Bayley LuuTomes has got a challenge on his hands.

The international award-winning architectural garden designer will be creating an inspirational 100sqm feature garden, titled Breaking Free, for FFFLAIR 2020.

FFFLAIR 2020, Finding our Future With Flair, is a five day horticultural celebration which will be held in Otaraua Park, by the Waikanae River, on the Kāpiti Coast, from February 26 to March 1.

It will bring award-winning floral designers and well-known names in the gardening and horticulture industry, together with local experts and producers.


Bayley's garden will be inspired from the 3D combination puzzle Rubik's Cube.

A model of Breaking Free.
A model of Breaking Free.

"This Rubik's Cube inspired concept explores the idea of cracking a code and revealing a hidden garden.

"It's my imagination gone wild.

"Taking an iconic toy and giving it a landscape twist.

"People will be invited to walk through the garden and explore all that has been hidden inside the cube."

The garden will have a variety of plants to enable people to get ideas for their own garden.

"For example under trees will be shady plants, in the open will be plants that are exposed to the weather.

"Watson's Garden, a nursery in Ōtaki, have kindly come on board as a partnership with the event.


"I will be going to see them to find out what types of plants we can showcase in the garden as well as introducing other plants local to the district."

Bayley would be trying to "create a functional space which also has a creative flair to it".

He was getting a lot of positive feedback about the project when showing people the model of the concept.

"My job now is to actually pull it off.

"Because I've never built this before I'm still working out the mechanics of it.

"It's one thing creating a beautiful model or sketch, it's another trying to make it happen."

The challenge, especially the 3m x 3m cube, was "exciting and daunting".

He was delighted to take part in FFFLAIR after being asked by organiser Ben Hoyle if he would like to get involved.

"Ben and I go back a long way.

"When I first started in this industry Ben was my mentor.

"I learnt a lot from him so it was an honour to be invited to design a garden for the event."

Bayley has been involved in the industry since 2013 when he won Student of the Year in the Emerging Designs competition of the Ellerslie International Garden Show, in Christchurch, for his rooftop garden.

"Since then I've been travelling the world designing gardens.

"I've been to Hampton Court Palace in the United Kingdom, Gardening World Cup Japan, Singapore Garden Festival, been to South Africa, United States, and now Kāpiti."

FFFLAIR was a "first of its kind".

"There's a lot of beautiful flower and garden shows but what makes this different is that it is more a horticultural led event.

"Yes you will get the beautiful gardens and displays but it's also a place of learning and community driven.

"You will get talks from the experts about how to prune your trees, or what's doing well and what's not, and it's industry led.

"I'm excited for this event because it will bring together like-minded people to showcase their creativity and share knowledge."