Archive for the ‘Central Victoria’ Category

Floral Forest Edge
November 18, 2020

Forest Edge was the second garden I visited during ‘Cup Week’. Forest Edge and Mica Grange are my favourite open gardens to visit and I was very lucky they were open during this year of COVID-19 restrictions.

Forest Edge, in spring, is all about flowers –

 – which is great from my point of view as I love flower gardens.

Forest Edge has special significance for me because I associate the garden with my Auntie Anne who also loved this garden.

I am thrilled when I am able to photograph flowers with their insect admirers.

At Forest Edge good use is made of succulents and……

……there is a large, productive garden.

There are plenty of garden art chooks and ducks as well as the real thing.

Mica Grange during COVID-19
November 8, 2020

In this year when we have not been  able to attend events since March, I was delighted – ecstatic – to learn that five gardens were open during ‘Cup Week’.  Yes, the Melbourne Cup and the other spring carnival races ran but in empty race courses. Without the crowds, I struggle to see the point.

The Festival of Gardens had been cancelled but five property owners put up their hands to share their gardens with regional garden enthusiasts hungry for their fix of garden delights.

I was very happy to visit my two favourite gardens – Mica Grange and Forest Edge.

Mica Grange was pretty as a picture on Sunday, 1 November.

There weren’t as many sculptures as in previous years but there was garden art aplenty.

These would have to be among the last blossom trees to flower this spring.

I was very happy to capture the blossoms whilst they were still at their showy best.

 

Below the blossom trees, a dog watches over its flock.

I particularly admired these magpie sculptures.

This hare also had at least one admirer. I saw it being carried off by its new owner.

In the background, you can see the timber ‘stepping stones’ which are a new feature in the garden.

I watched with amusement as children and adults tested their balancing skills.

These roses are a joy.

Finally, a photograph of a rose being mobbed by bees.

I am very grateful to Bede and Mary for opening their garden again this year. I am also grateful to their team of assistants who attend to the myriad of tasks which makes the opening possible.

The garden is open each weekend until 29 November.

 

 

Elphinstone Cemetery
September 30, 2020

Tim who keeps my aging Apple desktop computer running, lives in Elphinstone, one of the small settlements which dot this region. Unlike Castlemaine with its gold rush history, Elphinstone has been a farming and orcharding district.

Yesterday, Katie and I were returning to Elphinstone via a backroad when we happened upon the local cemetery. We had time to explore and neither Katie or I want a good cemetery to go to waste.

Whilst I wandered about admiring the various features the cemetery has to offer, Katie went off sniffing and poking about in the hope there may be rabbits.

Grave sites have interesting decorative features.

Many combine decorative features with mosses and lichen.

I had heard of the practice, in times past, of parents giving the same name of a child who has died to another of their children.

This was the first time I had seen evidence of the practice. Patrick Lawrence died as a baby and his brother of the same name died as a toddler.

There are Finnings aplenty in the cemetery.

A more modern family tree.

Pretty in Pink – Spring 2020
September 3, 2020

Today, I immersed myself in pink blossom bliss.

This row of pink blossom trees line the edge of a playing field near the Botanical Gardens.

I was fortunate to be able to photograph the blossom against a bright blue sky with puffy, white clouds. By early this afternoon, dark clouds rolled in with the approach of a cold front.

I enjoyed the challenge of photographing both blossom and lichen.

The petals of these flowers will soon fall as the new, red leaves emerge.

Spring 2020 – Castlemaine
August 30, 2020

We are within days of the official start of spring. Because of our warmer July weather, spring has started early. Castlemaine is bedecked with blossom and the bush is blooming with early wildflowers.

Because of the corona pandemic, public events and festivals will not be happening this year – 2020, the year fun was cancelled.

Regional Victoria still has stage 3 restrictions – note: I am soooo grateful I am not in Melbourne with stage 4 restrictions. I am also grateful there are no active cases of corona virus in the Shire of Mount Alexander at present.

There will be no open gardens this spring so I am challenged to step up and observe what is on my doorstep.

This tree is growing outside my neighbour’s property. Right now, the blossoms are at their peak.

Gazanias add a splash of colour.

Blossom Heaven!

Riverside Sculptures, Kyneton
August 19, 2020

On either side of the road, in parkland as you enter Kyneton from the north, is a collection of sculptures on permanent display.

As you can see, the sculptures are well labelled. I photographed the sculptures I liked best.

Lichen growing on bluestone – a winning combination.

 

Daffodils in Kyneton usually means the annual Daffodil and Arts Festival is approaching – sadly cancelled this year due to the corona virus (sigh). I don’t think I will be visiting any open gardens this spring.

 

What would be a bush meeting without ants?

Some of you might spy a green cord hanging from the sculpture – an abandoned dog leash.

This is the sculpture which prompted me to take a closer look at the collection and spend time photographing some of it.

Some people are very creative with items which would normally be discarded as junk.

At My Feet
July 16, 2020

A recent post by Londonsenior sent me scurrying for my archives. Susan’s post documented the pavements and service covers in her district. This inspired me to search out photographs I have taken of things at ground level – those things at my feet – and there were plenty to choose from.

 

 

Rocky beaches provide rich pickings.

 

 

 

 

The shallows of a coastal river in Sydney

 

Leaves………..

 

….twigs……..

……….and berries strew the ground.

Lori, The one above is for you.

Ground hugging plants in the wild…….

………and in the garden.

 

These shadows on a footpath are eye catching.

The ground in Central Victoria provides plenty of reasons for looking down.

 

There are reminders of the gold mining era.

 

 

Massive branches lie broken under the Big Tree in Guildford after a violent storm.

A simple headstone in a goldfields cemetery

I came across this unusual pavement in Port Fairy whilst on holiday.

 

Garden for the Future, Bendigo
July 7, 2020

I am very happy to be posting again after a month’s break. This post marks the end of a series of medical procedures which occupied my time and energy during June. The removal of a kidney stone required three medical procedures whilst cataract surgery meant another two procedures.

I was in Bendigo today for an appointment with my eye surgeon who was checking on the progress of the healing of my eyes.

It was such a gorgeous winter’s day that afterwards, I visited the Garden for the Future, a new public garden which opened in 2018. It is located near the far older Bendigo Botanical gardens.

This being Victoria, it is perfectly possible to have various plants in winter dormancy, budding, flowering and fruiting in the same garden.

Garden beds with bare deciduous trees still have interest because of evergreen under plantings.

Plants have striking foliage as well as colourful flowers.

Japonicas flower early.

The yellow berries on this tree are striking and a great subject for photographs.

A large section of the garden is devoted to Australian native plants. There are wattles flowering at present.

I was fascinated by the roofs of these garden shelters with the lime green shining through the holes.

 

The Mill, Castlemaine
May 27, 2020

The Mill refers to the site of the old Castlemaine Woollen Mill which began operations in 1875. The Castlemaine Woollen Company became a major employer in the town whilst it manufactured woollen products especially blankets. New owners, Victoria Carpets, used the site as part of its carpet manufacturing operations from 1992 until 1996 when all manufacturing ceased after a fire destroyed a major part of the premises.

The site remained abandoned until roughly 10 years ago when a local GP and her farmer husband bought The Mill and began a process of transformation. The Mill is now a place tenanted by makers, small commercial enterprises and retailers. It is a destination for locals and tourists alike.

I took the photographs over a period of months.

 

The iconic chimney was built in 1923.

Beyond the bakery is Oakwood, home of delicious small goods including smoked trout, smoked lamb and pate – no prizes for guessing what I like to buy.

The site has solid brick industrial buildings as well as a collection of sheds like this one.

This is the distinctive face of The Mill.

This mural honours the workers who made the woollen products during The Mill’s manufacturing days.

This was the poster on display at the time of the photograph. The current poster is of a man wearing a horned hat.

This is my favourite piece of wall art. It is located next to Sprout Bakery.

It was a challenge taking the photos without a stand dispensing free doggie poo bags getting in the way.

The former drying shed is now a studio and exhibition space for artists.

There are interesting shapes formed by the metal components of a small gazebo created by an onsite metal fabricator.

These decorate the wall near the cafe.

 

Lastly, photos taken in some of the corners of the site of things which caught my eye.

I visit The Mill to buy fruit and vegetables, bakery products and small goods. I have eaten the icecream made there, dined in the Austrian themed cafe, Das Kaffee Haus, and experienced art exhibitions and events.

Autumn Retrospective
May 20, 2020

It is nearing the end of the autumn months and normally at this time of year I would have published some posts on autumn gardens I had visited. But with the corona virus pandemic, not this year – sigh!

So, I am taking solace in this retrospective.

Whilst I tend to associate autumn with the colours of deciduous trees, other plants also make a splash with colour. These grasses are a feature at Frogmore gardens and nursery near Blackwood.

There is an abundance of fruit and acorns.

Colourful berries are a delight.

Ornamental grapevines strut their stuff.

Belleville in Dunolly has an impressive grapevine tunnel.

These autumn tones adorn Mica Grange – one of my favourite gardens.

Vaughan Springs and……

Castlemaine’s Botanical gardens attract many visitors on fine autumn days.

Last Saturday, the lawns were filled with families (in groups of 10 or less) enjoying the freedom to gather in parks and gardens to soak up the sun. I am sure the children were disappointed the playground is still closed – bad corona virus!

I hope that in spring restrictions will have lifted to the extent that there will be open gardens again.  I am looking forward to exploring new gardens and revisiting favourites.