UNISA CYCAD GARDEN

The University of South Africa

Nieuw-Muckleneuk, Pretoria

2013

UNISA extended an invitation to take part in a competition to redesign their existing Cycad garden on their Nieuw-Muckleneuk campus.  

kwpCREATE won the competition which will be constructed in 2014.

The design approach ties in with the proposed message on the Miriam Makeba Terrace’s mosaic wall that reads: “It is in the shelter of each other that we live”. The care given to HIV & AIDS affected people, along with HIV & AIDS research and development echoes the Cycad’s specializations to enable life. In turn, the design of the Cycad garden proposes robust and specialized technologies that extend the life and use of the Cycad garden.  

Information boards with QR codes of each species can be scanned with ‘smart’ phones and will directly link to a website when scanned in order to provide an uncluttered garden with aesthetic and botanical significance.

Perspective of the garden

Perspective of the garden

The existing garden is of great historical and botanical value but is hidden and underutilized.  The proposed design opens up the garden and provides gathering spaces while placing emphasis on the Cycads and their habitat specific companion plants.

Perspective of the view point into the garden

Perspective of the view point into the garden

In order to invite visitors into the garden and to highlight the grandeur of the Cycads a view point is proposed that overlooks the whole garden.

Botanical information boards

Botanical information boards

Information boards with QR codes of each species can be scanned with ‘smart’ devices and will directly link to a website when scanned.  Information is made more accessible while facilitating an uncluttered garden with aesthetic and botanical significance.

Companion planting

Companion planting

Landscape plan

Landscape plan

Extended design of Cycad garden

Extended design of Cycad garden

The landscape is designed to connect to the Miriam Makeba terrace above the garden and to tie in with the planned extension to the nearby lawns.  A greenwall and a Cycad greenhouse is also proposed on the potential parking garage to promote future educational opportunities.