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Open Gardens in Melbourne this Autumn

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by Steve Hudson (subscribe)
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Catch the colors and leaves for the last time
Shorter days, cooler weather, and before we know it, autumn has arrived. Autumn signifies big changes in gardens as trees begin the process of jettisoning the old leaves and preparing themselves for a cold winter. If this isn't your garden, but you want to see a garden behaving like this, then why not drop in to someone else's garden that has been kindly opened as part of Open Gardens Australia.

Open Gardens Australia, for the very last time, have arranged for 14 gardens across greater Melbourne to be open during this coming autumn.



Rockley Road Garden (14-15 March)
32 Rockley Rd, South Yarra

An elegant, green, Italianate garden with massed 'Alba' rugosa roses, hedges of sasanqua camellias, lavender, box and Boston ivy welcomes guests to this garden. Delightful clipped box balls, a soothing fountain, and a collection of potted Japanese maples provide a year-round beautiful garden.

Open Gardens Australia
Rockley Road Garden


The Patch Primary School (14-15 March)
53 Kallista-Emerald Rd, The Patch

A village fete with music, pizzas, coffee and a sausage sizzle complement this sustainable garden that has been designed and implemented by the school's students. Arts and crafts, garden tours, talks, demonstrations, garden workshops and activities for the kids ensure that this visit will take the better part of a full day.

Open Gardens Australia
The Patch Primary School


Albertine (21-22 March)

9 Heather Rd, Gisborne

A stunning young garden alive with the colour and perfume of roses, irises and lavender in box-hedged beds. Beautiful stonework, paving, fountains, two large lily ponds and waterfalls are bordered by copses of silver birches.

Open Gardens Australia
Albertine


Wallbrink Garden (28-29 March)
22 Lang St, Beaumaris

At Beaumaris, we have a sustainable and productive garden created with flair and creativity. Unusual foliage and plant combinations are a key feature of the eye-catching native species, used in the nature strip and the productive back garden, with raised vegetable beds and a chicken coop.

Open Gardens Australia
Wallbrink Garden


Harry's Garden (11-12 April)
10 Hesleden St, Essendon

Designed by Phillip Johnson, this Australian native garden recreates a peaceful bush setting and includes a delightful pond with small waterfalls. Accompanied by live classical music, why not walk along the fern walkway leading to a billabong surrounded by gums, banksias, native wildflowers and murals.

Open Gardens Australia
Harry's Garden


Nonesuch (11-12 April)
150 Hereford Rd, Lilydale

This Lilydale garden features a formal walkway of magnificent copper beeches, standard roses and box hedge pyramids. Beyond the walkway is where mature weeping willows, Japanese maples and various shrubs in their autumn finery shelter creative and eclectic plantings.

Open Gardens Australia
Nonesuch


Garden of Hope (11-12 April)
2 Jura Crt, Park Orchards

A formal, axial design by designer Jacquie Chirgwin is balanced by deep-curved shrubberies and lovely vistas over bushland. Paths wind past prolific plantings of roses, Japanese anemones, grasses, succulents, salvias, geraniums and coleus, with autumn colours on display from maples, golden ashes, and the red berries of dogwoods.

Open Gardens Australia
Garden of Hope


Kristie's Bouquet (11-12 April)
11 Forge Rd, Mount Evelyn

A spacious garden of great diversity, and a focus on sustainable practices, have mature trees sheltering garden beds, featuring an eclectic mix of bird-attracting natives and massed colourful perennials, including over 80 species of salvias.

Open Gardens Australia
Kristie's Bouquet


The Mosaic Garden (18-19 April)
64 Rathmines Rd, Hawthorn

With mosaics flowing across walls, steps and boulders, this unique garden has been recognised internationally for its innovation and artistry. Talks at 11am and 2pm each day will focus on the mosaic sculptures, garden furniture and the water feature.

Open Gardens Australia
The Mosaic Garden


Giufre Garden (18-19 April)
150 Wattletree Rd, Hurstbridge

Giufre Garden highlights how native and indigenous plants can be used to overcome difficult terrain and soil conditions. There are eucalypts, grevilleas, acacias, eremophilas, correas, alyogynes, Geraldton wax, hakeas, banksias, and many massed grasses to complement the dam and the small pond.

Open Gardens Australia
Giufre Garden


Sam Cox's Garden (18-19 April)
12 Lorimer Rd, Wattle Glen

Garden designer Sam Cox's own Australian native garden uses Castlemaine slate paving to link the mudbrick house to the garden and surrounding bushland. A waterhole, edged with boulders and aquatic plants, and fed by a waterway, nestles into the landscape. It is shaded by lemon-scented gums, and surrounded by mass plantings of chrysocephalums, goodenias and correas.

Open Gardens Australia
Sam Cox's Garden


Warrawong (2-3 May)
63 Luck St, Eltham

This steep block has been sensitively developed in a series of broad terraces, allowing views of the young garden from the Alistair Knox house. Gravel paths link garden beds, while bluestone and brick paths link the different levels. Yellow box trees shelter grevilleas, correas, indigenous acacias, cherry ballart, and goodenias.

Open Gardens Australia
Warrawong


Overnewton Castle (2-3 May)
51 Overnewton Rd, Keilor

Boston ivy clings to this Scottish castle while cypresses, an avenue of olives, and a venerable old oak in its autumn glory date from the 1850s. Now restored to its 1920s condition and available for tours, the castle is surrounded by wide lawns and pretty flower beds backed by camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas.

Open Gardens Australia
Overnewton Castle


Tugurium (30-31 May)
8 Centenary Ave, Macedon

This extraordinary garden from Stephen Ryan provides a wonderful opportunity to see the bones of the garden with its textures, structural foliage, deciduous plant framework and pre-winter blooms.

Open Gardens Australia
Tugurium


All gardens are open from 10am to 430pm and have a token entrance fee of $8 to help cover costs. Open Gardens Australia have recently advised that, as a result of rising costs and falling revenues, Open Gardens Australia will cease to exist, effective from 30 June 2015.
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Why? Autumn colors are beautiful
When: March - May 2015
Where: Various places across Melbourne
Cost: $8
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