A gift of garden heralds 150th anniversary

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A gift of garden heralds 150th anniversary

July 15, 2019

Jane Glynn, receptionist at Liscombe House, has had her dream come true: winning a competition that has seen the creation of a stunning communal garden for residents at Leith Park.

The gift of the garden was the concept of Northcote Pottery which last year leveraged a competition that saw the Australian public given the opportunity to win a garden makeover.

“When I heard about it, I knew I had to put in,” Jane said.

“OCAV is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year, and gardens have always been a central feature of our villages. What better gift could there be than one which restores a garden, and gives back to older people who enjoy the chance to potter, plant and get out in nature,” Jane said.

The sensory garden has been designed by horticulturalist and TV personality, Melissa King, with services, products and time volunteered by teams from Northcote Pottery, AMES and The Garden Company.

After four full days, what was a patch of unused grass has been transformed into a garden packed with flowering trees, garden beds brimming with foliage and flowers, wide, easily accessible paths surrounded by garden art and decorative screens that delight the senses.

The garden stands in front of the much-used community centre, the perfect place for residents to gather and potter.

Designer Melissa King said: “The garden is easy to navigate and accessible for everyone to enjoy, and it features wide pathways, and raised planter boxes for easy picking. We have also included a bird bath to entice our feathered friends to visit and bring colour and movement to the garden.”

Jane is now working on future ideas to develop the garden further, and create new, smaller edible gardens throughout the village.

“Working with residents, we have come up with all sorts of possibilities from wicking beds to herb gardens, all of which combine to create tranquil, beautiful spaces where residents and staff can gather together to chat, relax or stimulate their senses – and a place to nurture their love of gardening.”

Pete Zawacki drove to Leith Park twice a week to visit his mother, Helen, until her death a year ago. After she died he wanted to honour her memory and ‘repay’ the kindness staff showed her by volunteering.

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