Different views leads to curvy garden path
Having differing design opinions can create difficulties within groups but not for three Unitec New Zealand students
entering the upcoming Auckland Flower Show.
Chris Davis, Jordan Draffin and Mel Gaskin’s “Piko Raranga – Weaving Curves” garden entry, is a combination of the
three’s varying design style, which has helped more than it has hindered them.
“Our original idea was very symmetrical but we all had different opinions of what it should look like so we went away
and came back with our new ideas,” says Jordan.
“When we came back, we found we had very similar ideas which is how we agreed on this concept.”
He says the weaving curves idea came from an image they spotted in a magazine, which made it easier for them to focus on
As the name suggests, their garden is made up multiple curves with several woven features including a woven snake chair,
garden beds and other furniture pieces.
There is also a cocoon chair at the back of the courtyard garden.
“We’ve designed the garden for an inner city professional couple who don’t have a lot of space but are still able to
retreat into their garden as well as entertain friends.”
Team member Chris says the main feature of their garden design is the curved flowerbeds that overlap each other, much
like a weave, while a Nikau light feature helps further enhance the curves.
“It’s been a really interesting process putting all this together. If anything, what we’ve gone through from coming up
with the design to sourcing the materials for our garden, has given us a look into the future of what we could be doing
when we finish our course,” says Chris.
The trio are first year students of Unitec’s Diploma in Landscape Design programme.
Third team member, Mel Gaskin, says it was also important they got the right plants for the garden.
“Because our theme is based around weaving and curves, we wanted to use phormiums (flax) which are traditionally used in
weaving but we also needed to consider the colour, shape and texture of the plants to form a lush oasis for our targeted
With the Auckland Flower Show only a couple of weeks away, the three are currently in the process of constructing their
They say the toughest part so far has been the tight budget and time frame but have been fortunate to secure building
materials from Urban Living Builders and outdoor furniture from Coastal Design.
Lecturer, Penny Cliffin, has been overseeing the progress of the trio’s garden and says their garden could create quite
an interest at the show.
“I haven’t seen this theme before in a flower show garden before and I think it will work well to attract public
The Auckland Flower Show will be held at Alexandra Park between November 20 and 23.