Located in Celia Parade, opposite the Men's Shed, this delightful garden showcases a large range of native trees and plants of Australia. I came across this unexpected treasure recently while on a casual bike ride around the area. The Arboretum is quite obviously a labour of love as there are a number of different garden sections, with plants all clearly labelled and very well organised.
It is interesting to learn that Curtis Park Arboretum has been developed and maintained by volunteers from the Shoalhaven Heads community. The garden was officially opened in April 2011 and now boasts hundreds of plants endemic to eastern and western Australia.
The garden features an attractive formal entry on Celia Parade set amongst the wildflowers and as you enter you will notice the enormous Bangalay Gum directly in front of you. To the left of the formal entry is the Bush Tucker Garden which contains a number of edible plants, usually found from Queensland to the Illawarra, such as native ginger, mulberry and elderberry, Illawarra and Davidsons plum and Midgen berry.
Within the Arboretum there are many little paths to follow and you will find other items of interest along the way including a sundial, bench seating, various sculptures and an information box where you can find an Identification Brochure. There is also a large sign containing information about the birds which visit the arboretum.
A self-guided walk through the garden will take around 30 minutes and, as well as the Identification Brochure provided, there is plenty of signage to advise the gardening novice of the plants they are viewing.
Rubbish bins are provided at the formal entry on Celia Parade and toilets are located at the southern end of the park, adjacent to the preschool.
The Curtis Park Arboretum is a lovely place to visit and a wonderful asset to the community and its dedicated volunteers. Entry is free and it can be viewed seven days a week.