beneficial to the cognitive and emotional development of children. The 0-3-year-old playground resembles an atom with its subatomic particles. All items in this playground are specifically designed for younger users, yet still accessible and usable for children of various ages. Special attention was given to accommodate the physically challenged. A wheelchair can fit under the sand and water play table in the 0-3-year-old playground. Roller slides in the 3-8 year-old playground enable handicapped children to also enjoy the playground. The sloping berms with embedded rocks, recessed play surface and circular rings resembles the moon surface with its uneven exterior and craters. Interpretive panels educate children about space, South Africa and the Space Age. A space ship was designed for the 8-12-yearold playground with more challenging actions and activities on elevated levels. The space ship provides a 360-degree viewing platform of the whole park.


SUPPLIERS Landscaping Contractor Endemic Developments 012 819 1186 Equipment Microzone Trading 980 cc– all-inclusive play equipment 011 953 4540 Rambrass International – spaceship steel structure 082 417 7397 Green Outdoor Gyms 011 593 7687 Specialised inclusive play seats for swings Hags (SA dealer: Crazy Concepts) 021 850 0102 Paving Aveng Infraset 011 8765100 Facebricks for seating walls Corobrik 011 871 8600 Fencing Cochrane 011 394 1788 Harrop-Allin 012 803 5175 Other suppliers Deuces Landscaping Supplies 012 012 5039 Green’s Sand 011 964 3236 National Asphalt 012 562 9500 Africa Lawn & Organics 013 665 9200 SA Trampoline 060 995 4617 Steel Man 033 3422620 Industrial netting 011 608 4686


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



Their story is of a small core of individuals working as a team with a common passion, commitment and drive. They love to be creative, dream, and develop visions for the present and future with principal business activities being landscape architecture, heritage consulting and environmental planning. Their team has extensive knowledge and experience of planning, design, environmental management, project management and implementation within the local, national and international context. Habitat Landscape Architects team dynamic enables excellence and is central to delivering on time and in budget.

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

















Enduropoweredbyyamahasouthafrica | Tel: +27 259 7600 | Email: | Enduro Powered by Yamaha offers a wide variety of locally produced lawnmowers for private and commercial use. Supported by professional dealers nationwide. New Dealers are welcome to join the Enduro Powered by Yamaha family.

Location: Westbury Pedestrian Bridge and Park Size: 6000 m2 Project Start Date - Implementation: 23/08/2015 Completed: 17/01/2017 Cost: Approximately 5.6 million 25 million with the bridge



CORRIDORS OF FREEDOM Developed as part of Johannesburg City’s long-term strategy and commitment to providing resilient, liveable and sustainable urban environments for its civilians, IYER was appointed to this project to transform a space that the community had indicated needed attention.

The City of Johannesburg’s Corridors of Freedom (COF) initiative aims to create a people-centred city, where communities and their economic well-being are placed at the core of planning and delivery processes. While the COF as a transport initiative is well known, a lesser known driving principle is the clustering of social facilities within the Corridors to optimise space, access and quality of life. This ‘social clustering’ necessitates an integration of the COF city scale with local scale specificities and the unification of transport, pedestrian and open space systems and neighbourhoods, which have historically been largely fragmented. The ‘Westbury Pedestrian Bridge and Park’ is one such integrative ‘social cluster’ flagship COF

project, as it seamlessly merges built, natural and human environments into an integrated landscape.

role from the onset of the project, ensuring the integration of environmental and spatial considerations.

Background The project is located at the boundary between two impoverished communities, Westbury and Coronationville. The brief came from the Westbury community itself, who during stakeholder consultation with the City of Joburg, requested a pedestrian bridge for people to move safely across Fuel Road. The existing on-grade crossing was extremely dangerous, particularly for school children. Additionally, the project also provides safe access to and from the Rea Vaya station beneath the new bridge.

Issues to Consider & Solutions to these Problems:

The Role of the Landscape Architect: The project context required a design that integrated the bridge and the park into a unified precinct. The inter disciplinary nature of the IYER practice allowed for a seamless combination of Urban Design, Architecture and Landscape Architecture into a single design gesture. The landscape architect played a key

Excessive Stormwater Runoff: A planted stormwater retention pond was proposed and constructed at one corner of the park. To prevent this from becoming too big, a large bio-swale was also constructed to help with the stormwater retention and ground water recharge. The bio-swale walls also act as seating. Universal Access Requirements to Bridge: Due to the bridge connecting to the park, access from the park had to be such that one can it was universally accessible. The ramp for this was designed to be incorporated into the design and functions of the park. The ramp formed an amphitheatre that the community can use during events.

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



Safety of Users: The previous park was fenced off and had three access points with two being rather small. This lead to criminals trapping users and with the lack of lighting made it very unsafe. The solution was to open the park as much as possible with one of the fences being removed and entrances being widened where kept. To prevent users from running into the BRT lane the other fence line was moved back to prevent this occurrence and enlarged the park space. New lighting was also incorporated throughout the entire park. Trees: Due to the high volumes of water that currently flow through the space and the anticipated volumes, bio-swales and a rain water garden were incorporated into the design. The planting within the bio-swale had to be chosen so as to tolerate the large volumes of water. With the help of an Arborist to help identify and choose the correct tree species for this specific environment, we were able to make the correct decisions. The amount of leaf litter and growth rate also played an important role in the choice of tree. The trees also needed to have strong shallow roots as there is under-lying bedrock throughout the entire park. Planting: A horticulturist had to assist in the selection and specifying of a new planting palette that would survive in such harsh conditions and to come up with an alternative bio-swale system that would not flood quickly. Being a public park meant that one element of importance was the maintenance and replacement of the plants chosen. These plants need to be easy to maintain and be very water wise as no automated irrigation system was to be installed


Paving: The paving was chosen both to serve a functional and aesthetic role. The paver had to be smooth enough to allow water to run quickly but not become slippery. The two main pavers the Bosun linneo and urban paver were chosen for this function. They also provide a clean level surface with no bevels to allow a seamless surface, making wheelchair and pram access more comfortable. Within the parking areas permeable pavers were used to allow as much runoff to be recharged back into the ground before flowing into the stormwater system.


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



Paving Bosun Linneo & Urban Pavers 011 310 1176 Gyms Green Outdoor Gyms 010 593 7687 Rubber Flooring Fibre Play And Sport 082 806 5871 Lighting Beka- Schreder 011 238 0000 Trees Sun Trees 011 462 1872 Planting Windy Willows 079 492 2549

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



ABOUT IYER IYER is a collective of visionary planners, urban designers and architects. The practice, operating from two major centers in South Africa, is involved in a wide range of urban development projects at a range of scales, both locally, nationally and internationally. A core aspect of the practice is the interdisciplinary design approach that underpins the conceptualisation and execution of every project. Individuals within the practice draw from a wide range of design disciplines enabling the practice to offer an interdisciplinary design service – planning, urban design, architecture and landscape design – transcending scale and boundary. Central to the approach of the practice is a belief in design as an agent or positive change, and as a key influence in enhancing the livability of cities and regions.


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018


We focus on Indigenous Plants in this edition.

FELICIA FILIFOLIA This lovely plant of the Asteraceae family, is an ideal plant for coastal as well as inland gardens and is extremely drought tolerant, with very little water required once established. When in flower from October to December you are rewarded with the most beautiful purple, mauve and sometimes white flowers with a splash of yellow in the centre. These rewarding plants grow relatively quickly and once established in your garden will self-sow, they can also be propagated from cuttings or root- division, in the Autumn months. Felicia filifolia’s generally grow to a height of approximately 1.5m. They naturally occur in both winter and summer rainfall areas. They can be planted in both full sun and semi-shade, however they may not flower as prolifically when planted in semi shade areas, as they do prefer to be in full sun all day. They can be planted in groups to form a border, or in a rockery for a lovely splash of colour. They are easily cared for, and don’t require pruning as such but should be cut back once they have flowered to encourage new growth. They are frost hardy, and should they be damaged by frost, they won’t die and will regrow in the spring, with only a slight delay in flowering.

Just Trees


TARCHONANTHUS CAMPHORATUS CAMPHOR BUSH This interesting small tree with its attractive grey foliage is particularly suited to tough conditions suitable for the coast and dry inland areas. They are extremely drought tolerant. It grows up to 9m high and can be used for screening or a low wind break. Its grey green foliage is similar to Olive trees and it gets creamy-white flowers that then get covered in cotton-wool like hairs towards the end of March. Tarchonanthus have also been used as street trees in areas where drought tolerant hardy trees are needed. The camphor bush is used for medicinal purposes. Problems such as blocked sinuses and headache can be healed by inhaling the smoke from the burning green leaves. Drinking boiled mixture of leaves and water can help to treat coughing, toothache, abdominal pain and bronchitis. Leaves can also be used for massaging body stiffness and as a perfume. The cotton wool-like seedheads were used to stuff cushions.

FREYLINIA TROPICA This low maintenance, highly versatile shrub ticks all the boxes. It is frost hardy and even survives a black frost. Water wise, evergreen, fast growing and accommodating as it does well in the full sun or semi shade. They are perfect for planting in the sun under newly planted trees that will grow up and provide semi shade when they are fully grown. A wonderful choice for a wildlife friendly garden as they attract birds, insects and butterflies like the Brown Veined White and Eyed Pansy. It flowers all year and is perfect for pots and a townhouse garden as it doesn't get too big but does well as a screen to hide the neighbours. They respond well to pruning and form a neat formal hedge which naturally grows to about 1.5 meters. You can happily cut it much shorter if you’d like a short hedge to edge your garden bed or demarcate an area. It grows naturally in high altitude, misty forest margins and river banks of the Waterberg and Limpopo mountains where it is a pioneer specie. Although it is Red Listed as rare it is not threatened.

Grow WIld


New Plant

At the Nursery our favourite indigenous medicinal herb is Artemisia afra. This versatile plant is a shrub in the daisy family and named after the Greek goddess of hunting, Artemis. Artemisia is a large genus containing about 400 species with its centre of diversity in the northern hemisphere. Other notable species in the genus include Artemisia absinthium, which is used in the alcoholic drink Absinthe, and Artemisia dracunculus, commonly known as tarragon. This easy to grow shrub is widely used to treat coughs, colds and influenza, fever, loss of appetite, colic, headache, earache, malaria, intestinal worms and many other ailments. Artemisia afra is also a great companion plant (companion plants are plants that enhance each other's growth or protect each other from pests). Its strong smell acts as a natural insect and animal repellent, and it has been known to repel mosquitos, flies and worms and keep dogs out when planted as a border. It also aids soil health and makes an excellent mulch as it encourages proliferation of beneficial soil biota.


HARPEPHYLLUM CAFFRUM WILD PLUM Which trees should you be planting in this dry climate? TreeCo will be concentrating on the Harpephyllum caffrum. We really like the Wild plum due to the speed of growth and find them very hardy and wind resistant, a must for Cape Town and surrounds. Even though they do not have an aggressive root system, care should be taken as to where they are planted as they can grow into large specimens. They will create a lovely full and lush crown and their fruit will attract mousebirds, Cape parrots, barbets and a various fruit eating species. If there are children around, you won’t need to worry if they decide to eat the fruit, as these sour fruits are also used for jams and jellies. Get creative and find a nice recipe. Frost is not their friend, but if you are in a light frost area look after the tree for a few years while small. Alternatively, plant a bigger specimen. A clay soil type or rather non-draining soil is not the best area for them. They can easily be mistaken for the Ekebergia capensis aka Cape ash but we prefer the Wildplum for its faster growing qualities. If you want to spot the difference quickly, look at the lighter colour bark. Look to the Wild plum as a great option for these drying times.

ANASTRABE INTEGERRIMA PAMBATI TREE This beautiful and underrated plant grows naturally in Kwa-Zulu Natal and the Eastern Cape. The plant has beautiful dark green glossy leaves which are covered with yellow clusters of flowers during the summer period. The shrub is of a hedging habit and can reach a height of 3 - 4m with a width of 2 - 3m. It can be used as a screen to provide privacy and sound proofing or it can be used as a tree in a small garden. The plant prefers to be grown in loam soil that is well draining. It is well adapted to many environmental conditions as it is also drought hardy and well suited to plant in dry conditions. With the current drought conditions that we are faced with, the Anastrabe intergerrima presents itself well as a suitable replacement for traditional plants such as Viburnum sp. With its low water requirements and striking feature.


CALODENDRUM CAPENSIS CAPE CHESTNUT Indigenous plants are a national treasure which we are only beginning to appreciate, they can be used in any size garden that need to be low maintenance and water wise, in containers, in huge commercial developments and in parks to bring back a little bit of the original natural bush and plant life to areas that have been claimed in the name of development. Indigenous plants encourage bird life, insect life and build a new ecosystem that can so easily be lost when new development takes place.


A personal favourite of mine is Calodendrum capensis (Cape chestnut) a showy, slow growing, semi deciduous tree which is moderately hardy. Calodendrum capensis is a medium to large tree with a rounded crown, glossy dark green leaves and bears a profusion of pink flowers in summer, although slow growing it can be used as an outstanding specimen tree in parks, large gardens, estate developments and commercial landscapes bringing beautiful colour to any landscape architects design. In my opinion planting a tree in autumn allows the tree to settle before spring arrives giving it a head start on trees planted in spring, thus planting between March and May would be wise.

METALASIA MURICATA BLOMBOS OR FLOWER BUSH Metalasia muricata is one of South Africa’s most spectacular indigenous shrubs. It is found country wide and is commonly known as ‘Blombos’ or ‘Flower Bush’. Blombos can be described as an evergreen shrub that has erect branching stems which are covered in green short narrow heath like leaves. These are sharply pointed, twisted and often flexed downwards. When in blossom, tufted flowers form a magnificent display as they proudly stand at the tip of each stem. The shrub generally grows to 2 metres in height depending on the species but is easily trimmed if necessary.

Elands Nursery

Metalasia enjoy a sandy soil and they make excellent specimens for coastal dune plantings or windswept gardens. They grow in the full sun, can handle poor conditioned soils and are drought and frost resistant too. Metalasia has a long flowering period from late winter through to spring, usually from the months of June to October. Their honey scented flower heads, shaped like a disk, are an absolute magnet to hungry bees after a long winter. Groups or hedges of Metalasia used in gardenscapes create a delicious honey scented air in the early morning and late afternoon when they are in flower.

LEUCADENDRONS CONE BUSHES Leucadendrons are extremely versatile and hardy plants and a great asset to any garden or landscape job. Use them as a focal point in the garden, plant them in a container or utilise them as a beautiful hedge for driveways. Varieties suitable for: Focal point; Burgundy Sunset or Silver Tree. Container gardening: African Gold, Amy, Harvest, Red Devil® or Yellow Devil®. Hedges: Safari Sunset or Cream Delight. Plant in a sunny spot and where soil is acidic and well-draining. There should not be more than 30% clay content in top and sub soil. Make sure you minimise root disturbance and do not add compost, bone meal or fertilizer, instead settling for pine bark. Nutrition: Proteaceae species grow naturally in very nutrient poor soils, there is very little need for any additional fertilizer application. You can feed during the growing season from August to April. Use the lowest rate recommended on packaging.


Cladding | Tiles | Mosaic 060 974 6484 | |

Designed by Lucy Schnell and managed by Cape Contours, this garden is located at the foot of Table Mountain, Cape Town. Featured here, a section of an extensive garden with a variety of spaces.

"This garden’s story became one of respecting what came before, whilst injecting new shape and form into the old degraded garden."


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

Every garden has a story. In re-engineering this north facing garden at the foot of Table Mountain this garden’s story became one of respecting what came before, whilst injecting new shape and form into the old degraded garden. The blockhouse store-room was sited, levels were refined, lawns and beds were reshaped whilst the circulation around the garden was re-imagined. Some of the existing plants were left in place, such as the Quercus suber, which is clipped into a large topiary so as not to obscure the mountain view, and dwarf Bottlebrush in deference to the owner’s Aussie roots, and a large contingent of background perimeter shrubs and trees. Others were rescued, bagged and transferred back into the garden once it had been restructured, such

as existing Echium’s and daylilies, as well as an established Thuja which was carefully moved from the embankment into a different spot prior to redevelopment. The designer has gently guided this landscape through an extended maintenance period which includes oversight of seasonal trimming and allowing plants to self-seed where they are happy to do so. White Anemone japonica and Shasta daisies do this joyfully, as have the ferns popping through the stone clad walls. Dietes grandiflora are a bit more persistent and need a firmer contol. Moving, removing or replacing some of the perennials occurs only when they have reached an obvious sell-by-date. In this way, the garden has developed a level of ‘selfperpetuation’ and an exuberant character.

Plant Palette Trees • • •

Quercus suber (existing) Acacia xanthophloaea Background perimeter trees and shrubs were existing

Significant shrubs • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Searsia crenata – clipped hedge Callistemon citrinus “Little John” Echium fastuosum Coleonema pulchrum Leucodendron ‘Purple Haze’ Salvia Africana-lutea Salvia leucantha ‘Midnight’ Plumbago auriculata Aloe arborescens Buddleja salvifolia Buddleja davidii Melianthus major Santolina chamaecyparissus Brunia albiflora

Perennials • • • • • • • •

Anemone japonica Dietes grandiflora Hemerocallis sp. Echium fastuosum Kniphofia uvaria Leucanthemum maximum Tulbaghia violacea Felicia bergiana

Grasses & Reeds • •

Elegia capensis Miscanthus sinensis

Roof Garden

Bougainvillea Climber

• •

Phormium ‘Yellow Wave’ Phormium purpurea nana

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018






Divisional Manager @ Life Landscapes

Owner @ Letitia Bruwer Landscapes

What is your favourite landscaped area in South Africa?

What is your favourite landscaped area in South Africa?

Steyn City, because of the size, creativity and precision that Patrick Watson used into creating the gardens.

For me Menlyn Maine. It is quite artsy.

How is Sustainability embedded into your business practices?

Protect our environment, soil, water, animals & insects and create an awareness amongst our clients to want to do so to. Go mainly indigenous & recycle.

We are currently designing and maintaining gardens that will sustain itself. By using specific plants and by putting back the organisms we are assuring the notion that our gardens will live forever. What is one item you cannot live a day without? My watch, Better three hours too soon for a meeting, than one minute too late. Who/What is your biggest professional influence and why?

How is Sustainability embedded into your business practices?

What is one item you cannot live a day without? Water, hat & sunscreen Who/What is your biggest professional influence and why? My family. My Mother, Father & my Husband. They are always prepared to help and give advice

Dave Kirkby, I was privileged to be mentored by him and he is the one that taught me “you do not manage sites, you manage people”.

What is the moto that you live by?

What is the moto that you live by? I am not a product of my circumstances, I am a product of my decisions

One piece of advice for the landscaping industry? Believe in yourself and in one another

One piece of advice for the landscaping industry? Be soft on people, but hard on standards as gardening is a passion and not a JOB

If you really want something or want to do something you will do it no matter what.

Top Plant? I do not have a favourite plant – all plants are beautiful to me.

Top Plant? Kiepersol (Cabbage Tree) - Cussonia paniculata

Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018



SARAH VERMAAK Owner @ Acton Gardens

DEON VAN EEDEN Managing Director @ Vula Environmental Services (Pty) Ltd

What is your favourite landscaped area in South Africa?

What is your favourite landscaped area in South Africa?

Tough one – there are many, but I do love Babylonstoren in the Western Cape.

Kirstenbosch Botanical gardens.

How is Sustainability embedded into your business practices? We always tackle a project with ‘what can we save’ in mind. We aim to meet the present needs of our clients while not compromising, and also keeping in mind, the future needs of the project/site. We take into consideration the natural resources available and how to use them sparingly and to their greatest potential. Harvesting water and reusing it, using endemic/ indigenous species to conserve water usage and feed the natural diversity of the environment. Energy efficient in design and future anticipated maintenance of a project is just as vital. What is one item you cannot live a day without? Coffee!! And my notebook... Who/What is your biggest professional influence and why? As cliché as it may sound – nature, REAL nature. How we can recreate it within our urban spaces and those who have pioneered to do as such. Re-creating natural scapes is my ultimate goal as a landscaper. What is the moto that you live by? Grow! One piece of advice for the landscaping industry? Ask a lot of questions – understanding your clients’ ‘why’ and not just their ‘what’. And be honest with them – what will work and not work, and when you need to call in advice.

How is Sustainability embedded into your business practices? As a Restoration Ecologist, most of our work is environmental restoration or rehabilitation, we recreate functional eco systems. We only use site specific, local indigenous plants, only seed at the appropriate time and plant at the start of the rainy season, 80% of our landscapes are not ever irrigated. What is one item you cannot live a day without? My iPhone, it has my GPS Logger & Camera and iNaturalist app, indispensable and compact all in one tool. Who/What is your biggest professional influence and why? My Mentors.... Claude Keytel, Beyers Theron and Prof Roy Lubke – they taught me to look, to enquire and to see, not only things but processes and to employ understanding of observed fundamentals in design. What is the moto that you live by? .If you are not part of the solution, you may be the problem One piece of advice for the landscaping industry? In the Western & Northern Cape, incorporate eco system functionality in your designs, it will evolve and survive when mass planting will wither and die in the drought. Top Plant? Gethyllis afra - Koekemakranka.

Top Plant? Aristada junciformis – blowing in the wind


Pro Landscaper Africa | April 2018

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Pro Landscaper Africa April 2018  
Pro Landscaper Africa April 2018