Robert Boyle Landscapes’ Ivanhoe project was the big winner at this year’s Victorian Landscape Awards winning the prestigious Landscape of the Year plus the Landscape Design over 150m2 Award, Plants in the Landscape Award and Residential Landscape Construction over $300,000.
Judges felt that this project, set on a large riverfront property in Ivanhoe exemplified every outstanding quality of a professional landscape and one that the industry can be proud of as the industry’s top award winner.
For all the winners and more details on this project go to www.landscapingvictoria.com.au
‘Moira’s Garden’ also referred to as ‘The Garden of Hope’ or ‘The Amal Garden’ (Amal meaning Hope in Arabic) started life as a thought provoking idea from Moira Kelly AO, International humanitarian during a medical rescue mission to Gaza in February 2004.
Moira had the opportunity to visit several families in the refugee camps, in their destroyed homes. She witnessed first hand the images never revealed to the rest of the world and this affected her tremendously. She had lived through the atrocities of the Bosnian War and had hugely contributed to the plight of the children and their parents there and understood better than most the daily struggles that they faced.
In the midst of this bleak picture, the children were still being children. They could be seen on the war torn streets playing with the rubble left over from bombed buildings, with make shift toys constructed from broken pieces of metal and other rubbish that they gathered to play with either on the street or on the beach. No matter what situation a child finds itself, a child is still a child and play is a vital part of their existence.
Her first hand experience of Gaza and the children had moved her to take action. She boldly expressed to the Director of the UHWC and political associates that she intended to create a place where the children of Gaza and their families could come and play in a happy, serene, clean environment that would provide them with a break from their daily troubles. She had observed that there was nowhere for the children to go.
In July 2007, Moira received a visit from an Ittihad representative who was bringing a sick child for treatment. He also brought with him a letter entitled ‘Moira’s garden’ and that after the 2005 Israeli evacuation of Gaza strip, most of the removed settlement land had become available. His first words were ‘We have your land’. To her amazement, she was advised that 12,000 sqm of land had been put aside for a creation of master plan of which 5000 sqm was set aside for a ‘Children’s Garden’ for Moira and the Australian people to create and build.
And so Moira’s Garden began.
We expect the project to take approximately 3-4 years to complete on the ground. An initial plan is being prepared by Ian Potter’s Children’s Garden’s designer Andrew Laidlaw and we anticipate a cost of around $5 million that we will start fund raising for shortly… stay tuned.
I attended a stakeholders meeting of the 4 water retail authorities; South East Water, Yarra Valley Water, City West Water and Melbourne Water on Tuesday this week to hear more about a proposed draft Water and Demand Strategy that is being considered by the Victorian Government that will plan Melbourne’s water needs for the next 50 years. It is fantastic that such an initiative is taking place to secure our water needs well into the future. The draft strategy also acknowledges that water use is linked to liveability and that better water management strategies will ensure that gardens, parks and sporting grounds can be maintained under any future proposed water restrictions.
First steps of bringing Moira’s garden to fruition is the establishment of a logo, website, facebook page and a trust fund. Beatrice Imbert, author and all round amazing energizer has joined the working group bringing with her a wealth of knowledge an unquantifiable list of contacts and a can do attitude that will keep things moving.
Beatrice Imbert, Fran holding Trishna, Moira and Julie Edmonds
The beginnings of a beautiful garden for the people of Gaza, a long term dream of Moira Kelly’s.
Moira Kelly known for her amazing humanitarian works has long held a dream of building a garden for the children of Gaza. This is a longterm project and we have only just begun on bringing this dream to a reality. We have a plot of land! No small feat in a small area of 1.5 million people. This is a garden of hope and will be a gift of the Australian people. Landscaping Victoria with the Royal Botanic Gardens and Andrew Laidlaw are working with Moira to bring this garden to reality.
Member training yesterday on the basics of the Building Regulations and how they apply to landscape design and construction. This is something that everyone working in the industry should know and the public should be aware of – simple question “do I need a building permit?” If the answer is yes then you need to factor in time and some extra money for necessary reports such as an engineers report or a soil report. Run the risk of building a landscape without a permit and you could find it having to be demolished at your expense. And don’t believe the neighbours won’t dob you in! Particularly relevant when constructing decks, fences, pergolas and installing water tanks. Ask your landscaper – do I need a permit? are you licensed? Key questions to achieve a beautiful result!
Phil revealed his Chelsea design to Chisholm TAFE students last week and in typical Phil style nothing is done by halves! Imagine a billabong in the NT crossed with a Phil Johnson flourish and you’re half way there. This will be Wes’s eighth foray at the famous garden show and to date, likely to be the biggest. Follow Phil’s journey to Chelsea at http://phillipjohnsonlandscapes.blogspot.com.au/