Garden Visit to Pyalong, Vic. Feb 2022

This is Granite rock country. Although it was a hot day, it was lovely to see the property, and admire how much work has been put into the extensive revegetation of the acres surrounding the house, done over 20 plus years. The photos below are of the expansive gardens surrounding the house, a continuing project.

Images and text by Jill L

Update to our Online Spring Plant Sale 20th Sept 2021

Check out our updated online Plant Sale forms if you haven’t already ordered. Some species have already sold out as many are in small numbers.

See our Australian Plants Expo page for revised Order Forms, and all details, including other plant sellers you may wish to order from.

Images of Mike Williams clockwise from top left: Kunzea affinis, Correa reflexa ‘Point Hicks’, Prostanthera aspalathoides – red, Prostanthera striatiflora, Eremophila lehmanniana, Melaleuca radula, Prostanthera calycina.

SPRING PLANT SALE NOW ON – until 10th October 2021

In place of our usual Australian Plants Expo, we are running a limited Online Spring Plant Sale. Numbers are very limited, but there are other plant sellers you may be able to order from as well. See our Australian Plants Expo page for full details. We will endeavour to add some photos of species to our Facebook page, to show the wonderful variety of species available.

Out & about in Eltham, Warrandyte & Watson’s Creek – April 2020

Here is a great selection of images from a garden in Eltham, also some from Warrandyte Kinglake Conservation Reserve, and from Happy Valley Track in Watsons Creek.  These were taken by one of our members, Sue, in April, when we were able to wander locally.

Sue’s garden in Eltham is quite new, just over 3 years old.  She inherited a very old, overgrown, mostly exotic garden and has worked to turn it into a native garden in that time. It is on clay with some steep sections and has large trees in surrounding gardens providing shade in hers. She still couldn’t resist planting a few trees but otherwise likes small plants, grasses and groundcovers.

There’s lots to look forward to when we can wander once again. Meanwhile enjoy your own gardens – gardening is great exercise, and relaxing for the mind.

Images: Sue Gwilym, and Evan Gwilym.

Flower Display August 2019

Enjoy the huge selection of flowers brought to our August meeting from members’ gardens – in Early Spring.  There were a good selection of eremophilas and hakeas and plenty of acacias.

Thanks to Ben Eaton and Mike R. for images.

Click on an image, and scroll through via the arrows. You may see extra information at the bottom of each image.

Flowering in February 2019

Way back in the warmer month of February, members brought in a wonderful array of flowers and potted plants to our meeting from their gardens – in Late Summer.  These are just a few of them.  Some of the more unusual ones were Verticordia luteola and V. pennigera.  Still flowering this month were all the daisies (though no images this time).

Thanks to Ben Eaton and Rob Dunlop for images. 

Click on an image to scroll through via the arrows. You may see extra information at the bottom of each image.

A special garden in Croydon – September 29, 2018

On Grand Final day eight members attended our garden visit to landscape designer, Merele’s Croydon North garden.  Merele explained how the 4 year old garden took shape. Unfortunately, in order to erect a fence between properties, some original vegetation had to be removed, exposing Merele and daughter’s house to the main road.  Merele set about planting to screen and to show off her favoured west Australian plants: mallee Eucalyptus leptophylla and E. dolychorhyncha, several eremophilas, grevilleas, a stunning Chorizema cordatum, Hardenbergia violacea and other species were planted.  Merele’s garden is “densely planted in the way that Australian plants grow naturally, to help protect them from the wind, sun and predators”.

Of interest was a sport growing on Eremophila mackinlayi, the juvenile foliage of Eucalyptus lunata ‘Moon Lagoon’, an Eremophila splendens and an unnamed Scholtzia.  On an exposed corner, Eremophila nivea had spread to 3m across and at 2m in height was a spectacular sight, other younger Mallee Eucs were starting to develop, Banksia praemorsa (red) in flower, Grevillea alpina ‘Warby Range’, Westringeas and Correas all fitting in.

Along a particularly hot stretch of concrete driveway, Eremophila freelingii, Isopogon, Darwinia and Dampiera were all thriving.  On the shadier house side, Persoonia pinifolia, Spyridium, Correas, Chamelaucium and an Acacia gracilifolia combined well.  Further along in a usually damp area, Callistemon, Melaleucas, Lambertia, a Correa and surprisingly a pink form of Eremophila drummondii were taking advantage of the extra moisture.  Tall shrubs on the house side were protecting a Rhododendron lochiae, Boronia ‘Purple Jared’ and had several Epacris, reeds and grasses scrambling through.

Around in the back yard, her daughters cat breeding enterprise took everyone’s interest.  Merele pointed out the large Eremophila alternifolia cross (large purple flower) which was overtaking plants all around – Grevillea juncifolia was flowering below and Eucalypt tetraptera reaching up.  Further along was a E. albopurpurea, cream flowered, rather than the expected purple.  Pimela nivea was doing well below and amongst the great variety of Merele’s planting, a showy red Grevillea at the end of the track had everyone oohing and aahhing.  Indeed a beautiful garden with a host of genera and fascinating stories from Merele with each plant along the way.

Merele inspired us all as she spoke so thoughtfully about the characteristics of the plants and how she decides on placement and combinations.

Report by Peter Smith and Joanne Cairns

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Flower Table September 2018

Another great selection of flowers brought to our September meeting from members’ gardens – in Early Spring.  Some of the more unusual ones this month were Dryandra formosa, Asterolasia hexapetala, and Lissanthe strigosa, with lots of grevilleas and eremophilas flowering this month.

Thanks to Ben Eaton and Rob Dunlop for images.

Click on an image, and scroll through via the arrows. You may see extra information at the bottom of each image.

Autumn Plant Sale, Saturday 28th April 2018

This year the weather was kind to us, with a great turnout of visitors. Of course, being all indoors means we are much more comfortable than if outdoors under any weather, as in some previous years.

Our Yarra Yarra plant stall had a few new additions this year, some plants from our own propagation group, plants from Chris Fletcher (Maroondah member), and a large number of ferns from Fernacres. The latter was a bit of a test to see whether there was much interest in them, and judging by sales, there certainly is. We will have them again at our Expo in September.  All other growers’ stalls seem to have been very busy all day too, making the day a great success with a huge variety of native and indigenous plants available.

Books were again popular. It is a bonus to have the EFTPOS facility for this, and the Bendigo Bank EFTPOS facility also for our plant sales.  It is good some of the other growers’ stalls now have EFTPOS available too.

Another bonus is the eight new members who took advantage of the APS Victoria discount on the 1st year of membership to join our group.  We hope they can make the most of their membership, coming to our meetings, garden visits or other activities that interest them.

Thanks again to all the willing helpers on the day, transporting equipment from three different locations, setting up, manning all the stalls, door, etc, helping the visitors find their plants, packing up, and cleaning up at the end of a very successful day. We couldn’t do it without you all contributing.  I hope you all had as much fun working together on the day, as I did!

Report by Jill Lulham

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Country Gardens – A day outing in October 2017

A great day organized by Sheila to two very different gardens, in Seymour and Longwood, past Avenal.  The weather was warm and sunny and enjoyed by about 25 members, including some new members.  It was just over an hour’s drive up the Hume to Seymour, and Longwood was about half an hour further on.

Clarice’s lovely garden in Seymour was in the grounds of a large Victorian house on a normal size house block.  Clarice gave us a lovely welcome and description of how the garden evolved with her love of native plants and the local mix of manure that she uses so successfully.

It was a mature mixed garden with paths leading around the house enveloped by mature shrubs and interesting artifacts to find amongst the plants.  Small birds flitted around the shrubs above our heads.

Clarice took over the adjacent block and extended her native palate with a border of well-developed hakeas and eucalypts, accessible by winding paths.  The inner section was a lovely amalgamation of medium and low native shrubs and perennials, many in flower.  This area was also enhanced with interesting relics used as tubs or garden furniture which will be seen in the photographs.

Using Sheila’s tips, we found our way to Longwood and the large property belonging to Val and Frank.  The large elevated house and main part of the garden are about 8 years old.  We all sat on the balcony eating lunch and marveling at the wonderful long view of the ranges to the north, and the short view looking into the canopy of the trees and down on the garden. It was wonderful watching the honey eaters (including the Scarlet Honeyeaters) flitting through the foliage and visiting the abundant flowers with their nectar supply.

After lunch and Val’s talk, she led us on a walk around the meandering paths amongst the shrubbery which was taller than head height and very healthy.  There were many lovely spots to sit and enjoy the birds.  Something to find around every bend.  So much effort has gone into choice of plants, propagating, soil improvement, planting out section by section and adding water features and gabion walls.

Val says the garden is a work in progress as it’s huge and easier to complete a section before expanding further.  In addition there is a lovely covered orchard and veggie patch plus strawberries galore on vertical poles.  What a dynamic and energetic couple with a wonderful vision which they have skillfully put into practice.

Report by Joanne Cairns

Images: Jill Lulham

Seymour Garden

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Longwood Garden

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