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The Australian High Commissioner John Dauth AO LVO, officially opens the Australian Garden at Capel Manor

Chelsea Flower Show Gold Medal Winner
Australian Garden Recreated At Capel Manor

Cross an imaginary equator line and see how the Australian Garden at Capel Manor tells the story of the journey of water from Australia’s arid outback eastward through the rivers and gorges to the urbanised east coast of Australia.

This new garden has been built using the very plants and materials which were exhibited at Chelsea.

The original garden, designed by Jim Fogarty, built by Landform and planted with native plants, wowed visitors to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in 2011 where it was announced to the world that the Melbourne Botanic Garden had created a new Cranbourne Garden.

This garden is a recreation of the Chelsea Flower show 2011 Gold Medal winner, created to celebrate the second and final stage of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne’s 18-hectare Australian Garden in Victoria which opened in 2012. Designed by acclaimed Australian landscape designer Jim Fogarty, The Australian Garden gives a snapshot of the diversity of Australia’s flora and offers the chance to see some Australian native plants that are rarely seen outside Australia.

The Australian Garden tells the story of the journey of water from Australia’s arid outback through the rivers and gorges to the urbanised east coast of Australia. Red sand surrounded salt sculptures backed by the sand dune wall evoke the harsh outback, while the rusted steel wall and water cascade depict the inland river gorges of Australia, where water provides life for plants and animals in an otherwise hostile environment. A pebble path depicts inland dry river beds, and a bright, sky-blue pond in the bold shape of a boomerang heralds the first appearance of water and highlights the strong cultural significance of that symbol.

The modern shade pavillion epitomises the populated margins of the continent, with their home gardens and green turf. All plants displayed in The Australian Garden are Australian natives such as the iconic Queensland Bottle Tree (Brachychiton rupestris); several varieties of Grevillea, and the distinctive Firewheel Tree (Stenocarpus sinuatus). The extensive plant list includes two rare and threatened species, seeds of which have previously been sent to the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew as part of the Millennium Seed Bank Project, including:

- Fragrant Saltbush (Rhagodia parabolica)

- Hairy Darling-pea (Swainsona greyana)

For image enquiries please contact the Capel Manor College Photographer