The Buderim Garden Club Autumn Plant Exhibition, held on the 24th March 2012 was a huge success with visitors and members enjoying the lovely display held in the Buderim War Memorial Hall. After a couple of weeks of heavy rain, a beautiful Autumn day greeted us and a spectacular display was put on in the hall by the various plant societies and groups as well as a wonderful display on the stage by our own design team headed by our Champion exhibitor for 2011, Barbara Harling. Our members contributed some lovely floral art, magnificent potplants from their home gardens and Coralie gave us some lovely cottage garden plants for our usual spectacular floral arrangements. Many people commented on the wonderful Cordilines on display as well. On the back white wall we showed continuous photos of our Armidale trip, trips to The Chelsea Flowers Shows, The Eden Project, Scottish Gardens, Edna Walling Memorial Garden, Members gardens, our September 2011 Garden Festival and Open gardens, all photo taken by Rita, Pat and Paul. One of Barbara's plants that got a lot of interest was the Carphalea or Flaming Beauty Plant.(sold as) The Maleny Botanic Gardens had one on display.
Carphalea or Flaming Beauty
Another wonderful exhibit in the hall was the exibition of sculptural ceramics by Ellen Appleby. Ellen has her work on display at the Harbourside Gallery, Noosa Marina from 10am to 4pm daily. She has a special Meet the Artist wine and cheese at 2pm on Saturday 28th Aoruk at the Harbourside Gallery, Noosa Marina.
The Bonsai, Orchid and Hibiscus displays were also special and more photos can be seen on our photo page. Also in the hall were lovely watercolour paintings by the Botanical artists and the Maleny Watercolour group as well as some lovely ceramic displays. The Maroochy Bushland Botanic Gardens and the Society for growing Australian Plants and the Foliage Plant society also had lovely displays.
The members of the Hibiscus Society with their display
On the lawn area the Maleny Botanic Gardens, Sunshine Coast Council and various growers, including our member, Ken, who displayed his bees and sold his honey made a lovely display in the Autumn sunshine.
Specialist Anthurium Grower from Beerwah
Many thanks to Tony and Ganaa for organising the event, Barbara Harling for organising the stage decor and Rita and Helen for organising the photo display in the foyer. Many of our members helped in so many ways over the weekend and a huge thank you to all of those people who contributed in so many ways. We would also like to thank the CWA Buderim Branch for providing lovely refreshments on the verandah.
Barbara and Pat who decorated the stage The Maleny Botanic Gardens Display
The lovely Arts and Ecology Centre at the Maroochy Bushland Botanical Garden was the venue for our first of three events by Professor Wong as part of the Sister Cities program. Finding the Maroochy Bushland Gardens was the first hurdle for us as we could not get it on our GPS but relied on signs from Forest Glen (these are clearly marked).
Professor Wong is a young, cheery chap, whose English was clear and he presented his talk aided by lovely photos from his home in Xiamen, China.
He explained the Chinese approach to landscape gardens, both Palace Gardens, public spaces and private gardens. His main points were
* Usually thinking about mountain, water and earth.
* follows traditional Chinese culture
* The Ying and Yang of garden design
* Use of walls (from the Great Wall, to low walls in private gardens)
* Even the smallest urban garden can be a place of reflection, tranquility and peace
* Flowers are a perfect feature in the perfect Chinese Garden, especially if they are perfumed. (See the visual, hear the sounds, smell the perfumes, the feel the textures - all the senses.
* He has equal girls and boys in his classes (Ying and Yang - perfectly balanced
* Architecture and garden in close harmony with each other
* Use of white buildings with shadows of trees making a reflection on them and thus creating a perfect picture.
* The circular spaces in gardens depicting the moon.
* The sound of gardens eg Bamboo in the wind, birds chirping, cicardas making sounds in the evening, sound of water, all of this balanced with the silence at other times.
* Places to sit and reflect and look at the beauty of the garden
* ever changing gardens - plants are never stationary - plants change with the seasons as new growth appears
* focused on the beauty of some small courtyard gardens in urban China and beauty that can be created in a small space.
Afternoon tea was delicious and thank you to the members of the CWA who catered for the event.
As we left the venue with anticipation of the next two events we heard the wind in the lovely trees at the Arts and Ecology Centre and noted the vertical wall planted with ferns at the entrance, which would be ideal in a small courtyard garden.
Another great session with Professor Wong. Glad to see some of our wonderful Garden Club members at this workshop, as well as professional landscape designers from the Sunshine Coast Community.
Tony welcomed Sam and he gave a short talk to catch up with people who might have missed the previous session.
We then got down to the business of designing our own Chinese Garden and Sam gave us feedback as to the effectiveness and changes he would make, which were most helpful. Looking forward to the final session on Wednesday where we will learn to utilise Australian Natives in our design.
Our final workshop was a combination of all we have learnt so far and how we can incorporate Australia Native species into our garden. I was left reflecting on how little I know of native species. I have been looking up places on the internet and books that might help in choosing plants for our wet conditions and rich soil up here on top of the mountain in Buderim. Some of the books are shown below and we might include the Society for Growing Australian Plants (Qld) on our website. We can always look in the Edna Walling Memorial Garden for ideas on what does well here. Perhaps we can chose a native holly or a lovely Grevillia.
Professor Sam visited our garden in Buderim just before he returned to Xiamen, China and was delighted with our garden, even though it was pouring rain! He said it was a paradise and I guess he would think that if he visited many more lovely Sunshine Coast gardens if he had had more time. He had enjoyed his visit with us and we thanked him for bringing his culture to us, enlightening us on the wonderful aspects of classical Chinese design in gardens and how important it is to plan the layout of your garden to get optimum pleasure from all your senses as you sit, reflect, relax, and just enjoy the beauty around you.
Thank you to the Sister Cities Association and Tony for organising the visit. Our lives have become more enhanced from the experience and we have met more gardening friends on the Sunshine Coast.