Sonica Botanica

Sonica Botanica: Stories and Sounds from the Gardens

Sonica Botanica is a series of four audio experiences created by Patrick Cronin. Each episode responds to people, place and plants connected with specific collections or landscapes at Melbourne Gardens. Best experienced through your headphones whilst visiting the featured location.

Episode 4: Southern China Collection, Long Island, and the Water This episode journeys to the northern end of the Melbourne Gardens to discover the waterbodies that sustain life in the Gardens, their history and their significance to RBGV’s plant collections.

Episode 3: Herb Garden, Fern Gully, Sensory Garden
This episode dives into the spectacular sensorial power of plants and gardens, using three special and adjacent Melbourne Gardens locations as inspiration: the Herb Garden, Fern Gully and Sensory Garden.

Episode 2: Oak Lawn
This episode responds to Oak Lawn and its majestic trees.

Episode 1: The Arid Garden
This episode features fascinating stories of the provenance and design of the botanical collection that makes up the recently opened Arid Garden.

All interviews recorded on location at Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne.

Music, audio editing and sound design for all episodes by Patrick Cronin.

The final episode will be released in late Summer 2022.

Credits and acknowledgements for all episodes:

Credits for episode 1

Credits for episode 1
- Robert Field, donor of the Field Collection of cacti and succulents
- Andrew Laidlaw, Landscape Architect, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne and designer of the Arid Garden
- Bret Pritchard, Horticulturist and Curator of the Arid Garden, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
- Pip Wright, philosopher of science and cacti and succulent enthusiast
- Northcote High School students Edie Simpson, Ned Partridge and Maya Healy and their teacher, Lauren Jacobs
- Leo Salvo, vocal soloist

Special thanks to Donnette Field, Northcote High School and the visitors to the Arid Garden who shared their impressions and observations.

Credits for episode 2

Credits for episode 2
- Peter Berbee, Arborist, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
- Kim Coleman, Learning Facilitator, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Tim Entwisle, Director and Chief Executive, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Susan Joachim, Forest therapy guide and President, International Nature and Forest Therapy Alliance
- Lenka Vanderboom, Indigenous Learning Facilitator, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

Special thank you to Chris Andrews, Sam May, Didier Sepulveda and the visitors who shared their stories, impressions, and observations of Oak Lawn.

Credits for episode 3

Credits for episode 3
- Renee Wierzbicki, Horticulturist and Curator, Herb and Medicinal Collection, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Chris Cole, Director, Melbourne Gardens, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Erica Tandori, Artist in Residence, Rossjohn Lab, Monash University
- Sam May, Aboriginal Learning Facilitator, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Stu Favilla, Musician and Interaction Designer, Swinburne University of Technology
- Misha Chute, Horticulturist and Curator, Fern Gully, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria
- Millie Wee, Horticulturist and Curator, Sensory Garden, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

Special thanks to Tim Uebergang; David Plant; In My Nature Forest Therapy guides David and Emma, and participants in Forest Therapy at Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne; teachers Anna Berlin and Penny Latham and the students of 9H Melbourne High School; and the visitors who shared their stories, impressions and observations for this episode.

Credits for episode 4

Credits for Episode 4
-Terry Smyth, Horticulturist and Curator, Southern China Collection, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

-Andrew Laidlaw, Landscape Architect, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
-Jakobi, Aboriginal Programs Facilitator, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

-Steven Liu, Team Leader, Landscape Systems, Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne


Special thanks Yim, Su-Lin, Shanti and Asil (aka The Squad); the landscape painting students of VCA Secondary School and their teacher, Sean Peoples; and the visitors to the Gardens, who shared their stories, impressions, and observations for this episode.