Students shine at Lifestyle Garden Design Show

Students at Lifestyle Garden Design Show

Landscape design students have built nine spectacular mini gardens – on show till May 2018 – in Randburg

Design³ (design to the power of 3) is the theme of the 21st Lifestyle Garden Design Show at the Lifestyle Home Garden in Randburg, Gauteng. Nine creative, contemporary and vibrant gardens were launched at this year’s show on 10 February, 2018. The show runs until the end of May 2018.

The show is part of the practical component of the landscape design course completed by students at Lifestyle College. “This year’s gardens are built around a theme of garden design to the power of three”, explained Lifestyle College’s, Mike Rickhoff to Dez Whitehead, Gauteng Operations Director of the South African Landscapers’ Institute (SALI).

“In all of the gardens, awareness is created around the volume of the space, taking the floor, walls and ceiling of the space into account to bring the focus of attention to the volume of the garden – hence the play on words – to the power of three”, says Rickhoff.

“The students spend three weeks working extremely hard to meet the launch day deadline”, says Whitehead. “There was great energy on site when we visited the build-up. SALI is very proud of the students’ creativity and enthusiasm”, he says. “The show provides a superb opportunity for landscape design students to put theory into practice, whilst showcasing the latest in plants, products and innovative design trends”.

The nine gardens on show this year all put a special emphasis on levels, walls, backdrop and ceilings in gardens. Paths meandering through this years’ gardens link the features, giving visitors a feeling of embrace and enclosure.

As the show organiser and senior design lecturer at Lifestyle College, Mike Rickhoff says, “People are looking for individuality in their gardens. We also looked at ways where one could take products that are freely available, and use them to create something unique within their own garden spaces.”

Colour is a major trend in the 2018 gardens. “People want colour, not only from plants but also hard landscaping materials,” says Rickhoff. “The design provides a journey through the gardens and a linkage of the various garden rooms, each space may be different but it should flow seamlessly into the next setting.”

What type of gardens are showcased this year? This is a synopsis of the nine gardens.

A garden of utilitarian splendour. A place where robust practicality meets designer styling. Look out for a water storage tank which becomes a water feature and innovative paving design. Food crops abound in masses on all levels in a cubic potage.

Tropical palms, a geometric pattern, levels and quirky features – like an overhead helix rope feature reminiscent of an overhead jungle rope bridge – festooned with air plants. An outdoor shower and spiritual sunken courtyard reflects originality, creativity and distinctiveness.

A beautiful pergola in a sunken circular patio floats atop bands of brilliant colour and jagged planters. Water gardens nestle comfortably amid the calming white flower carpet.

Angular planting support a balcony that resonates with sophisticated urban chic. Clipped topiary superballs float among the massed ornamental grasses against a backdrop of rugged grey terrace blocks. A trendy dandelion-inspired steel sculpture creates a focal point amid the swaying grasses. Look out for bold water columns, Japanese maples in contemporary granite planters, wedge planters, geometric inlays of faux lawn and gleaming black gravel.

A fairy tale labyrinth of flamboyantly coloured pavers is central to this children’s garden. The spiral has a journey of fun and purpose – alphabet going in, numbers coming out. Scented plants are embroidered throughout the maze.

Gumpoles become giant fiddlesticks, monkey bars, foot rests and balancing beams in a range of vibrant colours. A sinewy green snake made from plastic planting containers weaves in and out of the ground. A set of oversized dice crafted from simple wooden planters and a suspended set of rungs surround the friendly, playful serpent. Look out for the garden swing, wigwams, mushrooms and giant coloured pencils.

The focal point of this garden is a beautiful old rusty hand pump that now has pride of place as a continuous water feature pouring into a rusty planter set in the ground. A backdrop of trellises, carefully decorated planters and a swathe of succulent plants – barrel cacti and terracotta spheres set in the ground.

A distinctive water feature crafted from a rusted planter and some elevated brass taps serves as a creative focal point. Aloe species peek through the grasses and eventually become a sea of majestic tree aloes. Look out for the eccentric trellis backdrop, sweeping path, embedded fire pit and windmill shapes reminiscent of the Karoo.

A classic rose garden and small potager, Roses follow a planting journey from pinks to white to yellow. A traditional parterre features bold black-cherry reds set in a classical formal sunken parterre on the other.

Clipped low hedges punctuated with wispy trees, topiaries, European statuary, water feature and urns bring a classical romantic appeal. Vertically implanted gumpoles festooned with hanging baskets are planted up with edible plants add height and added volume to this small courtyard. Picket fencing, gates, lavender surround and French-finished planters add a country feel to this side of the patio.

This ecological narrow bog garden is interspersed with fever trees, sedges, reed grasses, arums and red hot pokers. A rock water cascade bat box, bird features and other wildlife garden features completes the ecological picture.

The patio is a comfortable country living space with rustic designer paving, comfortable furniture and a portable braai near to hand. Meadow takes over from woodland and slowly assumes a grassland look that links to the grassland garden beyond.


Event: 21st Lifestyle Garden Design Show
Date: Launched 10 February 2018. Show runs to the end of May, 2018.
Venue: Lifestyle Home Garden, cnr Beyers Naude Dr & Ysterhout Ave, Randpark Ridge, Randburg, Gauteng.
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