Visit the mag­nif­i­cent gar­dens of Boat’s End

Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - November Contents -

Close to South Aus­tralia’s far south­ern coast, near the mouth of the Mur­ray River, lies Boat’s End, a re­mark­able gar­den of plants cho­sen for their per­fect fit with the area’s nat­u­ral pat­tern of cool, rainy win­ters fol­lowed by hot and fairly dry sum­mers. It’s a sen­si­ble way to gar­den be­cause if the plants you choose can largely live on the rain­fall you get, you not only save on ap­plied wa­ter, the gar­den you cre­ate will look like it be­longs in the nat­u­ral land­scape of your re­gion. And choos­ing plants adapted to your cli­mate isn’t lim­it­ing be­cause your cli­mate isn’t unique in the world. Many other parts will have a sim­i­lar rain­fall pat­tern to yours, so as well as all your lo­cal na­tive plants, you can add species from other, sim­i­lar cli­mate zones. That’s what was done at Boat’s End, and the beau­ti­ful re­sult speaks for it­self. Af­ter a rainy win­ter, the gar­den is full of flow­ers in spring and early sum­mer. The soil is still moist and the heat is yet to hit. Yel­lows, or­anges and reds dom­i­nate, with spots of pur­ply-blue set in a sea of grey-green fo­liage. The colours blend with those of the dis­tant land­scape –a per­fect part­ner­ship.

2. Gla­di­o­lus carneus with its red-flecked white flow­ers is one of spring’s sur­prises. It pops up in late win­ter, blooms in spring and dies away in sum­mer.

3. The roof of the house

and of each outbuilding drains into a wa­ter tank. But, be­cause much of this wa­ter is needed for the house, there isn’t enough left for gar­den use. In sum­mer, th­ese plants will drop leaves, die back or shrivel to con­serve wa­ter. Re­growth is rapid when cool rain starts fall­ing in au­tumn. A great wa­ter con­ser­va­tion idea for you to copy!

5 Strik­ing suc­cu­lent

Cras­sula ar­borescens stores wa­ter in its thick­ened leaves while its sil­very sur­faces re­flect heat and light away. You’ll find this and other suc­cu­lents are great choices where sum­mers are hot and dry.

6 Com­ple­ment­ing the sur­rounds,

the house’s cladding and trim in sil­ver and blue is a great match for the gar­den’s colour.

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