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News - Equilibrium wins Gold & most sustainable landscape at Garden Show

Equilibrium wins Gold & most sustainable landscape at Garden Show
News imageThe EQUILIBRIUM installation – a collaboration between the Victorian Government, State water authorities and sustainable landscape designer, Phillip Johnson Landscapes, has won Gold in the Show Garden category and the Ford Sustainability Award at the Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show – recognised for its visionary features that inspire local communities to rethink the way they design and sustain their gardens through “community water management”.

EQUILIBRIUM contrasts two gardens of equal size. One being a typical, everyday Australian backyard that is covered in concrete, uses high water use plants, and has water sources leading to stormwater drains.

The other is a sustainable landscape where the design centres on water collection and conservation – and going one step further, looks at interlinking neighbouring backyards to create “water and habitat corridors” meaning none of the gardens need to be reliant on mains – and precious drinking – water.

Another idea also promoted by this educational display is a community produce and raingarden, which not only acts to increase neighbourhood self sufficiency, but also to cleanse stormwater before it flows into public water ways meaning the ecology of the Yarra River and Port Phillip Bay is improved.

The sustainable garden demonstrates how storm water and run off can be harvested into the billabong reservoir and streams in the single backyard; as well as illustrating the networking possibilities for local communities by extending the water capture and redirection right down to the permanent lake at the Royal Exhibition Gardens. Capturing and using this water falling onto a site assists in improving the ecology of our urban waterways, as the garden and water corridor filters pollutants.
Phillip Johnson, Creative Director, Phillip Johnson Landscapes is both surprised and ecstatic about winning Ford Sustainability Award, two years in a row.

“We collaborated with the State Government, the Victorian water industry and our friends at savewater®! to produce an educational display this year – the landscape wasn’t even meant to be entered into the Awards!” Phillip commented.

“So you can imagine our surprise yesterday when we were advised to enter based on the standard of what we have developed. This is the second year running we have won the Most Sustainable Award, and it’s our second gold medal.
“Our aim is to continue to educate and inspire the public to rethink the way they design their backyards to ensure our sustainable future.”

Michael Smit, National Programs Manager at the savewater®! Alliance said “We’re thrilled to be part of creating a vision for community water management with the Victorian water industry, and the Awards validate the hard work everyone has put into this wonderful installation.”

Phillip Johnson will be speaking at the EQUILIBRIUM site every 30 minutes during MIFGS. In addition, Trevor Cochrane – Garden Gurus, will present on the stand each day at 11am.