AGSS Designers: Andrew Fisher Tomlin & Adrian Swain

These two designs from the Australian Garden Show Sydney are Andrew Fisher Tomlin’s THE UNEXPECTED GARDEN and Adrian Swain’s REFUGIUM.

Guest English designer Andrew Fisher Tomlin comes well credentialed having won several prestigious UK (3x Designer of The Year) and international awards.


Constructed by Bates Landscape Andrew designed this Bronze winning landscape with dementia sufferers in mind. The idea was to create a place where they wouldn’t be confused by varying levels or surfaces; where they could feel and smell some of the plants spilling over the edge of the pathway; and where there was no end – the walkway loops through the garden.

A mix of native and exotic perennials softened the granite pathway.

An Englishman in Australia… maybe this is why Andrew chose the vibrant blue hues in the pavilion and seating bay; cheery elements reflecting big blue skies (even though the Show weather was actually a bit English!).


The Other Side Landscape Company built Adrian Swain‘s Bronze winning multi-layered design which also featured a garden pavilion.

The ethereal red stems of Acer palmatum ‘Senkaki’ emerging from a swathe of Carex appressa were in a quiet section of the garden, in contrast to the lineal bands of perennials between stone and timber ledges.

The blackbut pavilion benefited from the shelter of glossy-leaved Elaeocarpus reticulatus and tuckeroos.

Recycled bricks, sandstone, timber sleepers, bluestone paving and exposed aggregate with quartz, added rich textural layering.

L-R: sleepers, sandstone and helichrysum; a bowl with euphorbias and helichrysum featured above the water channel.

Adrian Swain and Michael Doak

Adrian Swain and Michael Doak

Designer Adrian Swain with Design Manager Michael Doak finding refuge in ‘Refugium’.

Image by Glenice Buck.


















Two more designs to come – watch your inbox!

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