From the moment you arrive at Roseanne and Lance’s home your eyes are drawn to the neat and visually appealing features of the property. A picket fence salvaged from a country farm serves as a great border to their property. Raised garden beds expertly put together by Lance feature a variety of gardenias, native iris, ornamental pears, birds of paradise, climbing geraniums and native trees. Variegated yucca cuttings were replanted after dipping them in honey to encourage good growth. A bird breeding box has been strategically placed to encourage the wildlife to make this garden their home.
A few years ago Roseanne’s neighbour advised her that if she was watering her plants, she might as well water a plant that will give her something in return. Now the back garden contains a variety of fruiting trees including a miniature persimmon, nectarine and apple trees. Spider plants, succulents, staghorns, lavender and more gardenias also feature as well as a very special magnolia (the black tulip) which takes pride of place in the centre of the garden and is kept company by lady of the night magnolias bordering the decking.
Camellias and azaleas cover the side of a neighbour’s shed and a vertical garden of strawberries is a great contrast to the brick used on the house. Several raised vegetable gardens contain squash, rockmelon, oranges, kiwi fruit, plums, loganberries, garlic, apricots, parsley, mint, lettuce, Lebanese cucumber, zucchini, rosemary, tomatoes, olives, egg plants, Jonathon and Gala apples, tomatoes, passionfruit, bay leaf, carrots, artichokes and figs. Corn has been planted at different stages to ensure a constant supply of a family favourite. Blackberries and blueberries planted two seasons ago provide 3 to 4 kilograms of fruit per season. Snail traps filled with beer or soapy water keeps the pests at bay but companion planting including marigolds in the vegetable patch contribute to a healthy method of pest control.
Sweet peas in hanging baskets are a ready source of food for the children when they play outside or garden alongside Roseanne. The children also help Lance paint the many raised garden beds and seedling boxes he makes. Their son has made an eye catching garden mobile and two water tanks allow the children to water the garden whenever it is needed.
Friends have now been influenced and are attempting their own vegetable patches. Roseanne and Lance are happy help them by providing seedlings to get them started. Their generosity does not stop there – they also specifically grow stock to donate to school fetes such as tomatoes and petunias.
Roseanne and Lance don’t like to see anything go to waste and have even been known to collect a discarded car transmission and ensure it is recycled correctly. Fallen fruit is provided to their exotic parrots and bok choy is specifically grown to give the birds a healthy mixture. A worm farm uses further kitchen scraps. Clearance item plants often find their way to this home where they are nursed back to life and donated to others or move in permanently alongside the other thriving plants. They have turned many items into features in this garden including an old window purchased online which now forms part of their greenhouse.
The greenhouse holds many ongoing projects of Roseanne’s ideas including propagating clivias. There is a shortage of certain colours of clivias in the western suburbs as their price can be quite high. Roseanne doesn’t want our gardeners to miss out on the beauty of the clivia and has learnt how to nurture and encourage rare colours which may one day adorn other gardens.