|Eucalyptus regnans- Mountain Ash|
Recently I have been designing a garden for a lady I do cleaning for. She has a property in Healesville in the Yarra Ranges just outside Melbourne. The property gets quite cold in winter with some snow falling in the cold snaps, while in summer is one of those areas prone to bushfire. They are surrounded by huge Mountain Ash or Eucalyptus regnans, so the garden is protected from harsh winds and direct sunlight, although remains shaded for much of the year. In this part of Victoria the soil is delightfully rich and moist with a constant layer of mulch provided by the huge eucs, so its pretty rare for it to dry out.
My client wanted some colour in their garden without removing anything substantial, so my challenge was about finding colour for a cool shaded spot which would blend nicely with the rest of the garden.
In the past the brief has often been about using low maintenance drought tolerant plant, this garden was pretty much the opposite, a delightful change!
|Chaenomeles japonica - Flowering Quince Red form|
|Chaenomeles japonica - Flowering Quince Pink form|
I bought the red one for the customer and a pink one for us. This is a plant which my mother had in our garden at home, she adored japanes flowers, camellias, apple blossom, flowering quince, and a whole bunch of other gorgeous plants but i do remember these. They do produce fruit but have large thorns so beware. they are deciduous but are amongst those plants which flower during Australian winter, if you are in the northern hemisphere they wont flower until spring. However I think you'll have to agree they are quite lovely. They are part of the rosaceae family as are roses, apples, crab apples and many other beautiful and maybe thorny plants. But I think I forgive them their thorns!
I also included a couple of Peonies which are beautiful,hellabores or Winter Rose and some Iris Germanica or bearded iris for later in spring colour. So I think this will definitely add some colour to this lush green spot in the hills.