Wittunga Botanic Garden is one of the three botanic gardens in South Australia. Covering an area of 13 hectares, it is located at Shepherds Hill Road in the suburb of Blackwood.
Wittunga, which means " beside water", was originally the home of Edwin Ashby, who was passionate about Australian flora. The avid gardener would have heard of the Ashby System of watering, developed by Edwin Ashby to care for our native plants. Ashby saw the close relationship of Australia's water-wise plants and the flora of South Africa.
There are trails and walks that visitors can take in the garden. There is one trail called The Wittunga Naming Walk, where one can learn how plants get their names originally, whether scientifically or named after a person, the signs explaining the names are installed beside the plants. There are 24 of these signs along the walk.
There is also a beautiful big lake in the garden with purple swamp hens, wood and black ducks swimming. One can also see birdlife such as the honeyeaters, wattlebirds, rosellas, lorikeets and other parrots.
Facilities in the park include shady and spacious picnic spots, gazebos with tables and benches, toilets and even a wedding site. Paths around the parks are wheelchair and pram friendly. There are, however, a few restrictions including no pets, no BBQ, no alcohol, no sound equipment, no skateboarding or rollerblading, no vehicles, bicycles or scooter riding, no ball or throwing games.
Admission to Wittunga Botanical Garden is free and it is open all year round except on days when the weather is deemed catastrophic. Opening hours are 8.30am to 4.00pm on weekdays and 10.00am to 5.00pm on weekends and public holidays. There is also free parking. For more information on Wittunga Botanic Garden, visit their website.