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News from the Moble Garden – Goondiwindi Greys

November 9, 2020
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No news is good news, so you may be sure that all has been trundling along well here since we last chatted. As I sit at my desk to write this morning, the Toyota just pulled in with what I am hoping is a trailer load of much anticipated cattle yard soil for a new garden bed. Filling in the filler.

I have just yesterday re-aligned a rock wall on the front lawn to encompass an area under the Cadagi tree where no lawn grew and was always a fiddly corner for mowing anyway. The ground there is cement hard with tree roots and what is not a root is a cobweb of main line poly pipes; years of mending unwanted fountain displays testament to the many attempts of growing something there. A garden fork hazard region for sure.

My solution will be to fill behind the new wall with the muchanticipated soil and plant, carefully sans garden fork, for a cool, green corner. Perhaps if I were plotting this in March, I would be thinking of autumn colour and bulbs, which I may well call upon to fill in with later. However, I am certain you will agree that November demands green with a cooling sheen of gloss. Give me a summer with every shade of green and I will show you a happy gardener.

Talking about happy gardeners, I was lucky enough to visit old friends in Goondiwindi this week, where I was not only blown away by the beautiful gardens and overall Goondi-Green but also fortunate enough to meet some happy Goondi gardeners.

Now these old friends were, until quite recently, happily ensconced on the Bulloo River where they spent almost forty years riding the highs and lows of the Bulloo tides. No matter the challenges, there was always an occasion to share some Bollinger on the Bulloo, so we all knew wherever they retired to would not only need a decent river, but one starting with a letter for a decent champagne. Thankfully for us, they are now to be found in Goondiwindi where they are planning to become river rats again drinking Moet on the Macintyre.

As part of the afternoon’s entertainment, I was collected by the force that is Mrs. Glorious and taken on a grand tour of this delightful and impressive country town. Goondiwindi is, as mentioned, nestled on a river, and fortunately has good water available and no doubt some handy river flat soil. However, this in itself does not deliver the overwhelming success this community has with its private gardens and public landscaping. It would be difficult to not be swept away with the green enthusiasm this town embraces and the vision and planning behind it is to be commended.

I believe it is the gold standard of a district when the oldies(the other Goondiwindi Greys) choose to retire to their local town, adding layers of wisdom and worth into the fabric of its society. Another gold standard is the invitation to come inside for a glass of wine when spotted admiring a garden from the street, so another big tick there as well. From a planting perspective, Goondiwindi appears to be far enough south and not too far north to ensure a climate that embraces a wide range of trees and shrubs; whilst I appreciate the challenges of gardening with heat and drought, the district reflects thoughtful and inspired plantings from a wide climatic range. 

I loved how the gardens flow onto the street verge and thegenius of the beautiful river walk, inviting in and sharing with the surrounding landscape rather than blocking everything outbehind a hot tin fence. The fact that Goondiwindi hasBernadine at Jenny Wren’s nursery to call on would be another big tick from me as well; her knowledge, kindness and generosity travels well beyond that shire thankfully, so we may all benefit from her wisdom.

I see I have managed to promote Goondiwindi almost as much as Mrs. Glorious did, her enthusiasm must be contagious. I am so thankful to have spent such an enjoyable afternoon on a guided Goondiwindi garden tour and shall be returning next year with some Quilpie gardeners. As Mrs. Glorious pointed out, there is never a bad time of year to see the gardens in Goondiwindi. Or drink champagne beside a river with old friends,

The Moble Gardener