All of the plantings in the 2012 Gardens were inspired by natural scenes of wonder that are typically reserved for plant explorers in remote parts of the world. The mountain grasslands of
the Drakensberg range in South Africa provided the initial source of inspiration for these plantings within the Olympic Southern Hemisphere Gardens.
A base layer of tussock grasses and low ground layer perennials such as Themda triandra, Berkheya purpurea and Haphlocarpha scaposa create repeating arrangements of varied texture and form.
Summer flowering perennials with upright
'see-through' stems, such as Kniphofia triangularis, Gladiolus papilio ‘Ruby’ and Dierama pulcherrimum emerging through this low matrix. Tall structural blocks of grasses and restios create a backdrop to this intense summer flowering tapestry. I designed the planting of the Southern Hemisphere gardens in collaboration with Professor James Hitchmough of Sheffield University.