Top ten list of garden plants

  • Abutilons of all kinds
  • Buddlejas old and new
  • Epiphytic orchids and ferns
  • Gordonia species
  • Heliotrope, Lemon verbena, Fennel and herbs
  • Michelias of all sorts
  • Perennial Salvias large and small
  • Species Camellias
  • Tea and China Roses
  • Weigela of all types

Montville Rose

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Severe Dry and failure of Usual spring Display

Dead dry after a record hot dry winter and now failure of any spring rains. We have bought water for our tanks for the third time this season with no sign of relief. The pool has "split' it's fibreglass skin and requires repair for the first time in 20 years.

In spite of all this has a bus tour of 40 from Hervey Bay in the garden today and the maturity of the garden has safeguarded it from sever damage during this time.
Hippeastrum papilio  'The Shambles'

Plants added August/ September 2017

Brunfelsia latifolia variegata  Fenced Rose garden

Petraeovitex bambusitrum syn P. wolfeii ‘Curtains of Gold’ ‘Wolfes Vine’  Vigourous climber with cream coloured flower bracts, discovered by Dr E D Wolfe in 1938 Malaysia, Southern Thailand. NW Corner Garden

Anigozanthos x hydrid ‘Tenacity’  Yellow flowering  NW Corner garden

Anigozanthos x hybrid ‘Bush Ballad’ Red Flowering  NW Corner

Linaria, Allysum, Sedum, Kalanchoe, Borage all added along front path garden.  Large Pots near back stairs trialling Sage, Margoram, Mints, Lavender, Rosemary and other pot herbs.
'Tawny Frog Mouth' waiting for the pool to stop leaking 
Callistemon viminalis “Captain Cook”  Criss Cross Garden west

Callistemon viminalis “Red Accent”  East of Pool Fence

Photinea x fraseri “Red Robyn” x 4  Criss  Cross Garden west border

Raphiolepis delacourtii x indica “Apple Blossom”  East border NE corner of house

Metrosideros collina “Firecracker” Variegated or variable flowering plant in the family Myrtaceae. It is native to French Polynesia and the Cook islands. The species was first formally described by botanist Johann Reinhold Forster and his son Georg Forster in 1775. It was given the name Leptospermum collinum.

Althaea officinalis (marsh-mallow,[2] marsh mallow is a perennial species indigenous to Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa, which is used as a medicinal plant and ornamental plant. Pink single flowers on an erect branching structure. A confection made from the root since ancient Egyptian time evolved into today's marshmallow treat.  Central Shrub Garden

"Shadow" waiting for rain

Buddleja davidii 'Black Knight' has been one of the most successful davidii cultivars ever released. A selection made by Ruys at the Moerheim Nursery, Dedemsvaart, Netherlands, circa 1959, it was accorded the RHS Award of Garden Merit in 1993. Central Lawn and Border Garden.

Scented Pelargoniums  ‘Pine”, ‘Rose’, ‘Ginger’ and others in raised garden box 

Rosa banksiae alba, (Single White)  Lady Banks' rose,  Banks' rose, The rose is named for Lady Banks, the wife of the botanist Sir Joseph Banks. It is a species of spring flowering, native to central and western China, in the provinces of Gansu, Guizhou, Henan, Hubei, Jiangsu, Sichuan and Yunnan, at altitudes of 500–2,200 m. The species was introduced to Europe by William Kerr, who had been sent on a plant-hunting expedition by Sir Joseph Banks. He bought the first Lady Banks' Rose, subsequently named the white Lady Banks (R. banksiae var. banksiae) from the famous Fa Tee nursery in 1807

Rosa ‘RENAE’   Medium pink Floribunda, Climber. From cutting  Thornless, repeat flowering Bred 
by Ralph S. Moore (United States, 1954)

Monday, August 28, 2017

On the cusp

The garden continues to be a focus for both Michael and myself however the elusive inspiration to create art, music or  working on new places in the garden can wane. This is even more so when the weather is dry and the garden looks a bit wilted and dusty. As much as I would like to waste my precious tank water on the garden it is just not going to happen. Plants need to tough it out and amazingly they do.
In a break from the garden the clay work has come out  and for Michael the compiling of song lists for possible busking sessions in Montville. Hopefully we are on the cusp of doing something creative but for now I blame the weather.

Monday, June 5, 2017

New roses , a visit with HRIA to "Rosevale" at Samsonvale

Roses added to the garden (from Leonie Kearney)

Visited Leonie Kearney with ‘Heritage Roses in Australia’ Queensland group at ‘Rosevale’ at Samsonvale where Leonie has a large garden and propagates and sells roses from cutting and collects  seedling roses. She has many other plants in her collection.]

'Rosevale' looking toward Leonies propagation house


“Lionel’s Double Pink China” A seedling, ours a cutting from the original from Woodford.  with Double pink scented blooms resembling the Tea rose Comtesse de Labarthe except that blooms are held upright without the Tea rose “weak neck”.

“Isabella Sprunt” Yellow Tea Rose, said to be a sport of ‘Safrano’. Isabella Sprunt Discovered by Rev. James M. Sprunt (United States, 1855). Introduced in United States by Isaac Buchanan in 1865 as 'Isabella Sprunt'. Introduced in Belgium by Verschaffelt in 1867 as 'Isabella Sprunt'.                       Strong fragrance.  Large, semi-double (9-16 petals) bloom form but not long lasting.  Blooms in flushes throughout the season.

Red Polyantha Low growing , crimson to red semi-double flowers

Grandma Fredericks Tall growing , fully double pink to crimson flowers . From Cutting of a seedling raised at Woodford

“Camnethan House Cherry Red”  Foundling from Camnethan House, Smeaton VIC. Tea. Cherry red, turning crimson–blue.

Camnethan House Cherry Red Tea Rose

“Gloire des Rosomanes”  Introduced in France by Jean-Pierre Vibert in before 1836 as 'Gloire des Rosomanes'. Introduced in Australia by Hazlewood Bros. Pty. Ltd. in before 1911 as 'Gloire des Rosomanes'. China / Bengale, Hybrid Bourbon. Plantier  France, 1825.

Papillon Tea rose, medium sized semi double blooms that start from pointed buds opening to a melody of pink tones being richer pink petals in the middle having a yellow base fading to creamy pink to white on the outer petals. 1881 Gilbert Nabonnand

The Shambles Rose

The Shambles Rose

Tea Rose One of our many cuttings grown roses. The flower looked white but it is probably a washed out Comtesse de Labarthe

SOUTH ROSE GARDEN, New bed inside the hedge. Agapathus transplanted to west of embankment.

Dan Poncet   Pink blend  Grafted bare rooted shrub  Carmine-pink.  Strong fragrance.  Full (26-40 petals), reflexed bloom form.  Dark green foliage.  Guillot Bred by Dominique Massad (France, 1999). 

Rosette Delizy  Yellow blend Tea. From cutting Flowers are yellow, carmine-pink edges, apricot highlights.  Tea fragrance.  Large, full (26-40 petals), reflexed bloom form.  Blooms in flushes throughout the season. ClĂ©ment Nabonnand (France, 1922).

The Shambles Rose

Allys Rose Pink Multiflora

The Shambles Rose

All inter[planted with Lavender, Salvias, Abutilon, Daisies, Kalanchoe, transplanted Sedum.

Many of our cuttings grown perennials and srub which were overcrowding he propagation are were planted out, waiting for rain. 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

The Shambles May Visitors and New plantings an developments

After a very successful visit by the Buderim Garden Club  on 26 5 2017 when we had 50 visitors in perfect autumn weather some New Plants were added May 2017

Through the garden admission tea and coffee and lant and book sales a generous amount was raised for frontier services (Longreach) Through the Montville uniting Church.

NW Corner, Rainforest Corner

Licuala ramsayii  ‘Australian Fan Palm’ A medium sized, single stemmed palm, usually up to 15 m in height, though it can reach 25 m. The stem is normally quite straight and slender and up to 20 cm in diameter. The crown consists of large fan-shaped leaves. The leaves up to 2 meters long, with feather-like fronds. Occurs in NEQ from about Cooktown, south to about Ingham. Altitudinal range from Cape Tribulation Queensland, near sea level to 1100 m. Occurs in rainforest, swamp forest, mangroves, littoral forest and in diverse riparian and riverine habitats, on various soil types. Licuala ramsayi (F. Muell.) was first described in 1874 as Livistona ramsayi by Ferdinand von Mueller. The new species was based on a collection made by Edward Pearson Ramsay from “Rockingham’s Bay,” which was a broad location name for the area around the coastal township of Cardwell and the mountainous Cardwell Ranges hinterland. Ramsay was a self taught naturalist with a special interest in ornithology. In 1876, he was appointed the first Australian-born curator of the Australian Museum. In the original publication of L. ramsayi there is no indication of when Ramsay

had made the collection at Rockingham Bay.

Schlefflera elegentissima syn. Plerandra elegantissima, syn. Dizygotheca elegantissima “False Aralia’ It is an evergreen shrub or tree. Its leaves are thin, coppery red to dark green with toothed edges. On adult plants the leaves are much broader. In autumn it bears clusters of pale green flowers followed by black fruit. John Gould Veitch collected Schlefflera syn Aralia elegantissima, which was first introduced to the world during the London ‘Great Spring Show’ of 1873. New Caledonia

Leea coccinea ‘ Hawaiian Holly’ . The Leea is a relative of the Fatsia. The burgundy Leea, also known as Hawaiian Holly, has bronzy red foliage. Leea's are a shrubby plant bearing large leaves with each leaf divided into numerous pointed leafletsThe genus was named by Linnaeus after James Lee, the Scottish nurseryman based in Hammersmith, London who introduced many new plant discoveries to England at the end of the 18th centuryGolden Fern (not identified). Burma

Fenced Rose garden (west end of track)

Transplanted 3 x Hymenocallis x harrisiana.’Sacred Lily of the Incas’. Hymenocallis harrisiana Herb. is a deciduous species from Mexico. The strap shaped leaves are glaucous, as it comes from an arid area. The flower has a small scented corona (crown). Each flower lasts only one night. The genus Hymenocallis was created by Richard Anthony Salisbury in 1812,[5] when he separated out a number of species formerly placed in Pancratium, starting with Hymenocallis littoralis. The main reason for the separation was that the fruits have only two seeds in each locule. Salisbury explained the name as referring to the "beautiful membrane which connects the filaments.

Central Shrub garden  (North end near grouping of Holmskiodia sanguinea (Blue and Yellow)  Chinese-hat plant is a large, sprawling evergreen tropical shrub native to the lower elevations of the southern Himalayas. First growing erect, the new, young branches dart outward and weep creating a scrambling plant that is almost vine-like. The genus name commemorates Johan Theodor Holmskiold (1731-1793), a Danish botanist who wrote Beata ruris otia fungis Danicis, published in two volumes in 1790 and 1799. It is native to the Himalayas (India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar) Chinese-hat plant is a large, sprawling evergreen tropical shrub native to the lower elevations of the southern Himalayas. First growing erect, the new, young branches dart outward

and weep creating a scrambling plant that is almost vine-like.

Holmskiodia sanguinea

Holmskiodia sanguinea ‘Mandarin Blue’

Holmskioldia sanguinea ‘Mandarin Rouge’ (red)

Holmskiodia sanguinea ‘Mandarin Sunrise’ (yellow-green)

Transplanted 1 x Salvia oxyphora

Central lawn and border

Adjacent 2 mature Holmskioldia sanguinea (orange) see above. One of our mature plantings

Holmskioldia sanguinea “Mandarin Rouge’ (red)

Apium graveolens var. rapaceum Celeriac. Celeriac originating in the Mediterranean Basinis a variety of celery cultivated for its edible roots, hypocotyl, and shoots.

Mentha × piperita var. citrate  Eau-de-cologne mint. Mentha citrata has a strong lavender odor due to the two chemical constituents, linalyl acetate (45%) and linalool (45-50%), which makes up around 90% of the oil. The leaves and flowering plant have traditionally been claimed to have analgesic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cholagogic, diaphoretic, and vasodilator properties. Like other members of the genus Mentha, it is best not used by pregnant women because large doses can cause miscarriage.

Front path garden

Hibiscus acetosella ‘Voodoo’ (Cranberry or African Rosemallow) Deeply cut crenate leaves which are dark maroon to a patchy red/green appearance. Solitary flowers vary in color and are most often the dark pink to maroon that is characteristic of the foliage with darker vein-like markings. H. acetosella first recognized in 1896 by French botanists as a distinct plant and given the name it currently has. The plant was probably first found growing around African villages in the southern Congo-Angola-Zambia region.

Zepheranthes citrina (Yellow Rain Lily) A species of bulbous perennial belong to the family Amaryllidaceae.  Zephyranthes citrina was described by Baker and published in Botanical Magazine 108: pl. 6605, in 1882 Mexico

South Rose garden

Rosa ‘ MME LAMBARD’. (TEA,DOUBLE  REMONTANT from cuttings)     An excellent, tall sturdy and disease free rose. The mid-pink double flowers have a sturdier neck than Comptesse de Labarthe. Low maintenance. Lacharme, France, 1864 transplanted from below north verandah.

Apium graveolens var. rapaceum Celeriac. Celeriac originating in the Mediterranean Basinis a variety of celery cultivated for its edible roots, hypocotyl, and shoots.

Cosmos atrosanguineus, (chocolate cosmos), is a species of Cosmos, native to Mexico, where it is extinct in the wild. The species was introduced into cultivation in 1902, where it survives as a single clone reproduced by vegetative propagation. Cosmos atrosanguineus is a herbaceous perennial plant growing to 40–60 cm tall, with a fleshy tuberous root. Dark maroon-brown flowers.

Below North Verandah

Plectranthus scutellarioides. Syn Solenostemon  syn. Coleus blumei syn. Coleus scutellarioides

Short-lived perennial plant plant.The species is extremely variable in the colour and shape of the leaves. The leaves of the wild species may be somewhat variegated but this has been developed to an extreme degree in cultivated varieties, whose leaves may include one or more shades of green, white, cream, yellow, pink, red, maroon and dark purple. The species was first described by Carl Linnaeus in 1763, as Ocimum scutellarioides. The genus Ocimum is best known for Ocimum basilicum, sweet basil. The species was first introduced into Europe from Java in 1851 by a Dutch horticulturalist. At this time, there were few leaf colours and shapes. A wider variety was available by 1877, when the American William Bull offered seeds at 43 US cents each. However, by selecting for seed production, early flowering was inadvertently favoured, and leaf colour also declined in intensity. Coleus breeding revived in the early 1940s, and by the 1980s, the availability of an improved range of cultivars led to coleus becoming the tenth most important bedding crop in the US.  Plectranthus scutellarioides is native to India (including the Himalayas), Sri Lanka, China, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia

Thursday, March 23, 2017

A wet march after a Record dry February and new plantings.

Plants added end of March 2017
A record dry February 2017 has transformed to some wet days with over 200MM rain in the first 3 weeks of March. Days remain hot and humid and often cloudy with persisting showers.
Justicia brandegeana Front Path garden
Mussaenda phillipica .Mussaenda ‘Queen Sirikit’ (Mussaenda ‘Dona Hilaria x Dona Aurora’) is named for Queen Consort of Thailand, the longest reigning head of state in the world. It is possibly the most widely grown Mussaenda in the world. It has multiple pale pink sepals which have a distinct darker edge. Flowers are bright yellow. Following heavy rain, the weight of the flower heads has been known to break branches. Mussaenda philippica (Tropical Dogwood) is native to the Philippines, Indonesia and New Guinea. The flowers have white sepals and orangy-yellow flowers. It grows in cultivation to a a shrub 1.8 to 2.5 metres (6 to 7 feet) high by 1.2 to 1.8 metres (4 to 6 feet) wide. This species is less widely seen than its well known cultivar Mussaenda philippica ‘Dona Aurora’ (Dona Aurora, Buddha’s Lamp). This was a chance sport first collected in 1915 by Calixto Mabesa on Mt Makiling and then recollected by Hugh Curran and Mamerto Sulit at the College of Forestry grounds at the University of the Philippines Los Banos in 1930. This cultivar has multiple floral sepals (often 5 per flower) instead of just one. This was propagated and dedicated in 1930 to Mrs Aurora Quezon, wife of the Philippines President. This plant is the parent of almost all hybrids. Criss Cross garden west border
Mussaenda phillipica  “Dona Luz” Mussaenda ‘Dona Luz’ (M. ‘Dona Hilaria x Dona Aurora’) is named after Philippines First lady Luz Banzon-Magsaysay. It has multiple shrimp pink sepals which are inclined to turn under at their tips. Criss Cross garden west border
Pseuderanthemum laxiflorum  ‘Purple Riot” shooting star. This is a well-branched herbaceous perennial to small shrub with opposite leaves and purple flowers held singly or in small groups near branch tips. This plant is native to Polynesia Fiji Islands   Central Shrub garden
Ipomoea horsfalliae Cardinal Creeper. This is a winter bloomer. The ruby red to magenta-violet flowers, 4 – 7 cm in diameter. Tropical vine is named for Charles Horsfall (1776-1846), an avid botanist who was Lord Mayor of Liverpool, and whose wife, Dorothy, was a noted botanical artist. This spectacular plant is a native of South America (Brazil, Guyana, Surinam and Venezuela), and has also become naturalized in the humid forests of the Caribbean, especially in Jamaica. It is also very common, and now naturalized, in Hawaii, where it was introduced by Prince Kuhio (1871-1922). In its native range the plant is almost solely fertilized by hummingbirds, and where these are lacking or scarce, fruiting seldom occurs. Most parts of the plant are poisonous if ingested. Arch East Border garden. SE Corner Car garage.
Sparaxis (Harlequin lower) Sparaxis tricolor has bright red flowers with yellow and black centres. Many named hybrid cultivars were bred from S. bulbifera and S. tricolor. endemic to Cape Province, South Africa. NW Corner garden
Narcissus jonquila (Jonquil) “Paperwhite” Jonquil: This term actually refers to a specific type of daffodil known as Narcissus jonquilla, although the name is often used as a more general term for daffodils in certain parts of the country. They are most easily identified by their dark green, tube-shaped leaves as compared to other types of daffodils which have flat leaves. Jonquils also tend to have clusters of several flowers, instead of just one bloom, along with a strong scent. NW corner garden

 Camellia sasanqua "Hiryu" . Camellias starting to flower already here.
Freesia refracta alba Freesia alba is an herbaceous perennial growing from a corm and producing an erect, often branched stem up to 40 cm (16 in) centimeters tall with several leaves up to about 15 centimeters long. The inflorescence is a spike of several fragrant flowers with usually white tepals marked with yellow and purple. The genus Freesia is named after F.H.T. Freese (died 1876), a German physician from Kiel and a pupil of Ecklon. Freesia has a rather complicated and confusing history with lots of wrong names, misapplication of names and synonymy-for the full version see the 1982 revision by Peter Goldblatt. The first two species that were cultivated in Europe in 1766, were both placed in different genera viz. F. corymbosa was thought to be a Gladiolus and F. caryophyllacea was thought to be an Ixia. Freesia refracta arrived there in 1795 and was also thought to be a Gladiolus. Freesia sparrmannii was collected in 1770 and described in 1814, also as a Gladiolus, and the fifth species was called Gladiolus xanthospila but this one has never been related to any wild plant and is thought to be a form of F. caryophyllacea. Ecklon, Zeyher and Drege, all active in the early 1800s, sent back several species including F. sparrmannii, F. refracta, F. corymbosa, F. leichtlinii and F. andersoniae. It was only in 1866 that Freesia was described as a distinct genus. Freesia alba was first described in 1878 by G.L.Meyer, and became well known in Europe, as F. refracta var. alba. Gumbleton recognized Freesia alba as a distinct species in 1896. There is no record of how it got there, but Freesia alba first appeared in the English nursery trade in 1878 and quickly spread to Europe and North America. It appears to have caused quite a sensation, Cape province South Africa. NW corner garden

Allium sphaerocephalon “Drumsticks” Ornamental onions have small vibrant flower heads that change from green to a red-purple. Front path garden where hopefully they won't rot in present wet days.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

What is a garden?

Have people forgotten what a garden is ?
I imagine that in many cases some people would have no idea of the sensory delight of a full blown garden that relies on plants, design and maturity. I was really looking forward to the latest tv show about garden design but yet again there is so much focus on start from scratch creation of a designed space. Scary amounts of money are spent and major earth moving is often the norm.
Horses for courses .
People who visit our garden so often say they would like to have a garden like ours.A garden is never finished and even at 25 years in our care The Shambles will always be changing purely because plants grow, some die and we just get design ideas that will only make it more interesting.
It is the layers of maturity which is really only achievable by staying in one place and not selling up every couple of years.
I have been burnt in the past by people who ask for plants which I am always happy to give only to find out that they are selling the property just when things are taking off. Prorogation takes time and in the case of roses it is often by the second year that they are ready to plant out.
Often I am asked to visit a garden and to make suggestions of how to make it more manageable or to redesign it. It is so essential to get a good understanding of what the owner wants and their level of commitment because most gardens take work. It is also essential to value what is already in the garden and what past gardeners have done. The remnant plants will inform me of what grows well on the site. Taking note of the hard landscaping that has already been imposed on a site is also necessary and can either help or hinder a project. Rediscovering focal points and views or simply reducing tree branches can change the whole feeling of a garden letting in sunlight even into the interiors of the house.
I think that  some garden designers have lost the plot . I think that so many suburban gardens are being treated so heavily with hard landscaping and a very small range of plants that not even bees and butterflies will want to visit. I'm not sure but if the next housing estate held back on the concrete driveways and 6ft high fences and loosened up the planting maybe there could be somewhere for the kids to play .There is a difference between garden landscapers , garden designers and gardeners and if you want a garden that is one thing but if you want an outdoor room that is something quite different.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Doctors wife

I happened to see a  sweaty lycra clad lady emerging from a gym when it occurred to me that any exercise that doesn't involve dirt and minor injury is not my thing. As for lycra or having to go and purchase the stuff -I don't think so. My gardening attire is strictly rags with pockets.My clothes actually wear out to the stage of compost when I finally discard them. There are so many benefits to using your garden as an exercise space. The over  loaded wheel barrows require speed and balance as they are pushed around the garden down to the mulch pile or fire pit. Plenty of deep bends can be achieved just picking stuff up , lugging pots along with wrestling the dog for the palm fronds or the mower. Upper body stretches and toning is all part of reaching those dead branches and  bringing shrubs down in height .Cleaning out gutters and climbing up on the shed roof is another one for balance.  It is all about the struggle and not being arsed to go and get a ladder or wait for help.
Then there are the rocks. There is so often a need to move rocks around and the trusty furniture remover is ideal for this -there will often be several attempts at making the rock stay on but that is all part of the exercise  routine. Digging is great for the arms and the therapeutic  buzz you get from an open fire is rarely done at an indoor gym. Our dog "Shadow " is so fond of palm fronds that he will attempt to drag them off the fire in full blaze - that is when your  sprint comes in.

The thing about exercise in the garden is that you don't have to drive anywhere and it can take all day so there has to be some positive out come for all that physical activity.  The worst thing is discovering that you have run out of milk or something and need to do the quick dash out in the real world where real people are . That is when I or others notice my state of attire -OMG is that the Doctors wife?