Site Visits to Judge Landscape Projects

Having had a hiatus from site visits over the past two years with COVID-19 regulations, we were able to judge the impact regarding projects reserved for judging, during 2022.

Hilton Quarry
Hilton Quarry

Judging season travels:

As a regional judge myself in the projects being presented, motivating and turning around landscapes was evident as a result of visitation and auditing of that particular site, thus involved in an in-depth understanding of what needed to be done.  Staff training together with intense management direction, this has brought changes in the dynamics of that particular landscape and when it improves in quality and it will be of a higher standard.  Many of the landscapes that I have judged and overseen for many years that I have been in the industry will fall into this category as there is always room for improvement and change to be taken place through effective onsite communication with the client and contractor.

Notable trends feature highlights:

  • Stand out Innovations, very notable – mainly featuring exemplary – waterwise concepts.
  • Also trends in hardscaping and material use of innovative ways to the hard landscaping design concepts, noted.
  • The biggest impact this SALI season?  Well-manicured interesting design layouts mainly using endemics.
Arum Cottage
Arum Cottage

Noteworthy concepts that were wow, is exciting for the industry? 

Waterwise is a full, ‘stand-alone’ category.  Describing the ‘corporate style landscaping’ vs. ‘the residential landscaping’ with the waterwise concept in mind, contractors have an understanding and knowledge to transform projects into stand-alone projects.  Therefore ‘waterwise’ becomes an asset to the features and accentuates all planting and hard landscaping layouts.

The opinions on the waterwise elements of projects in general are as follows:

Waterwise projects are generally well presented and well designed. What is good to see is how the commercial / industrial sectors are going the route of incorporating the waterwise concept into their landscapes.  Definitely the ultimate result will be left in the hands of the competent contractors who have a passion to incorporate these options into their design / theme of the landscape solely or extensions to the initial landscape design.  What we see in this sector will be a competent understanding of what to do in conversion of areas of landscape design. 

Frew Pics
Frew Pics

This is what makes the judging of these conversions or new concepts greatly impressive utilizing endemic planting choices for the correct biome.  Interest and dedication to create unusual commercial / industrial opportunities, sometimes with a non-understanding from clients very evident. 

Therefore, good relationships with your client will help in their enthusiasm to go this route.  Good representation of the ultimate process of introducing waterwise landscapes gives a completely new landscape opportunity. The contractor will be totally focused on the ultimate way forward knowing how important it is to introduce these changes which are constantly a reminder to our industry and are very encouraging from a judge’s point of view, so motivating and very unusual.

  • Budgets and good planning, communication / report feedback to clients very evident.
  • Projects with a strong endemic approach have to be well researched become very commendable.
  • Features in a project are well executed and use of hard landscaping materials are unusual.
  • Generally, site conceptual understanding for accentuating the landscape is important.

Hopefully this is of encouragement to the future of our profession.

HR Collins
HR Collins
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