Integrating environmentally: sensitive process and ecology with aesthetic resolve11th Feb 2019
The word “problem” is defined in the dictionary as a difficulty that has to be resolved or dealt with.
In estate landscaping, there are inescapable problems and then there are those that could have been managed from the outset.
Issues such as climate, water quantity and quality, soil conditions and budgetary constraints are typically the ever-present difficulties most prevalent when managing estate landscapes. Additional issues such as those relating to plant health, fertility and pests most often flow from the significant constraints noted above.
In an ideal situation, a site’s specific constraints together with its desired outcomes should be thoroughly investigated and dealt with at the landscape design stage. Well-designed areas will result in landscapes where the maintenance team can achieve far more consistent quality at a lower cost, whilst utilising fewer resources (especially water).
Golf Data, as a full-service landscape design, construction and maintenance service provider, has over the last three decades maintained well-designed spaces as well as poorly designed spaces; they’ve maintained both poorly and properly specified/built spaces, and they’ve seen the changing trends in the industry. Undoubtedly, areas that are well thought out and have appropriate capital infrastructure (irrigation, shaping and soil preparation) outlive and outperform those areas that do not.
Overall, the changing trends in the industry have been positive. Clients are more aware and willing to put effort and resources into thorough planning, and an acceptance of endemic flora seems to be growing. Together these seemingly insignificant shifts immeasurably change the sustainability of landscaped areas for the better.
Technological advances at their disposal through each stage have also been a boon to the industry: from advanced computer modelling for landscape and irrigation design through to more efficient irrigation systems dispersing accurate volumes of water with vastly more control and risk mitigation, not to forget the team responsible.
Advances in so-called soil amendments are perhaps less sexy but just as impressive, with the potential to advance the sustainability cause for landscaped areas. Rehabilitating bad soils and adding advanced water retention capability can considerably reduce the amount of irrigation water required. This not only saves on water but also on pump sets and repairs, as well as maintenance to the irrigation system. While knowledge and discipline are not as much fun to write about as GPS mapping soil, monitoring probes and irrigation systems linked to weather stations, they still remain the most important facets of managing the sustainability of green areas. Ultimately there is no silver bullet, but employing the services of a professional company from the outset will result in savings for both the environment and an estate’s long-term finances.
Golf Data is an industry landscaping expert, successfully involved with all aspects of the landscaping architectural project, with a focus on holistic design. The multidisciplinary team integrates environmentally sensitive processes and ecology with aesthetic resolve. Golf Data engages with people and the environment through research and observation, with a key understanding of history, culture and the natural environment. This enables them to successfully translate needs into detailed design, technical resolve and environments that invoke excitement.
Golf Data’s experience has afforded them the opportunity to work on both intimate and large-scale projects, including Steyn City, Thesen Islands, Oubaai, St Francis Links, and Pearl Valley estates, to mention but a few.