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Peace Haven Botanic Park, Highfields

Home > Toowoomba > Family | Festivals | Gardens | Parks
by Rachel Timmins (subscribe)
I am a chief writer for Weekend Notes, a copywriter, published poet and Editor of poetry magazine ‘Fruit Salad’ (on hold). I also write children's fiction and inspirational pieces.
Published September 5th 2019
400 Species of Australian Native Trees
Peace Haven Botanic Park Stan Kuhl sculpture
Peace Haven Botanic Park entrance sports a contemporary sculpture of its benefactor Stan Kuhl.

Peace Haven Botanic Park is heaven for lovers of gardens, trees, birds and family. Around 400 species of native trees and plants are a delightful feast for the eyes.

A leisurely stroll through the gardens in the fresh air is just what the weary traveller needs. There's something special about Australian native trees that reminds one of a childhood sans stress. Aromas exude from the eucalypts, birds wheel and call exuberantly and you'll see species of trees you've probably never seen before.


Themes organise the plantings of Peace Haven:

Kuhl Woodland - mature eucalypts
Brachychiton Garden - eg kurrajongs, lacebark, bottle trees
Dinosaur Garden - araucaria species, eg Wollemi pine
Wildlife Garden - attracting bird and insect life
Sclerophyll Woodland - dry sclerophyll woodland plants
Rainforest Area - regional species and other rainforest varieties
Dry Rainforest Area - of the Darling Downs
Exotic Deciduous Garden - exotic, flowering deciduous trees
Island Garden - native cultivar species
Wetland Area - native plants, eg casuarinas, melaleucas, grevilleas
Western Downs Garden - eg acacias, dry rainforest plants
She-Oak & Entrance Gardens - natives and exotics
Kuhl Dairy Garden - natives and exotics, mostly grevilleas
Kuhl Fence - eg native climbers, hibiscus, dianellas
Peace Compass - memorialising Stan Kuhl's vision for world peace

Wildlife is purported to frequent the park. Birds visible on my visit: rainbow lorikeets, little corellas, galahs, maned geese, Indian mynas, swallows and others including waterfowl.

Waratah tree Peace Haven Botanic Park
Alloxylon pinnatum or waratah tree.

Kangaroo Paw flowering shrubs Peace Haven Park
Stunning floral shrubs including Kangaroo Paw.

Some of the hundreds of labelled plantings also include:

Fire brand
Native daphne
Bungalow palm
Firewheel tree
Wild quince
Small-leaved tamarind
Hill's weeping fig
Burdekin plum

silver senna billy wings Peace Haven Botanic Park
Left to right: silver senna and billy wings


A contemporary sculpture of Stan Kuhl welcomes the visitor. Giant frogs, ants and footpath friezes are some of the other artistic surprises. The Stump in Time is a tree poem dedicated to a blackbutt hardwood tree that is now only a massive, but well preserved, stump. Hewn down in 2005 for safety reasons, the stump's rings are marked for the years of its life, which began in 1780. The main events that occurred during its lifetime are outlined on a plaque. It was 70 metres tall, but don't despair of its demise, there are even older trees in the park.

Stump in Time tree poem
The Stump in Time tree poem fascinates with its size and the history of its timeline.

Rotunda, Water Features, Lawns

With two expansive lawns and a unique play area, there are lots of family options to keep the kids happy while the gardeners drink in the Australian trees and shrubs. For me, the most fun thing in the playground would be the faux fossil of a T Rex 'buried' in the sand. A lake and jetty provide an opportunity to feed the waterfowl. Please feed in only small amounts, things like chopped lettuce, grapes cut in half, oats and soft peas or corn. Other water features dot the park. A rotunda overlooks a panoramic view towards the Bunya Mountains.

Peace Haven Botanic Park rotunda and view
The rotunda provides a panoramic view towards the Bunya Mountains.

water feature Peace Haven Botanic Park
One of the refreshing water features of the park.

Stan Kuhl founder Peace Haven Botanic Park
Stan Kuhl, who began Peace Haven Botanic Park.
Stan Kuhl

Stan Kuhl, a successful farmer of Highfields, donated 4.7 hectares plus $100,000 to provide a peaceful and beautiful place for the Highfields community. The Crows Nest Council developed the first stage of the parklands.

floral garden Peace Haven Botanic Park
Colourful floral garden near the buildings at the entrance.

Enjoy a picnic lunch making use of the undercover gas barbeques, lawn and picnic tables. The toilets are near the Old Dairy. There is ample parking at the entrance and a rear entrance off Jack St. There will be no additional floral display for the Carnival of Flowers, but there is a floral garden near the buildings. Portions of land are still to be developed.


If you want to visit Peace Haven's nursery and perhaps buy some plants, the hours of operation are Thurs 9am -12:30pm and Sat 9am - 1pm.

Music in the Park

Coming up for the park is the Music in the Park festival. The first act on Sunday, 8 September 2019, is the Victoria Q Duo performing ballads and hard rock, spanning six decades of music. See the website for more upcoming acts and details.

Peace Haven Botanic Park is situated at 56 Kuhl's Road, Highfields, 15 mins from Toowoomba. A must-see for visitors to the Carnival of Flowers. It's Highfields' best kept secret.

Peace Haven Botanic Park wattle
Left to right: a fringed wattle and a flourishing, prehistoric Wollemi pine.
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Why? Family fun, Australian native trees, plants, wildlife.
When: Any time. Nurser times: Thur 9am - 12:30pm & Sat 9am - 1pm
Phone: 7 4688 6611
Where: Highfields, Queensland
Cost: Free
Your Comment
Toowoomba seems a wonderful place for garden lovers.
by Gayle Beveridge (score: 3|8224) 688 days ago
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