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Catch the best of the Open Gardens this season
The wet weather disappears, the sun continues to shine, and the first signs of autumn and winter appear. It is also the time that gardens come alive with shady trees, warm glows, bright colours, falling leaves and pretty flowers. If your garden doesn't look like this, yet you want to see one, then why not pop in to someone else's garden and admire their wonderful handiwork from the previous winter and spring. And for the last time ever, Open Gardens Australia have arranged for 10 gardens to be opened on the Sunshine Coast for admiration and inspiration.
Hidden Oasis (14-15 February) 54 White Patch Esplanade, White Patch
Hidden Oasis is a tropical garden featuring heliconias, bromeliads, orchids, crotons and palms thriving in compost-enriched sandy soil. A large authentic Balinese hut takes centrepiece in the back garden with its lush plantings of bamboos, tree ferns, frangipanis, gingers, and cordylines while a large pond trickles through foliage plants in the front garden.
The Lost Gardens (7-8 March) 822 Cedar Creek Rd, Belli Park
Shaded paths in this mature subtropical rainforest lead out to an open paddock where extensive new plantings are rapidly maturing to become a relaxed garden featuring many advanced examples of unusual and rare plants.
The Lost Gardens
Royal Palms (11-12 April) 192 Mons Rd, Buderim
An impressive avenue of Cuban Royal palms leads into a stunning garden showcasing subtropical foliage plants while beneath a rainforest canopy, lawn terraces hold wide borders of plants giving year-round colour and interest. The mature trees and palms also help to protect and shade the bromeliads, bamboos, heliconias, agaves and various grasses.
Kerryville Gardens is a delightful garden alive with the vibrant colour and perfume of gorgeous roses, hibiscus, bromeliads and arbours trimmed with bougainvilleas, dipladenia, antigonon and stephanotis. Various ponds and bridges are edged with willows, dietes and lomandra, while palms and tropical foliage give a tranquil ambience.
Montville Macadamery (25-26 April) 41 Mill Hill Rd, Montville
Surrounding this 1926 former home of noted Queensland novelist Eleanor Dark is a stunning and generous garden of mature semi-tropical plantings, shady poincianas, frangipanis and palms. A purple bougainvillea topiary provides a dramatic set piece, while the rainforest garden meanders along and past a boardwalk.
Steeped in history and sitting beautifully in the rural landscape, this glorious rambling family garden is textured, aromatic, colourful and full of surprises. Several paths weave past mature ornamental shrubs, flowering camellias, pieris, michelias and viburnums.
Williamson Garden (25-26 April) 321 Western Ave, Montville
This well-designed park-like garden features a huge selection of vigorous hardy plants, many of them propagated on site. Beautifully maintained lawns, garden beds, hedges, formal rose garden and orchards accompany avocado trees which provide shelter to lush subtropical plantings, and emphasise the spectacular views of green valleys and the coast.
Lindmar (16-17 May) 130 Blewers Rd, Morayfield
This immaculately presented garden features paths which meander past collections of bromeliads, coleus, durantas and gingers beneath graceful mature palms and eucalypts. The relaxed welcoming ambience incorporates lush green lawns, shady seating areas and raised beds of subtropical and tropical plants.
The lush plantings in this impressive garden are a testament to dedicated soil improvement from composting, mulching, organic fertilizer and foliar feeding. Masses of bromeliads and spathiphyllums thrive beneath tall palms, while agaves, heliconias and gingers sit alongside silky oaks and African tulip trees. Numerous camellias and azaleas round out a colourful and spectacular garden.
Belle Rive (30-31 May) 7 Orme Rd, Buderim
This award-winning garden showcases an extraordinary range of foliage plants that ensures a colourful year-round display. With thousands of bromeliads in breathtaking rainbow shades, a conservatory of orchids, ferns and other shade-lovers, the excess of plantings are overflowing into an adjoining property.
All gardens are open from 10am to 430pm everyday with all gardens having a token entrance fee of $8-$10 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 with effect from 30 June 2015 and hence these will be the last gardens on show – it is time to get in to these top gardens for a piece of history. For further details refer to the Open Gardens Australia website or their facebook page.