I spent what I thought was an inordinate amount of time in the garden as a child. My mother loved gardens, with a major passion, and if I was ever foolish enough to say I was bored, in 2 seconds flat she had me on some form of garden job. I figured that by the time I was 14, I was ‘gardened out’. So visiting gardens has never been on the top of my to-do list. The odd botanical garden visit in new cities, or walking around a friend’s garden as she has shown me her new Amorphophallus titanum (exactly!). Now that I’m getting involved in veggies, and native food plants, I’ve started having a sneaking interest in plants, for their pragmatic qualities.
However, a friend took me to a couple of her favourite gardens in the Dandenong Ranges just outside Melbourne, and we had a lovely wander though a very formal garden, a wild garden and possibly the most formal of gardens, a bonsai nursery. The beauty of these places, the serenity and relaxation they bring, the appreciation of the work that has gone into them, and gentle refreshing of the soul has made me consider that maybe I should be on the lookout for more open gardens to wander in.
(But please don’t ask me to work in them…)