Two Gardens

Kevtoberfest #14 The Campbell Rhododendron Gardens and  The Blue Mountains Botanic Garden

With plans to visit two cool climate mountain gardens in springtime, I had visions of daffodils, bluebells and tulips in all their glory. We did see all of those, but both gardens had much more to offer than just displays of spring bulbs.

While rhododendrons are the main feature at the Campbell Rhododendron Gardens in Blackheath, many other plants help to fill the 18.3 hectares of parkland. Gently sloped walking tracks are also lined with camellias and azaleas. These exotic plants blend seamlessly with the existing native bushland.

At the top of the garden, shelter sheds provide quiet picnic areas and lookouts reveal the pretty lake bordered with native ferns and shrubs.

Closer down, the air is filled with the melodic sound of frogs, heard but not seen, and the still water of the lake reflects its lush surroundings.

Spring flowering plants and trees colour every part of the garden.

But it’s the rhododendrons we’ve come to see and, even though we’re a month too early for the main flowering season, many bushes are already laden with blooms.

The Blue Mountains Botanic Garden also features plants from many of the world’s cooler climates. Located 1000 metres above sea level at Mount Tomah, this is the highest botanic garden in Australia.

Meandering paths, some paved with local granite and others grassed, lead through each themed section of the garden. In one area, we marvel at the proteas – some as large as dinner plates. Further on are dozens of grevilleas, each with its own distinctive shape and colour.

We wander through arid gardens overflowing with drought resistant plants,

past the Brunet Meadow filled with bluebells,

along avenues of trees laden with spring blossom.

The flowering trees and shrubs attract native birds including king parrots, satin bower birds and kookaburras.

Waratahs, native to the cooler south-eastern parts of Australia and related to the proteas we saw earlier, bloom in many parts of the garden.

Camellias are native to the mountainous areas of Asia but have long been favoured in Australian gardens. In this region, the cold winter temperatures encourage perfect blooms.

I came to these two spectacular gardens expecting to see spring flowers, and I got exactly that – and more!

Join Jo for more Monday Walks

Becky has lots of #MarchSquares

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55 thoughts on “Two Gardens

  1. Wow, what beautiful gardens in a spectacular setting. I used to have rhododendrons in my garden but sadly my lack of a green thumb killed them. Beautiful photos here Carol.

  2. Absolutely gorgeous. I just love wandering around a goodbotanical garden. I’ve never seen the satin Bower Bird and hadn’t expected it to be so blue. Seeing one building it’s Bower is definitely on my bucket list. Bower birds are so fascinating.

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  4. I had the Blue Mountains garden on my list when I was last in Sydney, but didn’t get there as it was too hot to move some days! Maybe on my next visit I can persuade the son to take me 🙂

    Funny seeing the spring flowers at the same time as ours – I went to a garden yesterday with lots of camellias and daffodils, but sadly none of those magnificent proteas and grevilleas!

  5. What a wonderful post with glorious photos of Spring. It is great to see the proteas which are native to South Africa where I was born. I grew up on a hilltop and we had proteas and aloes (such as you have a photos of too) growing wild all around our house.So much so, that as a child, my mother would pick a bunch of proteas for me to take in to my teacher every now and again.

    So nice to see them again here in your photos. Gorgeous!

    Peta

  6. Sigh. Amazing. I am speechless when seeing Your stunning photos. I started to miss the summer immediately! We have still snow in Helsinki, but someday it…

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  8. I’m so envious when I see this vibrant abundance of flowers of all shapes and colors from the classic daffodils to the exuberant proteas… Back in Paris I’m freezing and we are supposed to be in spring for already 2 weeks… Gorgeous blog and amazing pictures 🙂

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