a rash committment?

Some months ago, when the weather was balmy, the garden looking dreamy, and I was feeling uncharacteristically confident, I applied to Australia's Open Garden Scheme to open my garden to the public. I didn’t hear from them until a few days ago.

Someone phoned, asking to come and see the garden and to meet me. “It’s too late, the garden’s ruined,” I said. “I’d like to see it anyway”, she said.

She came, she looked, she liked it! So I have committed myself. It’s a new garden project. I’m giving myself just over a year to restore the garden, not to its former soft delicate beauty, but to a design that pleases me and incorporates plants that will survive our increasingly harsh climatic conditions without added water.

And of course I will describe the process as I go. This is what it looks like today.


  1. Well Catmint, we all have to start somewhere. Have you heard of High Country Gardens? It's a nursery of mostly xeriscape or drought tolerant plants based out of New Mexico, I think. I'm not sure if they ship to Australia but just gazing at the plants that fit that criteria and how they can be arranged is a lesson in itself. You could visit their website. To me this is the best part of gardening--the opportunity for something new...transforming the barren into the beautiful. Please keep us posted on your progress. Fun!! And congrats on the garden person's approval of your garden for the tour. That says a lot. We are the worst critics of our gardens. :-)

  2. Oh and what a committment this sounds like. I'm sure it will be beautifyl. Good luck.

  3. Hi catmint. I am really looking forward to see your new garden emerge. I have read Beth Chatto's book about her gravel garden. It looks beautiful. This is in England so some of the plants might apply to your Melbourne Garden. Perhaps you just like to use Australian native plants which adapt best to our different climates. Congratulations on becoming a member of the AOGS.

  4. Catmint, I think you've just committed to something you've been wanting to do anyway... work in your garden... So, now it's official. You have a super reason! Keep us "posted!" ;-) We'll look forward to the progress.

  5. Well, sometimes we need a kick in the pants to get a huge project done! So now you'll have another reason to make over your yard. I echo Grace's comment about High Country Gardens - when I received their catalog, I thought of you. They don't ship outside of the US, but maybe you could request a catalog or just check out their website. Their drought-friendly offerings are right up your alley.
    Good luck with the big project! - VW

  6. Good for you! I look forward to hearing about how you get on :)

    BTW I'm launching a public planting meme for everyone to join in with tomorrow. As you were one of the people to request it, I've put in a link to your blog - hope you don't mind.

  7. That IS a committment. It is bad enough when I feel like I have to garden because the bloggers are expecting new post update. I'd be horrified if they came over and saw everything!


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