This morning I met Sue, my friend and sister of Jan the champion jam maker at Sydney ‘s Royal Botanic Gardens to look at the vertical garden and garden beds that were planted by three horticulturists in six days. More than 18,000 plants were used in the display. The venue is an indoor/outdoor event space called the Calyx in the middle of the Botanic Garden.
The day was perfect but the Calyx had closed the glass roof. I presume it was to control the temperature and humidity though the purpose of the display was to show off winter blooms! The hot and steamy atmosphere was most unpleasant. My more serious complaint was that the ugly shadows of the roof spoilt the photographs of the garden. Oh well, I guess wherever the sun is shinning, there will be shadows. The effect, however, is like someone had drawn a moustache on the Mona Lisa.
Cyprus papyrus rose amid yellow Zantedeschia that looks like Calla Lilies. The stumps look like they were once palm trees.
Cymbidium “Ensan Shining Royale Flame”; now that’s a mouthful for an orchid but I’ve heard sillier names. The Cymbidiums are Australian natives.
Cyclamen in the foreground
A complicated roof throwing complicated shadows. The grey/green fringe on the bottom of the wall is Dichondra argentea “Silver Falls” (we used to call it kidney weeds); above it the deep red line is Alternanthera ficoidea “Red Threads” (I have this in my garden). There are eight different types of Heuchera (from marble to lime, coco, marmalade, melting fire, peach flame, sanguine firefly and palace purple and five of Euphorbia (pinks, cream and white poinsettias). Sedum mexicanum Gold Mound supplied the highlight.
The orchid bed was made up of mostly Oncidiums and Phalaenopsis. The fern around the fountain is Adiantum fragrans (maidenhair).
There was a surprise: a bromeliad like plant (behind Sue) with the purple flowers was actually an epiphyte, Cochliostema odoratissimum.
All the orchids will be sold for $10 each on August 5; all the other plants for a ‘gold coin’ – that is $1 or $2 in Australian currency.
This was taken at 11:41a.m. – go on a cloudy day or perhaps the shadows will move off in the afternoon.