At the December Christmas Party, we were privileged to get to know Josh Paynter. A nineteen year old, Josh lives in Lilydale and works at Country Gardeners Nursery in Woori Yallock. The club has awarded Josh with a scholarship towards his Horticultural Studies at the Box Hill Institute, Lilydale Campus. This is an amount of $1300. Josh has an aspiration of becoming involved in turf management. We wish him well with both his studies and his chosen career.
At the club meeting held last Monday, 21 October 2019, a prestigious Royal Horticultural Society Award was presented to long time club member and proliferate winner of ‘display of the show award’, Len Mclean. (Photos courtesy of John Bodin)
One of our members, Pat O’Shaughnessy, will be talking on eucalypts as well as about the history of the redwood plantation in East Warburton. Have you been there and wondered “how come this is here?” Pat will let you know.
Come to the Warburton Golf Club this Monday evening at 7:30pm. If you’re not a member, you are welcome to attend. You just may want to join this active club that is in your local area. Just $10 annual fee.
Phillip Johnson, the well-known and much-admired landscape designer, gave a most entertaining talk on some of his landscaping projects, most involving running water and very large rocks. The high point of his career has been winning the Gold Medal and Best in Show at the 2013 Chelsea Flower Show. The judges’ decision was unanimous. Preparations for his “all-Australian Garden” at Chelsea required 5 trips to the UK for reconnaissance, a team of 12 professionals and 17 volunteers, a pre-build in Scotland, a 2.5 tonne rubber membrane for the pond, and the sourcing of Australian plants from growers all over Europe(e.g. eucalypts grown in Spain especially for the garden). James Merlino MP, the member for Monbulk, has pledged to establish a replica of the winning garden as a public garden in the Yarra Valley.
Phillip has also worked on the Five Thousand Poppies project, in which thousands of people all over Australia have knitted red poppies as a tribute to the men and women who fought in the two world wars. He designed the display of these poppies – more than 250,0090 of them – at the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show in 2015, at Federation Square for Anzac Day 2015, and at the Canberra War Memorial. The poppies have also been displayed at Fromelles in France, and in the grounds of Chelsea Hospital. In all, more than a million poppies have all been made by hand.
In thanks, the President gave Phillip a bottle of pinot and made him an honorary member of the Upper Yarra Valley Garden Club.
Introduction to George Jonkers to run a workshop on Permaculture.
George introduced Permaculture as a farming system adapted to a garden. He outlined his workshop plan which was to divide the audience into 10 groups with different scenarios. These were explained in the information on the tables. Also to be found was the Principles of Permaculture, and paper to design the garden outlined in the scenario.
The main focus on the evening was the group session and George walked around advising groups. The room had a working buzz of noise.
To finish George hoped we had enjoyed the exercise and regretted he did not have sufficient time to go through the Principles more closely as there was a wide range of experience amongst the group. He collected the designs from the groups and it is hoped he might feedback what he thought of these at a future date. Each participant was given a certificate of attendance.
The April Meeting is the Autumn Flower Show and will be judged by the popular/red dot method. If you have never been, do come and enjoy being part of the fun of being a judge.
You are all encouraged to participate and, for those who do, please remember to bring your exhibit/s to the back door (Pro Shop entry). Visitors are most welcome to come and by the end of the night, you may want to become a member yourself.
Anne-Marie Manders spoke on the establishment and operation of Warratina Lavender Farm at Wandin Yallock.
Warratina was established as a lavender farm in 1991, having previously been an orchard.
Two types of lavender are grown: aromatic lavender (Lavandula intermedia), flowering in mid-late summer and used in oils and essences, cosmetics etc; and edible lavender (L. angustifolia, L. dentata), flowering up to the end of November and used in small quantities as a flavouring, mainly Munstead and Edgerton Blue.
Best time for planting is in late May-June, when the ground is wet, or at the end of winter when the danger of frosts has passed. Plants are set 1 metre apart. They grow best in full sun, in well-drained soil to which a little lime is added every 2 years. A little Dynamic Lifter can be used as fertilizer, but relatively poor soil is OK. Very little watering, if any, is required.
Very important: Cut back hard every year after flowering: in late summer (most lavenders) or November (L.dentata), but be sure not to cut into the dry wood, only into the foliage.
After harvesting, the lavender is bunched and dried on ceiling racks for 3 weeks. Some are sold in this condition to wholesale florists interstate; other lavenders are stripped mechanically, sieved to remove sticks and leaves and frozen to kill any insects.
Warratina lavender products are sold at garden shows, markets and other expos. They range from flavoured foods such as honey, shortcake and ice cream to hand creams, shampoos, lavender sachets etc.
Tourism is a very important part of the business and the gardens surrounding the sheds and café have been developed as show gardens. The best time to visit is November – January. Warratina is open every day of the week except Tuesdays.