Peter Morson moved to Blackheath in the Blue Mountains four years ago. Over this time he has worked on restoring his garden to its former glory. In the process, he has been delighted to create his own piece of paradise. Thanks Peter for sharing your garden story with us.
First of all how would you describe your garden? (What do you grow? What is your climate like? )
My garden is diverse having different areas dedicated to different plant types, native, shrubs, trees and bulbs. In particular the Blackheath area is renowned for Rhododendrons and camellias of which I have many types. Climate can be very warm in summer but cooler than the coast, autumn, winter and early spring can be very cold as we had snow around October .
How did you get started in gardening?
My wife and I have always loved gardening but have rented mainly home units until we purchased our home in Blackheath four years ago. It was an established garden but was not maintained for many years, we are slowly getting it to a stage where we can maintain the garden.
What motivates you to get up and garden?
Pure enjoyment to see mother nature at work, the relaxing aspect is paramount ( except when digging , we have a lot of ironstone in the ground ). Seeing the plants establish and their beauty. The bird life here is amazing , the plants attract a large variety , especially the magpies who will follow and stand next to us as soon as I pick up a shovel. At times they are in the diggings having a feed of worms and bugs before I am finished.
What were some of the unexpected hurdles in your garden? How did you deal with them?
The hurdles were, getting the original garden back to its former beauty, three very large pine hedges were overgrown, ivy had taken over, digging out shrubs and trees which were past recovery, damage from snow, high winds and hail as the weather conditions on top of the blue mountains cause a lot of damage.
What were some of the unexpected benefits from gardening?
We thought we knew what to expect but the absolute joy we have when walking or sitting in our garden is far better than we could have asked for. We have solace under a few large trees with a canopy of leaves and a bench seat in summer. We have found neighbours with a like interest and can discuss and enjoy each others garden.
Is there a gardening moment that stands out for you?
There are many, in particular when a plant is not doing so well, and we change its position and and it thrives . We also had many areas where grass would never grow and we have dug out and put in natural hardwood chip paths which has changed the feel of the garden. Its always nice to have a path to somewhere , it can just be a seat.
What has your garden taught you?
PATIENCE…..It is a long term commitment to your garden with wins and losses.
If you were a fruit or vegetable, what would you be?
What tips would you offer first time gardeners?
Think of the long term layout and don’t get caught up in annuals or perennials. Hardy shrubs and bushes to dominate the aspect and then plant the pretty little splashes of colour to suit.
Would you like $50 to spend with us? Why not share your garden story with us – we would love to hear it!
Email us – firstname.lastname@example.org with ‘Garden Stories’ in the subject line and will we send you a list of questions. If you are published on our blog, we will offer you a $50 discount code!