Condowie ‘Blackwood’ Open Garden Visit 15-9-12


Visited an Open Garden at Condowie near Blyth owned by John and Helen Ashby. We went after closing the shop at 12 noon and it took about an hour to get there. Was a relaxing drive on a beautiful and calm day.

Unfortunately the garden was underdeveloped and naive. It had eight gardens supposedly put together with the owners’ grandchildren but it looked like they were thrown together the day before with just a few basic artefacts plonked around. Not very impressive but the Red Cross got the proceeds so all in a good cause.

The official intro from the garden flyer says the following:

The garden has always been a pleasure, a challenge and a forever-changing experience, developed in an area of 350mm rainfall.

Recycling and waterwise vegetation have always been very important. All water used in our home is recycled via an R.I (?) system and sprinklers around the perimeter of the Northern garden. The bark chips used are from the tops of the pine trees at the west side of the garden, cut to lessen the fire risk. The soil has been improved with tons of manure from our cattle feedlot and straw residue from our pea crops. The presence of worms is now indicating the health of the soil.

Hundreds of natives, predominantly eremphilas, and succulents have been planted in the outer garden areas. The cottage garden that surrounds our home has irises, roses, bulbs, salvias, lavender, herbs, petunias, stocks and natives.

The reason for entering the Open Gardens Australia was to share with you the gardens of our eight grandchildren…

The best spot was the most established section with the property name, see photo below.

The sign garden ‘Blackwood’. The most forward plot in the whole garden.

Blackwood Sign Garden from the house side.

Blackwood Sign Garden looking toward the car shed.

View of Blackwood Garden sign from the car shed entrance.





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