What I love about visiting other parts of Australia (and the world) is looking at gardens that always reflect the people and their place in the world. My cousin lives in one of the many small towns dotted across the Atherton Tablelands, North Queensland.
Over the years, with the help of some gardening friends, Theresa has created a cool, tranquil garden full of birdsong.
Many birds visit our garden in Canberra, but there is a difference in quiet country areas….these birds seem to own the garden…here is a Honeyeater with a shrill call louder than that of most big birds.
The many native shrubs and bird baths in this garden attract a wealth of birds…and some curious onlookers!!
This handsome fellow has the unfortunate name of Drongo (an old Australian slang word for fool or idiot)….this bird is anything but….it is an amazing bird with a great story, …so more on that in another post.
This garden has three sections, or garden rooms, each flowing from one to the other. The first ‘room’ opens onto a colourful space designed for quiet and contemplation.
Through the archway the next room has a long stretch of lawn, with wide borders for herbs and vegetables, and some lovely native plants, the Bottlebrush and the White Penda.
We were there in the winter, and Theresa had Italian parsley, ordinary parsley, 3 kinds of thyme, mint, basil, chillis, rosemary, spring onions, Italian spinach, tomatoes, passionfruit and pineapple…and hibernating is tumeric and ginger.
As we had just arrived from the frozen south, (Canberra) what a joy to be able to walk into the garden every day and pick fresh vegetables and herbs!
Theresa’s attention to detail makes this a lovely garden to sit in quietly, or go back to and discover new small surprises in out of the way places.
The third part of the garden has native plants and a wonderfully scented Gardenia beside the garden bench. It looks very healthy compared to the ones we have in our garden, I feel I should apologise to all Gardenias growing in Canberra, the cold winters do not suit them at all!
This garden’s design and planting has been a labour of love over many years. It has survived the vagaries of North Queensland weather, rain hail, the tail end of cyclones and sunshine! Today this calm, lush garden, with cool verandas and continual birdsong, welcomes friends and family at any time of the year.