Leanne has a sixth sense for nonsense, is big on organising functions, and is devoted to cappuccinos and indoor plants. All these powers combined make her the perfect divisional head of Life Indoors. A charismatic go-getter, Leanne has a great eye for beautifying interiors with indoor plants, and she is a massive cheerleader for their benefits. Born in Port Elizabeth, Leanne has been working in the green industry for 20 years.
Her favourite indoor plant: Fiddle-leaf fig (Ficus lyrata)
Her favourite indigenous tree: Natal mahogany (Trichilia emetica)
She believes indoor plants are so important because… “NASA scientists have proven that environmental factors have a positive effect on well-being, psychological stability and stress levels. All studies indicate that nature, including indoor and outdoor plants, can contribute to the reduction of stress in the workplace. Introducing beautiful plants into a work environment automatically enhances morale, purifies the air and are found to be aesthetically pleasing.”
Born in KwaZulu-Natal, Wayne helps head up the Life Sports Turf division. He got into sports construction because, as avid soccer players, he and his business partner Paul Pretto saw a gap in the market for quality sporting facilities. Wayne and Paul both have 10 years’ experience working with synthetic turf.
His favourite sport: Soccer
He believes that sports fields are so important because… “Sports fields are the modern-day colosseums. They are arenas that allow the physically elite to engage in structured combat, which provides a release for the competitive human spirit. Sports are also an important part of a child’s physical development and keep kids off the street. Physical activity helps people work as a team and maintain a healthy lifestyle.”
Bongani didn’t always want to be in the gardening industry but was heavily pursued by Oscar and Deighton. 10 years later, Bongani will openly tell you he was forced into the job. He will also tell you that he doesn’t see himself doing anything else but landscaping, and his career has come up roses. Bongani has been working in the landscaping industry since Life Green Group’s fruition a decade ago.
His favourite South African plant: Pride of De Kaap (Bauhinia galpinii)
His favourite indigenous tree: White stinkwood (Celtis africana)
He believes that gardens are so important because… “People don’t live very long without gardens.”
Originally Anthony wanted to be an architect, but he was introduced to the budding world of landscape architecture and that was that! Anthony now has 23 years’ experience in the gardening industry.
His favourite South African plant: Orange River lily (Crinum bulbispermum)
His favourite indigenous tree: Marula (Sclerocarya birrea)
He believes that gardens are so important because… “I am one of the privileged few to be in a job that I love. I take great pleasure in being creative. Creating gardens is being able to give joy to humanity by using God’s most splendid gifts. Landscapers do the opposite of what artists do - they take a drawing and turn it into reality, whereas an artist takes a pretty landscape and turns it into a picture. Both are works of art.”
Born and raised in Pretoria, Antoinette developed an interest in landscaping thanks to her parents. Her dad passed on his knowledge of fauna and flora, and she always gardened with her mother. They also had their own fruit and vegetable garden in town. Since receiving her diploma in horticulture, Antoinette has been working in the world of plants for 28 years.
Her favourite South African plant: Campfire crassula (Crassula capitella)
Her favourite indigenous tree: Forest elder (Nuxia floribunda) and lavender croton (Croton gratissimus)
She believes gardens are so important because… “For me a garden is an outlet for my creative side and also the closest place for me to be to God. In a garden you can take nothing and turn it into something, and after a stressful day, there is nothing as calming and peaceful as watching and listening to nature. Everybody should have a garden - to grow, to harvest, and to enjoy.”