A writer sharing travels, experiences, a love of festivals & events. Life is a journey and I hope to inspire others. Visit my blog at https://www.travelwithirenke.blogspot.com
Published September 12th 2020
I'm on a mission this spring to see as many gardens as possible, not only for the beautiful blooms but for the serenity and exercise they provide. I'm also looking for something unique and, to this end, Perfick caught my attention online with something you don't normally see in a garden in country New South Wales – a medieval tower.
The medieval tower is the ultimate man cave at this garden
Castles and towers exude olde worlde charm and for Perfick owner, John Bryant, inspiration for his Bilpin tower came from a garden crawl through Europe with his wife Annette in the early 2000s. With no experience in building at all, he produced a marvel that is 4m in diameter and 15m tall with 3 levels. It looks like sandstone but has been constructed from a locally invented building material called Timbercrete. Taking two years to complete, it is a great addition to the garden, adding to the elegance of the property.
Whilst it looks great from the outside, the inside is just as interesting with a spiral staircase and paraphernalia hanging from the walls depicting John's history and love of motorcycles, along with a sculpted blue heeler he made for the back of his ute. It barks when he reverses and the eyes light up when he brakes.
This tower is so cool and is the ultimate man cave. On the top level, there is a swinging chair with views out to the garden. It is here John meditates and ponders the meaning of life. He has penned several books, including Money, Sex & Eternal Life (available through Vivid Publishing), Great Australian Ute Stories (get it on Amazon) that's hilarious and heart-warming, and Great Australian Motorcycle Stories (selling on eBay).
The 25-acre property has many wonderful areas to wander around in and features a water fountain beside the tower, cherry and crabapple-lined driveways, a walled fruit and veggie kitchen garden that's also home to hens, a large 3-acre lake around the home that's stocked with fish (silver perch), a bridge made from an old railway flatcar and statues in a bush garden overlooking a billabong.
Hundreds of trees and shrubs burst into colour over spring and you can expect to see azaleas, rhododendrons, camellias, wisteria, magnolias (including a yellow-flowered one), roses, daisies, tiny daffodils, hibiscus, lilacs, lavender, a snowball tree, a weeping cherry tree and many other beauties.
The owners are more than happy to share their plant knowledge and passion for their garden with you and this was certainly helpful as this garden has many surprises and interesting plants I could not name.
Wandering through this serene garden makes for a 'Perfick' escape from the city
Privately-owned, the garden is open in autumn and spring on select dates. Upcoming open days are 19-20Sept and 26-27Sept (2020), from 11am-4pm. Entry is $10 per adult, with under 18's free. Don't miss out on this feast for the eyes. It's the 'Perfick' escape from the city, being a lovely 90-minute drive from Sydney along the Bells Line of Road to Bilpin.
See below for address, contact details, etc.
P.S. If you're a garden lover and want to receive email alerts on open gardens (many don't have their own website) across Australia, then subscribe at www.myopengarden.com.au.