By James Wall with reference to a Jim Fogarty written article in The Age on Saturday October 22nd.
Well, the kiwis may have won the rugby world cup, but while all that was happening, there was a much more exciting World Cup of Gardening event going on in Japan. Who said gardening wasn’t a sport ? The competition was first held last year in Japan to commemorate 65 years since the dropping of the atomic bomb on Nagasaki. The Brits won that one with a garden designed by 2010 Chelsea Flower Show Best in Show winner Andy Sturgeon.
The challenge with this show is that each designer has to work with a 100sq metre site and the same budget. Each designer is appointed a Japanese building contractor. So you can see that money alone can’t buy a victory in this event. You have 10 days to build the project, and all plants must be sourced during this time. Not like the exhaustive months of preparation allowed for Chelsea.
Sixteen of the world’s best garden designers, representing 12 countries were there this year, including Sarah Eberle, winner of nine gold medals and a best in show at Chelsea. Every conversation with the contractor had to be conducted through appointed translators and the theme this year was ‘peace and plants’, using horticulture as a way of unifying countries.
Jim Fogarty was invited as the Australian entrant and he designed a garden telling the story of bushfires and there impact on the community. Jim witnessed the ‘Black Saturday’ fires of February 7th 2009, which were only an hour north east of his home. His message was that out of devastation comes new life. Every plant used was native to Australia. It obviously resonated with the Japanese after their recent earthquake and tsunami, and it was awarded best in show. That’s right, this was a world cup that Australia won.
As stated, much of this info was the words of Jim in his article in The Age on Saturday. It was a very well told story, but Jim Fogarty was much too humble with regard to his achievement and we congratulate him on his brilliance which has once again shone through. This shows the world that Australia is up there with the best when it comes to gardening and our industry should be proud that we can create such beauty to enrich ones’ lives.
More pics can be seen at Jim Fogarty Design