IN THE TRANQUIL CENTRE OF THE WATER’S EDGE- BEST IN SHOW GARDEN BLOOM 2011

by Ciaran Burke
Copyright Ciaran Burke 2011

Oliver & Liat Schurmann - At The Waters Edge

Our second day at Bloom. We started by doing what should have been doing at the end of the day. Imagine sitting in a sunken garden under blue skies surrounded by greenery and tranquility, beauty and liquidity. Hanna paddled in cool water, well at least the soles of her feet caused ripples in the shallow flow that ran over the stone walk way to the sunken island in a tranquil water-scape.

Copyright Ciaran Burke 2011

Oliver & Liat Schurmann - At The Waters Edge

Few garden designers manage to capture atmosphere and mood in show gardens, at least not in the same way as Oliver and Liat Shurmann of Mount Venus Nurseries do it. Their entry into this year’s Bloom’s show gardens is to my mind the obvious choice of best in show, gladly, the show judges agreed. Plane trees create seclusion from the outside, their open canopies playing with reflections on the water. Borders of green and exotic foliage are dressed with euphorbia flowers, adding a sulphurous luminosity to the mellow planting. The sylvanian atmosphere embraces the water filled garden, where in the centre a sunken island invites you to cross a slightly submerged stone path. Circled around a central round channel, four stylish and modern seats demand that you rest and soak in the atmosphere. A trickle of water flows beneath your feet, creating a whirlpool pattern on the concrete surface. The mirror-like water  surrounding the low seating area is an an ever changing canvass of reflection and light. Tree silhouttes, greens and reds of foliage play with the surface of the pool.

Copyright Ciaran Burke 2011

Oliver & Liat Schurmann - At The Waters Edge

As a backdrop, a pillared wall frames tall windows that display sculpture, art work created by Liat. Somehow this garden manages to both soothe the mind, stimulate the senses and feed the soul. It was with reluctance that we dragged ourselves away from the sunken retreat, there was a long busy day ahead.

Copyright Ciaran Burke 2011

Oliver & Liat Schurmann - At The Waters Edge

There are many other great gardens at Bloom 2011, small, medium and large as well as engaging spaces. Tomorrow I will return to the show gardens with views of other Gold medal winners and personal favourites.

Copyright Ciaran Burke 2011

Oliver & Liat Schurmann- At The Waters Edge

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