Simon Leake

Principal Soil Scientist and Founder

Graduating in Agricultural Science in 1981 with first-class honors major in soil science from University of Sydney Simon established SESL in 1984.

Simon found work providing advice and analysis in the urban amenity horticulture and landscape architecture industries establishing a loyal client base with landscape architects, soil and growing media manufacturers, nurseries and arborists. Composting and waste resource recycling to land is a major area of expertise and SESL runs several monitoring programs for waste to land recycling.

Simon is also an expert in soil/vegetation rehabilitation and reconstruction such as in mine sites and urban renewal projects.

Notable major projects include;

  • Little Manly Point,
  • Darling Harbour,
  • Bond University,
  • Sydney Olympic Park,
  • One Central Park 
  • Barangaroo

The soil design and trial work for the One Central Park and Barangaroo projects provided opportunities to develop objective science-based soil specifications to ensure fit-for-purpose soil applications. This work has culminated in the publication “Soils for Landscape Development”, a practical guide for the future development of landscape soil technology and the specification of soil and growing media.

Simon was awarded Australian Horticulturist of the Year 2016 by the AIH Inc. for his work on Barangaroo and “Soils for Landscape Development” received the Secretary’s Award for Excellence in Horticultural Literature 2015 by the AIH Inc. SESL Australia and Spakman Mossop Michael were awarded winner of the Land Management category by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architecture 2013 for revegetation work at the Glenugie by-pass highway upgrade.

Simon is Technical Director and soil science subject matter expert at SESL and enjoys mentoring the SESL team and encouraging the objective application of science knowledge to solve client problems.

Horticulturist of the year 2016 – Awarded by The Australian Institute of Horticulture

Certified Professional Soil Scientist (CPSS) – Soil Science Australia

Registered Horticulturist – The Australian Institute of Horticulture.

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