A & C wanted more time at the DFO today and so J & I dropped them off there on our way to Blackwood, there to see the garden of St Erth, the Digger's Club Garden. It's an hour or so from Melbourne and after you turn off the highway, the drive takes you up and over forested hills. There was a section with tall gum trees showing black trunks all the way to the top and there's a big fire shelter in Blackwood - a little scary. The last turn-off is onto a windy one-lane road that heads back up into the hills with a drop-off on one side and trees all around. The garden is basically at the end of the road and very understated - you wouldn't know you had arrived except for a sign on the little gate.
It was lovely. The main building is a 19th century stone cottage that serves as entrance and shop. Rows of books, garden tools and seeds are stacked alongside the fireplaces and the antique furniture. Carl and Suzy would love this place. The garden has that very clever organised disarray I would love to be able to create. Neat rows of veges were thriving. Espaliered pear and apple in tangential rows. The first of the Spring flowers around the base of figs. Moss growing on gnarly trees. Dry-stone steps and outdoor rooms under trees or in the afternoon sunshine. Tall old-growth trees up the back. I got French shallot bulbs that I have been trying to find for years.
Pizza from the local place was perfect as A & C showed off their day's plunder.