With the appointment of our Head Gardener and a new Horticulturist, we're pleased to report that there's a lot of progress happening in the gardens. We will introduce our new garden staff in the next newsletter.
New plants have arrived and are ready to go in the ground! There are three areas of focus being the perennial plants near the gates, hedging along the boundary of the Pinetum and coastal plants to echo the planting along the Esplanade. Many plantings will be fenced with security to ensure they can establish without disruption.
New labels for our significant trees and plants will be appearing (more details below). When the plantings and labeling are finished, there are plans to conduct garden tours for interested Friends and members of the public when safe to do so.
Visitors to the Gardens can expect to see plant labels going into the ground in the coming weeks. The labels will be around the pond, in the main path and on the open air bandstand. Tree labels throughout the gardens will be installed in September. More soon!
A big thank you to Loraine Callow, Program Development Officer, for bringing the labelling project into fruition!
There is much shredding of pine cones going on in the Gardens! The big Canary Island, Pinus canariensis near the office and machinery shed is a favourite snack bar at the moment as well as the Pinus halepensis and Pinus Pineacea in the Pinetum. Read more about our visitors here.
(Photo courtesy: Ian Rae)
Garden treasures are not always about plants but the people who worked and cared for the gardens in the past. Below is a photograph taken in 1912 of curator, Bill Crowe (right) with Harry Stitt with their prize roses. (Photo courtesy: Eileen Schelleman and Carl Tracey). Click on the time portal to learn more about the influence that Bill Crowe had upon the design and upkeep of our gardens.
Thank you to Jill Hocking who researched this article as part of her work with the Trove Team. If you'd like to join in and help correct articles about the gardens in the National Library digitised collection (Trove) contact Loraine.
The Alfred Clark Statue
This year the Alfred Thomas Clark statue celebrates 130 years of watching over the Williamstown Botanic Gardens. Surrounded by mature Moreton Bay figs (Ficus macrophylla) and situated in the centre of the gardens, the statue carved in Carrara marble by Enrico Lucchinelli, was unveiled at a public ceremony on Saturday 25th July, 1891 in front of a crowd of 300 people. The event was widely reported in papers of the day noting that Mr Clark was a well-respected businessman and politician.
The work was sculpted in Italy from a photograph and funded through public subscription.
Mr Clark (1845-1888) served as the representative for Williamstown in the Legislative Assembly of Victoria from 1871 to 1887 and founded the Williamstown Advertiser newspaper in 1874. Alfred T Clark died in 1888 at sea aboard R.M.S Oceana, near Colombo on his way to England.
The statue was restored by an expert conservator in 2007 to repair and replace parts of the statue that incurred damage over the years and the surrounding fence was reinstated using photographic evidence and helped by the discovery of the location of remnants of the original fence posts still in the soil.
2021/2022 Membership Fees
A gentle reminder that your membership fees are now due.
You can pay with direct debit (please place your surname in the description) or at our AGM.
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