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, March 20, 2015

Caryopteris clandonensis South Rose garden "The Shambles"

New developments at "The Shambles" : fixing the North West Corner,  Increasing the Epiphytic Orchid varieties 

Brassia “Rex Okika"  x 5 Orchid Walk

Degarmoara Flying High “Hawii”  x 5 Orchid walk

Miltassia Charles M Fitch “Izumi” This is a hybrid between Brassia verrucosa and Miltonia spectabilis registered back in 1961 by C. M. Fitch. x 5 Orchid Walk

Oncidium “Shary Baby Sweet Fragrance" x5 Orchid Walk

Brassia “Sadie Loo” x Miltassia “Christmas Eve”  x 5 Orchid walk

Dendrobium nobile cultivars x 10 cuttings , all from Mt.Nebo, all in Rainforest area now.

Dendrobium speciosisimum  x 1  from Mt Nebo

Salvia Mexicana “Limelight” x 2 This salvia is a cultivar of Salvia mexicana and is native to the Queretaro Province of Mexico. It was introduced to the horticultural world in 1978 by Robert Ornduff, from the Univesity,  Unversity of California Botanical Gardens in Berkeley. 

Salvia corrugata native habitat of the Columbia, Peru and Ecuador, where it thrives in the Andes Mountains at 8000 to 8900 feet. The plant was introduced into the horticultural world in 2000 after being collected from South America in 1988. All the plants in cultivation are descended from the 6 seeds that germinated from all that were collected. The name ‘corrugata’ refers to the corrugations in leaves.

Salvia "Superior Purple x 2 replacing losses. East margin of Orchid Walk.

Heliotrope arborense "Golden Heliotrope"  x 2 , One in front path garden so far.

Asplenium nidus x 8 from local Orchid grower and 1 from Mt Nebo garden. All in rainforest walk

Clivia nobilis x 10  from Mt Nebo , All in rainforest walk

Large ferms unspecified + Myosorum fern and Dieffenbachia all planted into rainforest area

Monday, March 16, 2015

A heritage garden for a heritage house.

Coochin Coochin Homestead 1920
Coochin Coochin Homestead 2005
I often look at suburban housing around Brisbane  as I love domestic spaces and way homes and gardens are used. The over all picture could generally be enhanced by gardens , footpath planting and maintenance of public spaces. What seems to be missing in our overly landscaped environment are the soft edges which is where gardens come in to play.
A garden that echo's the period of a house will give the house a context and it doesn't matter if the house is a 1875 mansion , workers cottage or a dwelling built in the 50's , 60's or 70's .
An inappropriate garden that does not work with the building is missing a great opportunity to make a valuable statement and preserve garden history.  I think every house has an ideal garden style that will suit it as well as the needs of a contemporary owner.A great deal of effort,time and consideration goes into home restoration however once the re-stumping, roofing,timber work, wiring ,plumbing, verandahs ,interiors, and painting are done the garden can often be an after thought especially if significant trees have been removed or there has been great disruption to the site.
 It would probably be best for the renovation of the house and garden to be planned even before the work begins. This is the time when an inventory of plants can be made and remnant trees, shrubs identified. Remnant landscaping such as paths, outdoor garden edgings can also give clues to inform your garden design.It is worth getting an opinion form a plants person who can identify plants that are worth keeping as even the most forlorn specimen might just need water, pruning or fertilising to bring it back to health and vigour.Some plants are just weeds and can grow to be extraordinary pests and will need to be removed. A  worthy garden plant that has survived drought and neglect is just the plant you want to keep .When I see the swift , careless destruction of a garden, the removal of a tree it always makes me think of the loss of decades of growth ,  maturity and the natural ecosystem that supported numerous plants and insects . Nine times out of ten a landscaper will come in and plant a lilly pilly or two and the gormless won't even notice it anyway. ( But it's native so it must be good)
The message is not to be too hasty with the destruction of any garden.
In our book 'A Garden Forever ', we give examples of how to keep records through photographs, drawings, stories and plant lists. We acknowledge the gardeners who gardened before us and the land before settlement. It is very interesting to research our ancestry and to discover the former owners of the houses we live in and learning about gardens is just an extension of this.
Keeping records today is the history of the future.
A garden is an artificial space and to create a garden that accents the period of the home is a way of learning more fully about the way people lived in the past. Most domestic Queensland gardens had fruit trees like mango ,banana and mulberries and many had shade trees like Jacarandas. Many people kept chooks and had productive vegetable gardens , ornamental gardens ,a rotary clothes hoist an incinerator and an outhouse.The domestic garden today is not that different . We might need car ports , entertainment areas and swimming pools but I refuse to believe that it needs to lose the softness and the atmosphere that gardens should have.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Bunya Nut Corner

It seems as though the garden has been a bit out of control over summer but finally growth looks to be slowing down or maybe I'm just on top of it at last.
As I am forever changing things in my garden and seeking out new areas to fill up with plants I am now trying to improve all the corners of the property. The area under the Bunya Pine and Hoop Pine is now clear and it is safe to walk as the bunya crop has finished??
We clearly feel that we need more land for our garden but with a lack of funds or available land I think we will just have to be content with what we have.
There is plenty of bud forming on the Gordonia's and the many camellias in the garden which will bloom around Easter . Hopefully some flowers will wait for the Open Garden on Anzac Weekend.
Today we have tied numerous orchids onto trees in the "Orchid Walk" and I even made the special effort of getting out the ladder and popping the plants a bit higher that our usual eye level for everything. They will look lovely trailing down and tall people will be impressed after all those years of looking down on our orchids.
Other jobs today included planting in the rainforest and trimming back overhanging branches of the Bolly Gum aka ( the Bollywood!) to let some more light in on the orchids.
The ute has been a God send and trips to the dump have been rewarded with loads of  free mulch which has topped up many of the beds. It all sounds a bit dull when you write it down but for me I just never get tired of working in my garden and discovering plants ,seeing butterflies and birds, sharing the place with others and passing on the Bunya nuts.   Kyleigh