Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Sunday (Maroochydore, Australia)

Sure to Be Delighted; Range Gardens Give Valerie and Gerry Zwart Glimpses of Horticultural Glory

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Sunday (Maroochydore, Australia)

Sure to Be Delighted; Range Gardens Give Valerie and Gerry Zwart Glimpses of Horticultural Glory

Article excerpt

WE'RE certainly in for a treat next weekend, starting with the Open Gardens Australia opening of the Montville Macadamery at 41 Mill Hill Road, Montville, on Saturday and Sunday, between 10am and 4.30pm daily.

Entry is $6pp and under-18 free.

Former South Australians Grant and Marlene Mayfield discovered their retirement home in 2004, falling in love with the 1926 Queenslander on the 20ha property, formerly owned by noted novelist Eleanor Dark in the early 1950s where she wrote her popular book Lantana Lane.

There is much history and diverse parts to the garden visitors can enjoy, so be warned you must allow yourself ample time to do that.

The house had some additions in the early '90s, and the Mayfields completed these by adding extra decks connecting the existing verandas.

Another piece of history is the remains of the former macadamia orchard, and a timber boardwalk constructed in recent years enables excellent viewing of the rainforest on the south side of the property. Take the time to stroll along the gently sloping paths of local river stone, past the giant fig at the halfway mark, down to the forest's edge. It's delightful.

From there, stroll back along the grass path to the driveway, which provides views of the latest well-planned plantings of cordylines, flowering trees and other colourful plants in an area formerly filled with lantanas, sick macadamias and weeds a showing how well some of the areas over-run with invasives can be restored.

Due to the bores that provide water giving out, Grant and Marlene have installed four substantial concrete water tanks, which keep both the house and gardens well-supplied.

The garden contains such beautiful plantings as a mature poinciana, frangipani, palms and tree ferns, while the understorey is filled with colourful foliage and flowering plants, many bulbs, and gingers, NG impatiens, heliconias, azaleas, cottage roses, tibouchinas, potted pandanus and yuccas as well as many more to please the eye, in a variety of garden areas throughout. …

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