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

Friday, August 24, 2012

Book Launch and Garden Party Preparations.

Our book "An Open Garden and Visiting Gardens by Motor Car" is a limited edition (100 copies only) colourful exploration of the experience of opening a garden to the public. The whys, whens and hows of this will hopefully make interesting reading for anyone who has opened their own garden or enjoys visiting them.
It is a glossy grown ups picture book of beautiful gardens we have visited.
For those who buy the book for $60 (the cost of printing a hard cover in Australia) we will give a complimentary copy of our 224 page hard cover book "Over the Fence and Overlooked, Traditional Plants in Queenslands Gardening Heritage" and  copy of our 1.2 hour DVD "A Garden in the Rain". I'd say that was great value.
The garden is holding up beautifully in the dry weather. Not only has our "Plough Inn" been rescued and renovated but Ed Donlen is helping us put power and water on in our big shed after 20 years. We will empty this of old cars and use it for under cover seating during the book launch garden party.
 "Plough Inn" before and after
Roll on September
Michael Simpson

Blackall Range Horseless Carriage Club 20years.

The Blackall Range Horseless Carriage Club recently honoured Kyleigh and I as a couple from the original years (after 1992) who are still active in the club. Well, still active from time to time.
Members of the club graciously helped us with a big boundary cleanup before our Open garden in 2011, and help stabilize the "Plough Inn" before its renovation this year.
It has always been a wonderful social club to belong to with very catholic views on old cars. The lion shall lie down with the lamb, just as the Rolls Royce shall park with the Ford Prefect in the BRHCC
Michael Simpson

Garden Party Launch of "An Open Garden"

 Rhodomytus tomentosa at "The Shambles"
It is less than a month until our garden party to launch our book "An Open Garden, and Visiting Gardens by Motor Car". The Plough Inn is nearly ready for the grand reopening and it promises to be  great day.
At the launch of the "Open Gardens Australia" season at Nindooinbah last weekend, and while writing invitations to our own garden party I couldn't help but marvel at the extraordinary range of different types and themes of gardens which are open for the public through the scheme. I hope our book can convey something of the experience of opening to the public and illustrates the beauty of some of the laces which we have visited.
Locally, not a drop of rain for more than a month unfortunately. Two out of three tanks just about empty but thankfully the mature shrubs, trees and perennials at "The Shambles " show little sign of drying out.
New spring foliage is appearing on deciduous trees and shrubs such as Red cedar (Toona ciliata), Japanese Maple (Acer spp) ,Weigela florida, Persimmons (Diospiyros kaki), Hibiscus syriacus, Hihiscus mutabilis and on our flowering deciduous Magnolias. Our young Pomegranates "alba flore pleno" and "Andre le Roi"(Punica granatum) have lovely golden red new foliage.
August flowers are welcome on Magnolia soulangeana "Nigra", Kerria japonica flore pleno, Michelias, Abutilons, Salvias and Pentas, Solanum jasminoides, Jasminium polyanthum and the lovely Buddleja salvifolia and Osmanthus fragrans et al.
Spring buds and spot flowers are everywhere, for example Buddleja "Wattlebird", Eranthemum pulchelum, Erysum bicolor, Scuttelaria ventenatii, Rhododendron indica (Azalea), Pieris japonica, Spiraea cantoniensis, Eupatorium megalophyllum, Viburnum megalocephalum and many of our terrestrial orchids. The king orchid (Thelychiton speciosus) has several yellow sprays already.
Quite a few of our old roses have fat buds and foliage has remained healthy because of the dry weather. 
Everything is set for a great spring, the grass is still green and all of the spring budding promises a lovely display for our garden party on 22nd september. Just a little rain would really help. 
Michael Simpson