WORDS: Julianna Rozek, PHOTOS: Julianna and Lambros
On a cold and clear day Horticultured ventured up to Macedon on our first official club outing. We car-pooled from Parkville and Burnley up to the Mount Macedon Trading Post for a cheerful lunch. Just next door is Dicksonia Rare Plants, and we couldn’t help ourselves. Apart from 2000 plants you’ve probably never even heard of, there were strange tools none of us could figure out (does anyone have any suggestions??).
The final destination was Tugurium, the legendary Stephen Ryan’s garden (best known for hosting Gardening Australia, but also being a generally awesome plant dude). The garden was accessible to the public as part of Open Gardens Australia, which has sadly shut down after 27 years. However an Open Gardens Victoria is starting up soon. Long live Open Gardens!
Despite being winter, cold and somewhat dreary, the gardens still had plenty of delight. The green roof provoked lots of comments - it was a DIY attempt on a pitched roof much different from the slick ones at Burnley. Despite some slumping and plant failures, the roof still looked green and is according to Stephen a favourite with design magazines.
We spent a while wandering about the gardens, trying to identify things. There were many noses poked into plants. Stephen gave a short talk describing his gardening philosophies and the development of Tugurium. Twenty-five years ago the garden was a bare, degraded grass-and-Eucalypt block with a hard yellow clay and no topsoil. Stephen imported organic matter and used a crowbar to dig out trenches and planted whatever caught his fancy at the time.
The trip was a great way to get away from the stress of exams (did we mention this was during swotvac?). Garden trips are also much more fun when shared with friends to ponder over plant names.
We are looking at organising more garden trips in the future, so keep an eye on the events page!
Read all about it: MUC Garden and Burnley Student Association share updates on their activities.