DON’T FORGET our Mother’s Day Open Garden opening this weekend.

May 13 and 14 (Mother’s Day Weekend)

Sunningdale Farm

630 Mosquito Hill Road, Mount Jagged

All gardens open from 10am until 4.30pm

General Entry Cost – $8 – Children FREE

Open Gardens SA MEMBERS – $6

Government Concession Card Holders – $6


Opening This Weekend
May 6 and 7

Etre Garden
10 Delaney Avenue, Willunga

Uppill Garden
28 Brook Road – Lower Inman Valley

There are only two more weekends of Open Gardens as another highly successful season draws to a close and the much-loved South Australian program prepares to rest for winter.

This weekend sees the Autumn opening of Etre Garden in Willunga – the second in a series of four open gardens in four seasons. And, those who missed the opportunity to attend our Theatre in the Garden event at Uppill Garden at Lower Inman Valley will now be able see what is behind the garden gate as it also opens this weekend.

Followers can look forward to next Spring with many new gardens already added to the growing program.

Etre Garden

In Autumn Etre Garden glows with scarlet and blue: kangaroo paws and salvias, glory vine, Mexican sage, clematis. Huge New Guinea Bean gourds hang from rampant vines. A harvest of dried herbs is assembled into tea mixes and brewed for tastings.

This small block has been transformed by environmental sculptor and former landscape designer Evette Sunset and is planted with a bold colour palette of reds, blues, purple, white and silver.

Etre is also an aesthetic and practical food bowl with abundantly producing fruit trees and veggie gardens, tea and medicinal herbs, florists’ flowers and bee garden, punctuated by heavenly places to sit and enjoy it all.

The Autumn opening provides a unique opportunity to see how detailed holistic planning can produce year-round interest on a small block with the harvest of huge gourds, pumpkins, fruits, coloured willows, tea and cooking herbs being gathered in.

Evette will give talks for visitors at 11am and 2pm on her design and planting concepts.

Extras – For each season there will be a garden based activity on show. This weekend the Willunga Basket Weavers will also teach visitors how to make rope from materials grown in the garden.

Uppill Garden

This lovely, relaxed bush garden is home to over seventy species of birds and a myriad of Eucalypts including Viminalis, Leucoxylon and Fasciculosa.

The garden has extensive lawns which were centre stage during this year’s Theatre in the Garden performance of Sense and Sensibility.

The lawned pathways at Uppill Garden lead down to a creek and a covered orchard and a very productive vegetable garden.

Grevilleas, thryptomenes, correas, banksias and Geraldton wax sprawl wonderfully over an extensive bank at the front of the house.

The owners have cleverly carved their garden out of this natural setting without compromising its appeal.

Saturday and Sunday – April 29 and 30


St Marys Vineyard – 563 V & A Lane, Penola

Come enjoy the delightful country garden of St Marys with its hundreds of roses and dry stone walls at the inaugural Limestone Coast Plant and Trade Fair.

St Marys is a garden for all seasons and in Autumn will be sure to impress and create a stunning setting for a diverse range of exhibitors.

The event will include a range of talented artists, trades and specialist growers with everything from bulbs to trees, natives to exotics, garden arts, trades, food stalls, wine tasting, refreshments and children’s activity areas.

Come along and enjoy the magnificent property created by the Mulligan family with the spectacular garden taking centre stage. Discover the beauty of the hundreds of roses, bulbs, iris, hardy perennials, trees and shrubs surrounding a classic homestead.

The family’s passion for fresh, season produce has led to the creation of a large kitchen garden including a hot house for seedlings and propogation. Part gate proceeds will go to Cancer Council of SA.

List of Stall Holders

Yahl Iris (Saturday Only)
Reedy Creek Nursery
The Plant People
Kalangadoo Organic (Sunday Only)
Wagner’s Roses
Carousel Flowers
Allisford Farm
Garden Larder Seeds
McKee Engineering
Ginger and Jute
Kathryn Chadston, Glass Jewellery
Liberty Prints
Michael Tranter Farm Produce
Gwandalan Alpaca
Selena Sunke, Essential Oil and Massage
Pizza Project
Strawberries Galore
Terra Rossa CWA Branch
San Piero Coffee
Limestone Coast Pantry
Tantanoola Ice Cream
Giant Games (for kids)
Penola Gymkids Play Area.


Happy Easter from Open Gardens SA!

PLEASE NOTE … there will be no gardens opening this weekend.

We will return on Saturday and Sunday, April 22 and 23 with …

24 Davies Road, Sandy Creek

1 Beaumont Court, Mount Barker


Opening This Weekend

Saturday & Sunday – April 8 & 9

Long Garden

 1 Baust Crescent, Coromandel Valley

When Barry and Christine Long bought this property on the banks of the Sturt River the only tree was a Canary Island Palm. Now, 45 years on, it is a plants man’s paradise. Lawns sweep down to the river’s edge, giving comprehensive views from the picture windows of the house. Tall trees … gingko, oak, plane, ash, Chinese elm, yew, cypress, beech, metasequoia – among others – provide an overhead canopy for under plantings of shrubs and tree ferns, perennial and annual garden beds.

In carefully manicured rooms you will find a plethora of plant species, both native (e.g. eucalyptus, casuarina, araucaria) and exotic (e.g. taxodium, acer, eupatorium) intermingled with groundcovers, shrubbery and garden sculpture. There is a 100 square metre shade house, a small orchard under planted with erigeron and a relatively young labyrinth.

During the recent 2016 spring storms, the Sturt River flooded the garden three times, taking with it solid garden furniture, a statue and tonnes of soil. Already the soil has been replaced twice! The Longs are not to be defeated; their garden and its plantings testify to their commitment as gardeners.

 Wyndbourne Park

 Mawson Road, Forest Range

Conceived on a grand scale and inspired by travel through Italy, France and Spain this large country garden displays an obvious Mediterranean influence both in the landscape features and in the choice of hardy sun loving plants.

There is a diversity of distinct garden settings: a large shade house for the more sensitive plants including hydrangea and hosta collections, a walled Mediterranean courtyard, a sheltered creek garden, a conifer collection, a large rose arbour and bold perennial borders as well as a dry garden and productive vegetable gardens. A garden designer and landscaper Deane Butcher raises many of the plants from seed, in particular the drought tolerant perennials, grasses and Australian natives.

The panoramic views of the surrounding hills and valleys are highlighted and enhanced by unusual pots and quirky sculptures placed as focal points throughout the garden. Wonderful stone walls constructed from local stone by Kym and Deane are an impressive feature of this garden providing many photo opportunities as well as structural elements and protection for plants.

All gardens open from 10am until 4.30pm

General Entry Cost – $8 – Children FREE

Open Gardens SA MEMBERS – $6

Government Concession Card Holders – $6


Saturday & Sunday – March 26 & 27

Von Der Herz
10 Lyndoch Road – Gawler East

Von de Herz is a Gardener’s Garden” always changing with many different influences. There is a plant or style for everyone. There are over 25 fruit trees and a large productive vegie patch which is the heart and soul of the garden. There is plenty of room for children to play, hide and enjoy the outdoors.

Von De Herz Garden is an English influenced garden with over 60 roses and formal hedges sitting alongside natives, yuccas, aloe trees, Japanese maples plus many more plants and trees. The garden promises to keep the keen gardener enthralled.

The sound of trickling water adds to the ambience and helps disguise the fact that one is in the heart and soul of old Gawler, with the sound of birds adding a cheery note.

Tooley’s Half Acre
42 Cheek Avenue – Gawler East

Tooley’s Half Acre is both ornamental and productive with a strong focus on chemical free, sustainable living. The garden features several lawn areas bordered with a variety of shrubs, perennials, roses, grasses, ferns, cycads and palms. A pergola covered in wisteria shades an alfresco eating area, and the grounds include two ponds, a tennis court, swimming pool, pizza oven and cute cubby house. A mature dragon tree, Dracaena draco has settled in after recently being transplanted from another garden and is just starting to show it is pleased with its new home.

The productive garden is extensive and mostly within a large walk-through netted area where a large family of blue wrens, a pair of quails and several lizards happily control insect pests. Organic gardening principles are followed and most water used comes from rain collected and stored in an 115,000 litre water storage system.

Twenty varieties of fruit trees are grown, some grafted with several cultivars, there are three types of berries and a grapevine is being trained around the roof of the netted area to provide some summer shade to the plants, birds, animals and the hen house below. Vegetables and herbs are grown in raised beds for easy soil maintenance and to prevent root competition from the closely planted fruit trees.


Saturday and Sunday – March 18 and 19

Forestbrook Estate

254 Checker Hill Road, Gumeracha

Don’t miss the rare opportunity to visit a garden as it recovers from the Sampson Flat bushfire as part of the Open Gardens SA program this weekend.

Forestbrook Estate has been in the owners’ possession for eight years, during which time they have lovingly expanded the pre-existing garden, taking additional space from the surrounding paddocks to install a vegetable patch, tropical garden area, covered fruit orchard and perennials. The garden was affected by the Sampson Flat bushfire, with flames licking the edges of the house garden and destroying many surrounding woodland eucalypts, native shrubs, fences and the nearby pine forest.

With stoic Aussie resilience, the garden owners have systematically gone about repairing the damage to garden infrastructure, replanting hedges with self-struck euonymus cuttings, felling burnt trees, replacing the driveway natives with red oaks and replacing the fruit tree collection that the fire took out. The refurbishment of the garden is ongoing. Behind the house, sheltered by a pergola and a massive fig tree is a lush fernery with tree ferns, camellias and hydrangeas. Lawns, hedged beds and standard roses with an under planting of hellebores greet visitors as they come down the driveway towards the house.


Sunday and Monday – March 19 and 20

Alru Farm

1016 One Tree Hill Road, One Tree Hill

Al-Ru is a glorious country garden just 30 minutes north of Adelaide which has been an enduring feature of the open garden scheme since its inception.  Usually open in spring, this first time late summer opening will be a real treat  for garden visitors.   Ruth and Alan Irving have transformed the farm over the last 35 years to 10 acres of cultivated garden and they continue to experiment.  The latest is a classic herb garden behind the evocative iron and glass  conservatory, as well as new Dahlia beds and a plan to transform the gardens around the lake.

On arrival visitors are greeted by the spectacular shock of magenta/scarlet bougainvillea on the walls of the house and then must choose between several enticing walks through a  progression of themed garden rooms  bursting with colour and interest.  Pergolas, arbours, bowers, ponds and shady nooks invite inspection. A welcome shaded glen under the majestic Claret ash underplanted with a lovely combination of angelica, campanula and bronze sorrel requires a longer pause.  Stalwarts of the late summer perennial garden include salvias, windflowers, alstromeria, hollyhocks, cannas,  daylillies, asters, boltonia, sedums, mirabilis  and dahlias.  Ruth has planted an assortment of  striking, hardy, old fashioned shrubs such as iochroma, dombeya, solanum, datura, plumbago and pomegranite. And of course the hundreds of unforgettable  roses with their last hurrah of  summer blooms.


Saturday and Sunday – March 11 & 12

Frosty Flats

2891 Onkaparinga Valley Road, Birdwood

South Australia is beautiful at any time of the year but Autumn is an especially stunning season for local gardens. The Autumn season of Open Gardens SA starts in earnest this weekend with the opening of Frosty Flats in Birdwood.

Frosty Flats is described as a real “gardeners’ garden” and is a cottage garden full of flowers in all colours alongside masses of textured foliage. The garden wraps itself around a web of little paths that wind between beds crammed with plants. Frosty Flats is home to a vast assortment of roses, perennials, geraniums and succulents. Cannas, Sedum spectabile, penstemons, alstroemeria and salvias add an extra splash of colour in autumn. Trees, mostly flowering varieties, also provide shelter and height. A pond, birdbaths, arbours and other structures support climbing roses and clematis. Pots of succulents are dotted throughout, logs are placed as seats, and several old ladders are used to hold more pots. Rusty machinery once used to run the adjacent farm rests amongst the foliage and flowers.

The original garden surrounded the old 1880s stone farm house but recently it has been expanded and again informal paths are a feature. The beds between are richly planted, particularly with bulbs and roses selected for their vivid flowers. Mass planted, they create a spectacular ‘riot of colour’.


Saturday and Sunday – February 18 and 19

The Barn Palais, Mount Gambier

747 Glenelg River Road (O.B. Flat)

The Barn Palais at Mount Gambier will be the next garden to open its gates this weekend as part of the Open Gardens SA 2017 program.

The Barn is home to a real plant lover’s garden with around 2000 roses including David Austins, Delbards and heritage varieties mass planted within a formal framework. Other species like delphiniums, salvias, species geraniums, daylilies and other pretty perennials add to the rich and diverse planting scheme. Astilbes and hostas thrive in a bog garden and as a contrast there is a dry border of kniphofias, grasses and sedums in red, yellow and blue tones. A new border planted with snow pears, white hydrangeas and rugosa roses, pink agastache, nepeta and blue salvias is backed by a hedge of golden spirea and wooded area with 200 silver birch trees.

The garden is framed with a backdrop of 100 year old trees – gingko, tulip tree, white horse chestnut, linden, turkey oak, dogwoods and an avenue of plane trees. The newer plantings of trees include Cercis ‘Forest Pansy’, Malus trilobata, Pyrus ‘Capital’, red and yellow stemmed dogwoods and the beautiful burgundy shrub, Sambucus nigra.

The organic kitchen garden provides The Barn Restaurant with an abundance of fresh seasonal vegetables, garnishes and herbs and the prolific annual harvest of tomatoes and quinces makes a year’s supply of relish and quince paste.

The opening will also include light luncheons in the marquee and the charity for this opening is the local Stand Like Stone group.


Sense and Sensibility in the Garden
January 2017

Open Gardens SA and Blue Sky Theatre are staging an outdoor version of Sense and Sensibility complete with gossiping neighbours, giggly girls and eligible bachelors. A fun-filled adaptation of Jane Austen’s beloved novel will be performed in local gardens over three weekends next January.

Sense and Sensibility will be held at a garden in Victor Harbor on 14 and 15 January, Stangate House Aldgate on 21 and 22 January, and Beaumont House, Beaumont on 26 January (Australia Day), 27 and 28 January.

Award-winning Adelaide director Dave Simms is filling the timeless classic with humour and bold theatricality, giving audiences a whole new way to fall in love with the classic comedy. After their father’s untimely death, sisters Marianne and Elinor Dashwood (played by Kate Van Der Horst and Laura Kiil) lose their fortune, their home, and all their prospects for love. But fortunes can turn again if only they can just find an eligible bachelor with plenty of cash. The plucky heroines prove there’s more than one way to find a man to marry.

The garden will be transformed from a stately home to a cottage in Devonshire, where Marianne is torn between the handsome John Willoughby (played by James Edwards) and the sensible Colonel Brandon (Josh Coldwell). Meanwhile, Elinor’s romantic hopes with Edward Ferrars (Lee Cook) are hindered when she discovers he’s already engaged. Also in the cast are experienced Adelaide actors Miriam Keane, Lindy LeCornu, Steve Marvanek, Nicole Rutty and Georgia Stockham.

Tickets for this production are $35. What a great idea for a Christmas present.

You are welcome to bring your own picnic or you may chose a two ticket/picnic box combo for $95. Beer, wine and soft drinks are available for purchase at the bar.

Please click on Upcoming Events above to book.


This weekend’s Open Gardens
Sat & Sun December 3rd & 4th

Opening Times:  10.00 am – 4.30pm  Entry $8. Children FREE. Members $6

Please click on Current Season/Garden Openings above to view full garden details and to download and print the Garden Notes.

Kurrawirra, 292 Mount Barker Road, Aldgate
Beverina, 2 Silver Road, Bridgewater
Jennings Garden, 16 Turnbull Drive, Mt Gambier

These last gardens of the season will open this weekend as the 2016 Open Gardens SA season comes to an end. The weekend will also include a special re-opening of the Jennings Garden at Mount Gambier after the owners were forced to cancel recently due to bad weather. Kurrawirra at Aldgate and Beverina at Bridgewater will provide garden lovers with the opportunity to take a day trip into the hills and visit these two beautiful gardens on the same day – a great way to farewell the current season.

Open Gardens will return in January with the Etre Garden on Sunday 15th January.

292 Mount Barker Road, Aldgate

The picturesque white timber cottage is surrounded by half an acre of garden areas. Stunning crepescule roses cover each end of the verandah. Stone walls built by the owners are a feature of the garden and arches and other structures were built using recycled timbers from the house renovation.
The orchid area has been expanded recently and includes fig, grapefruit, apples and a very productive berry trellis. Nutrients for the orchid and vegetable gardens are provided by the chooks and compost bays.
The large plane tree provides perfect protection for the fern area of tree ferns, fuchsias and shade loving plants. The woodland area in the front of the garden is accessed by a wooden bridge and a path leading through plectranthus, clivias and camellias. Salvias are a favourite plant and there are many growing in the sunny areas of the garden.
Devonshire teas will be provided under the pavilion by The Hut Social Committee. The money raised will be used to support The Hut’s community projects.
The opening will feature a plant sale run by the Stirling and Hills Garden Club. The proceeds support SA garden owners whose gardens are damaged by fire and flood.

2 Silver Road, Bridgewater

This opening is your chance to see a major garden restoration in progress at Bridgewater.
Beverina is a house and garden with a rakish past. Rumours abound about the goings on in and around this fascinating 19th century stone house.
The present owners have taken on the challenge of remaking this garden with great energy and commitment. Water is a major component of the garden with two lakes, a stream and a landscaped dam. And it has the benefit of original dry stone walling and bridges to add to the character of what is a very interesting property.
A rose garden, an orchard and generous borders planted with Mediterranean plants now complement original European conifers. In addition there is a rose garden, an extensive vegetable garden and large native plantings which include well grown kangaroo paws.
*A major garden renovation in progress with much already achieved
*Extensive drought tolerant Mediterranean borders, large rose beds and vegetable garden – lilies will be in flowers and roses at their best
*Woodland with tree ferns, stone walling and original bridge features – plenty of room to wander.

Jennings Garden
16 Turnbull Drive, Mount Gambier

Moss rocks and imported soil have been used to retain and reshape a sloping site into a garden filled with pretty plants, shady trees and sweeping lawns.
Daylilies, agapanthus, bearded iris, wisteria, camellias, azaleas and bulbs provide a spectacular spring display with more than 600 roses adding colour as well as perfume. There are a variety of trees include flowering cherries, magnolias, birches and conifers.
A small pond is filled with water lilies and arches covered with climbing plants add interest and structure to the garden.
Vegetables are grown in raised beds and wine barrels are given new life planted with herbs and berries.
A greenhouse holds a collection of orchids.
Charity – Make a Wish Foundation, Mount Gambier.

For more information, including garden owner contact details and high res images, please contact:
Media Liaison Officer Gail Heritage
Ph: 0410 755 514


This weekend’s Open Gardens
Sat & Sun November 19 & 20

Seafield, 25 Seafield Avenue, Kingswood
Walnut Hill & Roach Garden, 5 & 7 Walker St, Crafers
Heatherby, 29 Longwood Road, Stirling
Wyndbourne Park, 258 Mawson Road, Forest Range

There are only three more weekends of Open Gardens this spring and plenty still to see, including two neighbouring gardens at Crafers opening this weekend.

Dry climate author Trevor Nottle will open his garden along with neighbours at the Roach Garden in Crafers on both Saturday and Sunday, and gardens are also opening at Kingswood, Stirling and Forest Range.

The weather is looking spectacular and is for Mostly Sunny with 22 degrees on Saturday, and a warmer 28 degrees on Sunday.

Walnut Hill and Roach Gardens (neighboring properties)
5 and 7 Walkers Street, Crafers

ROACH GARDEN: 7 Walkers Street, Crafers The garden is large and well planted with a selection of fine trees, flowering trees, shrubs, climbers, roses, perennials and bulbs. Grassy paths and open spaces link the garden in the manner of a stroll garden with many turning points and fresh vistas. Birdlife is abundant with many small native birds nesting in the trees and shrubs – blue wrens, fire finches, silver eyes, eastern spinebills, yellow eared honey-eaters. Nectar rich flowers and dense shrubberies attract the birds and make safe nesting sites, and the owners provide drinking spots with bird baths and other containers. Roses, perennials and liliums are blended in colourful mixed borders making a rich and complex tapestry of flowers and foliage. A small vegetable garden produces ample herbs, salads, tomatoes and leafy greens for stir-fries and general cooking. With several different levels in the front and back gardens there are intimate sitting areas with chairs and tables that encourage meals and drinks outdoors in sunny or shady situations. The background of greenery is varied and displays foliage contrasts such as those between cannas and hedychiums with tree ferns and dietes.

WALNUT HILL GARDEN: Well-known author, garden historian, traveller and plant collector, Trevor Nottle’s own garden reflects his commitment to climate compatible gardening. But if you think that his garden would then be a rather run of the mill display of well-known drought tolerant common or garden plants then you would be wrong. An incorrigible plant collector Trevor seeks out and grows a huge range of very rarely seen bulbs and perennials mostly from the other Mediterranean climate regions around the world. To visit is always an education as well as a delight.
The century old trees surrounding the cottage provide shelter for the more delicate or hard to grow species and a large collection of pots and urns provide superior drainage for those plants which would not enjoy the cold wet Hills winter soils (Clematis, Lillies and Peonies).

29 Longwood Road, Stirling

Majestic old trees dating from the early 20th century tower over the charming white weatherboard cottage which was once the former home of renowned nurseryman Quentin Wollaston whose father Morton Wollaston planted the first ever Claret Ash (Fraxinus Raywood) as a chance seedling in his Bridgewater property. Heatherby boasts many rare and unusual mature trees including a heritage listed weeping elm, oaks, maples, lindens, magnolias and many conifers and a beautiful Claret Ash.
The central oval lawn is surrounded by hedges of the cerise pink ‘Princess Maud’ azalea and hedges of the pretty pink Bonica rose edge the gravel driveway. Elegant wrought iron arches lead down a romantic walkway leading to formal seating. The shade provided by the tall trees creates the perfect microclimate for Daphne ‘Eternal fragrance’, hydrangeas, rhododendrons, fuchsias, arthropodiums, cliveas and hellebores surrounding a large pond. Beyond the formal gardens and tennis court are the wild woods which children will love to explore.

Mary will provide an update on the history of the house and garden and is hoping to have Quentin Wollaston give a talk about the trees

Charity – The Queen Victoria Auxillary of the Womens & Childrens Hospital

Seafield Garden
25 Seafield Avenue, Kingswood

This elegant garden cleverly uses formal design and informal mass plantings to create a feeling of rural tranquillity only a few kilometres from the CBD. Water jets arching over a long, black-tiled pool disturb the reflections of sky and garden. The play of water and light delights the senses.
Plants have been carefully selected to match the era of the late 1800s sandstone cottage and to minimise water use and maintenance. The verdant deep green of the garden surrounding the pool creates a sensual oasis on the hottest of days.
Garden ornaments are strategically placed to sit comfortably amongst the cottage garden plants. Rusty wrought iron and barbed wire help to capture a rural atmosphere. Motifs are repeated with the most obvious being the circles and half circles captured in the paving and garden design.
A playful “folly”, simulating a classical Roman temple, topped by a lacy wrought iron dome, placed at a classic intersection of paths, is juxtaposed with an equally classic Australian Hills hoist, in a whimsical exercise of the owners’ humour.

Charity: Captain Courageous Foundation

Wyndbourne Park
Mawson Road, Forest Range

Conceived on a grand scale and inspired by travel through Italy, France and Spain this large country garden displays an obvious Mediterranean influence both in the landscape features and in the choice of hardy sun loving plants. There is a diversity of distinct garden settings: a large shade house for the more sensitive plants including hydrangea and hosta collections, a walled Mediterranean courtyard, a sheltered creek garden, a conifer collection, a large rose arbour and bold perennial borders as well as a dry garden and productive vegetable gardens.
A garden designer and landscaper Deane Butcher raises many of the plants from seed, in particular the drought tolerant perennials, grasses and Australian natives.
The panoramic views of the surrounding hills and valleys are highlighted and enhanced by unusual pots and quirky sculptures placed as focal points throughout the garden. Wonderful stone walls constructed from local stone by Kym and Deane are an impressive feature of this garden providing many photo opportunities as well as structural elements and protection for plants

This weekend’s Open Gardens
Sat & Sun November 12 & 13

Two gardens forced to cancel openings earlier in spring due to the severe weather conditions will re-open their gardens this weekend. Possum Park at Mount Barker and Woodhill at Hope Forest will showcase their gardens after South Australia’s heavy rains washed their openings away last month. These gardens will be joined by Jennings Garden in Mount Gambier and Hatherleigh Cottage garden in Aldgate as SA gardens flourish in the recent warmer conditions.

Possum Park
3 Hunt Road, Mt Barker (near the intersection with Native Avenue)

Possum Park is a 14 acre nature park developed by conservationist Andrew Crompton over 40 years from part of a subdivided cattle farm. Over the years, changes in aims and activities reflect an increasing awareness and experience of returning local flora into the landscape. Initially, Andrew had a plan of orchards, shelter belts and horticultural specimens. The hardiest of these early plantings are still evident.

Emphasis since 1984 has been on establishing and regenerating local native flora either as grassland, woodland or as denser scrub habitat areas. There was an initial phase of collecting seed of local flora and rescuing from roadworks, propagating and planting. Management activities today include careful herbicide application, hand weeding, pruning, sowing, transplanting and small-scale patch burning to eliminate weeds and to develop and maintain the desired vegetation structure. It is a work in progress – the aim is to continually improve vegetation condition and diversity. The large areas of weed free native grassland are a particular feature. There are spring wildflowers including Bulbine and Chocolate lilies, Native Ranunculus, Native Pelargonium. Local vegetation provides habitat for a range of local insects, birds, mammals and reptiles.

Possum Park is interesting because it is a landscape which respects local flora and is managed with no fertiliser, very little irrigation, re-use of grey water, mostly home-propagated plants, and simple tools and management. The landscape is the result of knowledge and timely management with little input of physical resources.

Hazards – visitors can expect to encounter uneven surfaces, fallen sticks on path ways and – like many areas in the hills – there are hopper ants. There are two ponds which usually have some water in them by spring.

Car parking – the adjoining neighbour to the east has offered their paddock for visitor parking if the weather is dry. They ask visitors to consider a gold coin donation to Birds Australia.

Paths – to avoid damage to native flora, visitors will be asked to stay on marked paths and trails and on grass areas that have been cut.

Charity: Part proceeds from this open will go to the Overseas Specialist Surgical Association of Australia (teas), Bush Heritage (entry fee).

86 Verral Road, Hope Forest

Walking down the meandering drive leads you to the unexpected view of the owner-built straw bale house and water wise gardens with crepe myrtles, under-planted with euphorbias, dianella, viburnum and jasmine. Through the archway the white and purple wisteria cover the long veranda at the front of the house. Looking out from here are numerous Wistow stone walls that create terraced beds of roses and drought tolerant plants for this sloping site.

North from the verandah is a garden of roses, salvias, bulbs and other Mediterranean plants. To the east through the rose arbour is a lawn edged with roses and surrounded by herbs. The garden includes a straw bale chook house for the hens who run through an enclosed orchard area, a stone garden shed and vegetable gardens to supply the owners with plenty of produce. There are numerous fruit and nut trees through the grounds of this 30 acre organically managed property. There is also an extensive collection of over 40 varieties of deciduous trees. The Willunga slate paving surrounds this thoughtfully designed house and garden.

Charity: Part proceeds from this garden open will go to Special Education Group; Willunga Waldorf School.

 Hatherleigh Cottage
7 Linwood Ave Aldgate

Beautiful trees and informal garden beds surround a charming ivy-clad stone cottage in an idyllic hills setting. This delightful garden is diverse with areas of lawn and cool climate plants including tree ferns, hydrangeas, camellias and azaleas enjoying the shade of the many trees but as well there are sunny spots planted with roses and other Mediterranean plants.

A weeping Crepuscule rose makes a stunning focal point when in flower, various salvias and other perennials add colour, grasses add texture, clipped plants add form and self-sown annuals add a touch of surprise to this lovely garden.

The owner loves trees and has amassed quite a collection which includes a Zelkova, an Amelanchier, several different acers, a beautiful Himalayan dogwood, ginkgos, alders, a claret ash and an enormous bay tree. There is a vegetable garden, several interesting pieces of sculpture, and at the ‘bottom of the garden’ an area of bush with indigenous xanthorrhoea.

Designated charities are: Captain Courageous Foundation, Sunday: morning and afternoon teas provided by “The Marilyns” – Cancer Council S.A.

Jennings Garden
16 Turnbull Drive, Mount Gambier

Moss rocks and imported soil have been used to retain and reshape a sloping site into a garden filled with pretty plants, shady trees and sweeping lawns. Daylilies, agapanthus, bearded iris, wisteria, camellias, azaleas and bulbs provide a spectacular spring display with more than 600 roses adding colour as well as perfume. There are a variety of trees include flowering cherries, magnolias, birches and conifers. A small pond is filled with water lilies and arches covered with climbing plants add interest and structure to the garden.

Vegetables are grown in raised beds and wine barrels are given new life planted with herbs and berries. A greenhouse holds a collection of orchids.

Extras – Plant Sales on the Sunday

Charity – Part proceeds from this opening will go to the Make a Wish Foundation, Mount Gambier.

This weekend’s Open Gardens
Sat & Sun November 5 & 6

Spring has finally SPRUNG and the Open Gardens SA spring program is now in full bloom. Don’t miss this chance to see some of South Australia’s best private gardens as they open this weekend.

Anna’s Garden
46 Gladys Street, Clarence Gardens

82 Elliott Road, McLaren Vale

271 Back Callington Road, Mount Barker Springs

410 Shepherds Lane, Penola


112 Camac Road, Balhannah


This weekend’s Open Gardens
Sat & Sun October 29 & 30

Ashgrove Iris Garden
53-55 Albert Street, Gumeracha

Gate Cottage
66 Leslie Street, Mylor

My Gralunga
41 Ruwoldt Road, Yahl

Sanity Garden
17 Pearson Street, Tumby Bay

Watson Garden
19 Bertha Street, Mount Gambier

2 Parkgate Place, Upper Sturt


Gardens opening this weekend
Sat & Sun October 22 & 23

Bordertown and nearby Mundulla will make a spectacular entry into the Open Gardens SA Spring program with three gardens to open this weekend. The stunning Tiatucka Homestead at Port Lincoln will also open along with the popular Beard Garden at Norwood. Bloomin Acre’s at Wistow is open SUNDAY ONLY.

455 Siding Road, Bordertown

Kenwyn has been in the Staude family for over 100 years. The current custodians, Kym, Kathy and son Tyke breed prime lambs along with cropping. The garden’s journey began in 1996 when, after Kym and Kathy married, Kathy had an insatiable urge to be outdoors in fresh air just getting dirty. It may have been the result of 16 years spent working in a bank! The ‘typical’ front and back yards were gradually converted, taking on a cottage garden theme. Five years later, things got a little more serious after the family horse ‘Wally’ passed away. It became a race to see what claimed the now empty horse yard – the sheep or more garden. The garden won!

There has never been a master plan or an intention of creating a show garden but because of the soil – loam over clay – combined with quality underground water, bucket loads of sheep poo and plenty of mulch on hand the garden has flourished.

There is an interesting mix of roses, perennial annuals with the heroes being the salvias which thrive in the alkaline soil.

Charity: Part proceeds from this garden opening will go to the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

Curlew Park
43 Chark Road, Mundulla

A garden full of vistas of the surrounding landscape of red gums and paddocks, designed to be picture perfect from any room of the home.

Lawns encase the home on three fronts to help with fire protection, and beds follow the contours and natural draining and flow of the land.

Borders feature carefully selected species with the southern side predominantly Mediterranean and South African plants, and the northern side dedicated to a rose garden featuring a stunning display of more than 150 roses and perennial beds.

The plantings around the adjacent dam are predominantly natives.

Ornamental pear trees line the drive, and the garden features a large variety of hardy, deciduous trees including Bradford Pear, White Cedars, Claret Ash, Plane Trees, Golden Ash, Hawthorn, Lemon Scented Gum.

A driveway is lined with borders of hardy Fountain Grass, Lomandra Tanika and Statice. The gardens also features an orchard and Chook Mahal.

Charity: Part proceeds of this garden will also go to the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

100 Creecoona Terrace, Bordertown

Since the Creecoona homestead was built in the 1860s the garden has been changed and extended several times and is now planted mainly with pants that originate in Mediterranean regions. Pine trees and two ancient olives remain from the original garden.

Old limestone has been used for retaining walls, along with recycled concrete and Mt Gambier stone for garden paths. The colouring of the stone is in perfect harmony with the adjoining plantings of Gold Bunny roses, mini agapanthus, lavender and purple statice.

Rose arches and a wisteria walk have been constructed using recycled material from the property. Echiums, agapanthus, acanthus, pomegranate, buddleia, sedum, euphorbia, westringia, roses, daisies, geraniums, succulents and many drought tolerant silver leafed plants thrive and cope well with the hot summers and hard water.

Trees planted for shade include a strawberry tree (Arbutus unedo), Chinese elm, Judas tree (Cercis siliquastrum), salt cedar (Tamarix chinensis), claret ash (Fraxinus raywoodii), golden ash (Fraxinus excelsor aurea) & silky oak and there are a number of shrubs.

An extensive productive garden includes raised vegetable beds, herb garden, asparagus and horseradish patches along with an orchard, hops, a small vineyard and winery. An old recycled tank has been cleverly used to create garden shed.

Charity: Part proceeds from this opening will go to the Bordertown Hospital Auxiliary

Tiatucka Homestead Gardens
35-45 Haigh Drive, Tiatukia (Pt Lincoln)

A grevillea lined driveway welcomes the visitor to the Tiatucka Homestead Gardens which is an absolute credit to the owners, Wendy and Joel. When they purchased the property it was very run down and had not been lived in for some time.

They have restored the magnificent home and the gardens are on a large and grand style in a park like setting. They included tiered rose beds full of colour, and an arbour covered in the stunning Pierre de Ronsard climber.

Other features include native planting areas, palms, manicured lawns and lots of pots to showcase a diverse range of plants and annuals.

A large pond collects run off water which is recycled back onto the garden.

Visitors will be amazed at the grandeur that has been created … all with the bonus of views of beautiful Boston Bay and Port Lincoln.

Charity: Part proceeds from this garden opening will go to Beyond Blue.

Beard Garden
134 Beulah Road, Norwood

Margaret Beard has overseen the evolution of this elegant garden from a sunny semi-formal and predominantly white garden into a mature, sheltered oasis brimful of colour themed cottage plants jostling for attention and light.

The ten years of dryer than usual summers and increasing root competition from the huge elms, jacarandas, brachychiton and camphor laurel has prompted an experiment with more drought and shade tolerant species from other Mediterranean climate regions.

Delphiniums, campanula, iris and poppies and self-sown valerian and nigella intermingle with roses in an exhuberant spring display and the jacarandas in bloom are a breath-taking sight.

The perfume from philadelphus, roses and jasmine fills the air. A walled garden with a mosaic tiled floor marks the site where a conservatory once stood and where today roses and clematis clamber over arches and pillars. A raised pond with running water is another delightfully subtle feature

The fences surrounding the lawn tennis court provide support for a collection of favourite climbing roses, notably, crepiscule, Cicely Lascelles and Sally Holmes. One corner is devoted to vegetables which thrive due to the generous application of mulch compost and manures.

Charity: Part proceeds from this garden opening will go to the St Johns Cadets.

Bloomin Acres ( OPEN SUNDAY ONLY )
20 Harrop Road, Wistow

Majestic old gum trees provide protection from hot, drying winds in summer and freezing winter winds for an excellent collection of camellias, citrus, ornamental shrubs and trees in this large informal country garden which won first prize in the 2014 Mt Barker Show garden competition.

Spacious lawns are bordered by colourful perennial beds filled with alstroemeria, clivea, iris, salvias, penstemons, campanula, spring bulbs and self-seeding annuals such as Queen Anne’s lace and poppies.

Natural pathways lead under rose covered arbours and over a small wooden bridge which spans a creek bed. Ti-tree brush houses contain ferns, hanging baskets, fuchsias and orchids.

Massed succulents and cacti in raised beds are protected by stone walling surrounding a cleverly converted swimming pool which has become a floating haven for waterlilies and goldfish. Raised vegetable beds, berries and fruit trees provide a succession of fruits and vegetables for the family.


Gardens opening this weekend
Sat & Sun October 15 & 16

43 Fifth Avenue, St Peters

Baroona is a large and imposing house built in 1901 and once home to the Mayor of St Peters. The history of the property is interesting and it has featured in an episode of the television series ‘Who’s Been Sleeping in My House’.

Parts of the garden are laid out as a modern interpretation of the original garden based on early photos of the property whereas other areas are quite contemporary in their design. Roses, mostly white or yellow flowered, are dotted throughout the garden and there are several beds mass planted with an extensive collection of over 600 iris.

A horseshoe shaped lawn area carefully sited so the luck flows towards the house is copied from a garden designed by the Spanish architect Gaudi and is surrounded with a collection of plants that symbolise Hope. Several raised beds in the shape of lucky four-leaf clovers are planted with vegetables and herbs.

An entertaining deck has a miniature replica made by Greg Johns of his huge sculpture Whirling Mandala which sits at the northern end of Osmond Terrace, Norwood. Fruit trees are dotted throughout the garden.

Charity: Part proceeds to Variety – The Children’s Charity

A Room with a View
108A Frederick Street, Evandale

This inspirational property is owned by a garden designer who has used her professional skills to create a gorgeous garden on a compact site. She has filled the garden with her favourite things – water features complete with fish, statuary, a shade house, plenty of garden seats and an amazing array of plants, both ornamental and productive.

A long walkway which leads from the road to the house is bordered by a narrow garden bed filled with espaliered fruit trees and an assortment of plants which make an attractive and welcoming entrance. The courtyard is partly enclosed with a high curved stone wall being the backdrop to the entertaining area. It features a small pond into which water slowly trickles from a mosaic mirror. Lush plants add to the ambience.

Beyond is another garden area crammed with interesting and colourful perennials, vegetables – some in raised beds, fruit trees and lily ponds. The shade house beyond is home to a plant nursery and shade loving plants. Wherever possible throughout the property small garden beds or collections of pot plants have been included to create a focal point and soften walls and fences.

Gardens opening this weekend
Sat & Sun October 8 & 9

It’s been an interesting few weeks in South Australia with recent severe weather events causing a few of our gardens to reschedule their openings.

Boats End at Currency Creek (above) will re-open this weekend after being forced to cancel their September opening due to earlier heavy rains.

Woodhill at Hope Forest has cancelled their opening this weekend due to last week’s staggering storm events. They will re-open on November 12 and 13.

Open Gardens at Penola, Mount Barker, and Leabrook will go ahead as planned this weekend. Please find up to date information about these openings below and keep up to date at our website,

We thank all of our gardeners for their perseverance and hard work, and wish them clear skies (with just a BIT of rain) for the remainder of the spring season.

Boat’s End
191 Adelaide Place, Currency Creek

Boat’s End is set on the side of a sweeping hill overlooking the Goolwa lakes system. The Mediterranean style garden has many different plantings that have been established successively over the past decade. Plantings include echium, succulents, furcraea, salvia, euphorbia, sedums and natives.

The garden relies on rainwater alone. Boat’s End has featured in gardening programs on television and is written up in a number of eminent garden books because of the successful design elements and plantings suited to the climate and location. A “spiral” of a local juncus is a favourite with children.

A variety of drought tolerant shrubs, groundcovers and grasses laid out in informal beds developed from a bare paddock. Green, silver, grey and brown foliage are contrasted with flowers of many colours. Boat’s End is recognized nationally as an exemplary Mediterranean garden.

Yallum Park
4325 Mt Burr Road, Penola

Yallum Park has been in the current owner’s family for over a century but its history goes back much earlier to the days of the squattocracy in the 1840’s and was, for a time, owned by politician and wine pioneer, John Riddoch.

Today Yallum Park is 20 acres of parkland featuring a collection of magnificent trees from all over the world, many planted about 150 years ago… many are named and dated. A grand driveway leads to a two story mansion built in 1880 and character filled outbuildings dating from 1840. The gardens and outbuildings surrounding the mansion are a “work in progress”. Enjoy the ambience in the park like garden as well as the many shrubs, trees and the flower garden around the house.

Three guided tours will be held both days at 11am, 2pm and 4pm. Bookings are essential, 30 persons maximum per tour, $10 per head. Phone 0418854505, email or tickets at gate. (General garden entry is $8).

The nominated charity for this garden is the Country Fire Service.

24 Hill Street, Mount Barker

Tickletank, the home and garden of artist and gardener Irene Pearce has delighted and inspired thousands of visitors over many years.

This intimate garden is wrapped closely around a number of concrete water storage tanks which Irene herself has transformed into a quirky but comfortable home, decorated with her colourful mosaics and creative artwork made from recycled objects.

The garden also features innovative ideas, recycled objects and a marvellous mosaic driveway which adds permanent colour to an already colourful display of hardy cottage perennials and self-seeding annuals mixed with Australian native plants and succulents.

7 The Parkway, Leabrook

A well designed contemporary garden fully landscaped in 2013/14 to complement Viterbo, an 1882 stone villa, built and owned until recently by the Clark family of Hazelwood, the house that gave the adjoining suburb its name.

Plants have been selected for their low water use as well as their aesthetic qualities and have been thoughtfully placed mixing natives and exotics for maximum effect. There are a number of hedges and clipped spheres, with succulents, perennials and grasses planted as contrast. A gravelled area with a rusted fire bowl is surrounded by a ring of apricot coloured roses – a spectacular sight when all are blooming.

A traditional boules court shaded by an old olive and bordered with Skyrocket junipers and hedges of Avonview lavender has an authentic Mediterranean feel which is appropriate for a house named after a town in Italy! Adjacent to the swimming pool grey foliage groundcovers harmonise with a small water feature and rill with a backdrop of boldly patterned rusted steel panels.

On the northern side spheres of smartly clipped Abelia, silver Convolvulus cneorum and Cineraria ‘Silver Dust’ planted beside pretty old-fashioned pink hibiscus look perfect against the lovely old bluestone wall of the house.

A garden overflowing with good ideas and examples of interesting plant combinations. The opening will also include the sale of pre-loved garden books, garden sculptures, tea, coffee and wine. Biscuits, slices, scones and cupcakes will also be available.

The Charity partner for this garden is Sight For All.

Gardens opening this weekend
Sat, Sun & Mon, October 1, 2 & 3

Open Gardens would like to advise that due to this week’s bad weather, Possum Park at Mount Barker is unable to open. Recent weather events have currently rendered the garden inaccessible. Possum Park will open at a later date.

Dunedin at Strathalbyn will still open both Saturday and Sunday from 10am until 4.30pm, along with AlRu Farm on Sunday and Monday.

Gardens opening this weekend
Sat & Sun, September 3 & 4

Please click on Garden Openings, Current Season above to view full details and to download and print the Garden Notes
Avondale at Rhynie and The Looking Glass Garden at Marino will be the first gardens to open as part of the new spring season of Open Gardens SA. The two gardens will be the first of nearly 50 to open before Christmas as the success of the state-based program continues.

 Open Gardens SA started in July 2015, following in the footsteps of the former national Open Gardens Scheme, which disbanded. Last year the entry fee of $8 attracted more than 20,000 visitors, with approximately $80,000 going back to garden owners and their chosen charities. Additionally, more than $75,000 was raised by charities operating plant stalls, morning teas and other supporting activities as part of the events.

 The committee of Open Gardens SA is looking forward to another year of stunning gardens and fantastic fundraising and would like to thank everyone who has helped make the organisation a success.

 Opening This Weekend   Saturday and Sunday   September 3 and 4

 AVONDALE         146 Avondale Road (5 kilometres South of Rhynie)

Tens of thousands of spring bulbs create a sea of blue, cream and gold at the entrance to this romantic country garden.

Muscari, bluebells and dark blue hyacinths combine with freesias, daffodils and snowflakes against a backdrop of mature ornamental trees. Tulips, orchids, rockery plants and carpets of cyclamen will appeal to plant connoisseurs. Beneath the delicate foliage of silver birches, a waterfall and pools add gentle sound to the natural beauty. Seats crafted from logs and slate invite leisurely contemplation of the superb rural landscape.

Opening Times 10am until 4.30pm

Entry; $8. OGSA Members $6. Children Under 18 FREE

 THE LOOKING GLASS GARDEN           2 Caralue Road, Marino

The Looking Glass Garden continues to be a fascinating work in progress, showing creative problem solving planting on a tricky steep site close to the coast. A mix of spring-flowering native and exotic species suited to the dry coastal conditions and the thin layer of topsoil create a stunning display along pathways through a challenging steep terrain.

Little nooks with garden seats and garden art all create interest, along with a pond at the base of a waterfall, sitting serenely under a canopy of taller eucalypts.

New in 2016 is a stunning multi-level deck constructed under two old pepper trees and hugging the contours of the protruding rocks and tree trunks with seating to sit and soak up views across tree canopies to the ocean beyond.

One of the many highlights of this garden is the music coming from a white grand piano located in the garden.

SPECIAL OPENING TIMES     10am til 5.30pm

Entry $8. OGSA Members $6. Children Under 18 FREE

For more information, including garden owner contact details and high res images
please contact:
Gail Heritage, OGSA Media Liaison Officer     phone  0410 755 514


Posting the 2016-17 Season
Thursday 12th May

We recently opened the last two gardens of our inaugural 2015-16 season. We would like to thank our Garden Openers and the South Australian public for supporting OGSA over our first 12 months, We welcomed more than 20,000 visitors and raised more than $48,000 for various charities.

The planning for our 2016-17 season is almost complete and our web page will be previewing views of this season’s gardens. You will be able to see the full details of each garden as they are published by going to the Garden Openings tab above and clicking on Current Season. We look forward to seeing you over the upcoming season.

Additional Garden opening Sunday 8th November

Because of garden cancellations as a result of storm damage, Bloomin Acres at 20 Harrop Road Wistow has kindly agreed to open on Sunday 8th November from 10am to 4.30pm. Please click on the 2015-16 Season tab above to view garden details. If you are visiting Bloomin Acres, you may wish to visit Sophie Thompson’s close-by garden at Mount Barker Springs that is open over this weekend.

Withdrawal of favourite gardens

The Beard Garden and Narrinyeri unfortunately will not be opening this season because of recent storm damage.  Gate Cottage at Mylor has also had to withdraw. We wish to thank the Garden Owners for all the work they have put in to preparing their gardens and hope they will be able to open in the future.

We have had fantastic support for the first 8 weekends of garden openings with people very pleased that Open Gardens is continuing.

 Well we are up and running
Wednesday 1st September 2015

We had the launch of our inaugural season at St Austell on Sunday 23rd August which was officially opened by Nick Mitzevich, the Director of the Art Gallery of South Australia. Over the weekend of 29th and 30th August we had our first Members Only opening at the Gale Garden and the opening of our first two Open Gardens at Bellevue Succulent Garden at Bellevue Heights and the Looking Glass garden at Marino.

Our Chair Vick Winnall interviewed on ABC 891
Sunday 30th August 2015

ABC Adelaide 89.1’s Ashley Walsh and South Australian gardening guru Jon Lamb have been keen long term supporters of Open Gardens in South Australia. If you listen to Mornings with Ashley Walsh on 89.1 you would have heard this fantastic interview with our Chair Vick Winnall yesterday morning. Here is the interview via a link which would make great listening on the way to one of our gardens.…/a-new-era-for-open-gardens-in-sa.…

The Advertiser features our Open Gardens
Saturday 29th August 2015 

Today’s Advertiser features a great story on our open gardens. The Looking Glass and the Bellevue Succulent Gardens are our first gardens to open for this season. Deb Bogle’s column in the SAWeekend Magazine has some great information. Please click on the 2015/16 season tab above to view upcoming gardens and visit our Facebook page.


OGSA in the Spring Edition of SA Gardens
Thursday 20th August 2015

Still counting down ….9…8 days until our first gardens open!!! You can read all about it in the new Spring edition of SA Gardens which features some great highlights of our upcoming season and also a story and photo of the brilliant new Open Gardens SA committee. These are just some of the people who helped get the new show on the road here in South Australia along with a great team of selectors and our always hard working garden owners. We salute you! Here is a sneak peek … There’s much more to see in the mag including a full spring season calendar!

Open Gardens SA's photo.

Thursday 6th August 2015

Carrick Hill has set up a permanent Australian Garden Museum and each year the museum will present different stories defining Australian gardening history. The first project of the AGM is an exhibition called “Endless Pleasure : The art of gardens and gardening.”

This exhibition evokes through art, books, garden implements and ornaments some of the “Endless Pleasure” and delight that people have taken in gardens and gardening in Australia over the past 250 years.

In addition, Trevor Nottle, one of the committee members of Open Gardens SA, has written a beautifully produced book entitled “Endless Pleasures – Exploring and collecting among the byways of gardens and gardening” to accompany the exhibition. Please click on the following Wakefield Press site to view and place an order.

'Author, plant collector and Open Gardens South Australia committee member Trevor Nottle at the Carrick Hill launch last week. The book is now available for order by contacting Carrick Hill and would make an excellent Christmas present for the eager gardener in any family.'

The exhibition is at Carrick Hill from 5th August – 29th November 2015

We are very pleased to tell you that Carrick Hill has made a special “Two for the price of one” offer to all members of Open Gardens SA. Entry fees are as follows:
House Entry $12.00 ; Concession $8.00 ; Family $28.00

Please show your Open Gardens SA membership card at the entrance to take advantage of this generous offer.

Friday 17th July 2015

Opening – Sat 10th and Sun 11th October  – Mount Barker

Tickletank, the home and garden of artist and gardener Irene Pearce has delighted and inspired thousands of visitors over many years. This intimate garden is wrapped closely around a number of concrete water storage tanks which Irene herself has transformed into a quirky but comfortable home, decorated with her colourful mosaics and creative artwork made from recycled objects. The garden also features innovative ideas, recycled objects and a marvellous mosaic driveway which adds permanent colour to an already colourful display of hardy cottage perennials and self seeding annuals mixed with Australian native plants and succulents.


Monday 15th June 2015

All our hard work has over the last 6 months has culminated with the release of the 2015/16 Season. Please click on the 2015/16 Season tab above to view the first of more than 60 wonderful gardens that will be opening for the Inaugural OGSA Season. We are indebted to the generosity of our Garden Openers who will be sharing their gardens with the people of South Australia. We are so pleased that the concept of Open Gardens will continue in our State. The complete season will be listed over the next month.

Opening Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th November 2015

Another Sneak Peek from the new Open Gardens SA.

More than 500 roses flowering is something to see – and smell! Most of those planted on the fertile valley soil at Gate Cottage, Mylor are perfumed so at their peak in spring there is both the spectacle and the scent of tens of thousands of flowers to excite the senses!

This is definitely not a formal rose garden! Crammed amongst the roses are pretty, old fashioned perennials and annuals – many have self-sown or strayed onto pathways giving a romantic country garden look. Delphiniums, daylilies, Shasta daisies, verbascum, penstemons, alstroemeria, Irish bells, love in the mist and the odd vegie or herb add to the eclectic mix.

Come along on Nov 14-15th when the garden will be open and take time to smell the roses.



Opening Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th October 2015

Another Season Sneak Peek . Lovely and colourful and beautifully maintained and manicured, The Gates garden is filled with roses and iris in beds bordered by clipped box hedges and a good collection of succulents displayed in pots. A pergola area houses ferns, fuchsias, begonias and large pots of water iris and fish. Many cottage plants and climbing roses add colour. Visitors will be surprised at what they find behind The Gates.

The gates

Opening for our Inaugural Season

Here is a sneak peek of another amazing garden soon to open as part of the inaugural season of Open Gardens SA … The Garden of Eccentrix at Crafers. Lynn Elzinga-Henry is an artist and as you are drawn through her large informal hills garden everywhere there is evidence of her creative genius. Blue and white ceramic tiles, colourful glass birds, stainless steel cornucopias and garden sculptures are carefully placed against a tapestry of flowers and foliage. Even the trees and hedges are pruned to draw attention to their naturally striking sculptural forms against the green backdrop of their leaves.

Interestingly most of this garden was destroyed in the 1983 bushfire but a huge English oak protected the house from the fire and although it was severely scorched and lost all its leaves, it miraculously regenerated the following spring and now provides dense cool shade for tender plants and a lesson for others living in bushfire prone areas of the hills. Following the fire, the garden has been extensively re developed using rocks dug from the soil and bricks and pavers abandoned by the previous owner to create terraces and walls.

Water is used sparingly and most of the ornamental plants are of Mediterranean or Australian origin, chosen because of their tolerance to hot dry summers but adapted also to the cool wet winters. Committed to organic gardening Lynn and Rob continue to experiment with growing and using a wide variety of productive plants including crab apples, berries, quinces, edible flowers, leaves and hips for eating, preserving and wine making.


Opening in Spring 2015

Have you ever wondered what’s behind the huge hedge beside the huge old gum tree on Glynburn Road, Kensington Gardens? A gracious grand old house sits amidst nearly 2 acres of beautifully maintained ornamental and productive gardens – there are lawns, a small orchard, massive old trees, hedges, historic (but sadly now empty) bird aviaries, outbuildings, a tennis court and huge swimming pool.
Fruit trees including some unusual varieties are everywhere and although there are some beds dedicated to veggies, others are planted or have just popped up amongst the many roses and other flowering plants. And they are all grown organically – the owners are totally committed to a chemical-free way of life. St Austell is the name of the property and therein lies a story. The Reid family has lived there for around 40 years, but it was only recently, when the descendants of previous owners unexpectedly returned an ornate name plate, that they discovered what their property was called.
St Austell will open this Spring with afternoon teas, organic food and wine tasting, organic cosmetic demonstrations and much more! Just another of our stunning gardens opening under the new Open Gardens SA. We will be giving you a chance to preview  forthcoming gardens for the 2015/16 season on facebook
Opening in October 2015
“The Garden at Wilpena Street” in Eden Hills is another stunning property that will be opening for our 2015/16 season. This is a romantic English style garden using lines and terraced rooms to transform the sloping block. There are beautiful stone walls and steps, clipped hedges, a courtyard with a fountain and a fishpond. It features a lawn walk between herbaceous borders in a riot of purples, pinks and whites. There is a vegetable garden, fruit trees, a greenhouse, chooks and a beehive. A garden we look forward to visiting for another gorgeous high tea on the lawn.
The programme for this season’s Open Gardens will be posted on our website in June and we will be reminding you on Facebook of the forthcoming openings.
Opening in August 2015
We are pleased that the “Bellevue Heights Succulent Garden” will be opening as part of our forthcoming season. Paul Arbon looks after the succulents at the Adelaide Botanic Gardens so little wonder his own garden is full of amazing species. At the moment a flowering Agave geminiflora is the highlight – literally as the flower stalk is at least 3.5metres tall! This plant takes about 10 years to flower but is worth waiting for – hundreds of tiny flowers start opening at the base of the stalk and over a period of several weeks open up the stem. Sadly the plant is monocarpic and it dies when the flowering is finished.
But there will be plenty more to see when the garden is open in August this year. By then the many different aloes will be flowering, as will the salvias, and other Mediterranean and Australian native plants. The yuccas, the terrestrial bromeliads, and many other succulents and cacti always look sensational even now at the end of such a long dry summer – a good lesson on planting a garden that suits our harsh Adelaide climate. You can have a look at the garden at:
Opening in September 2015
We are pleased to announce that “Gable Ends’ at Mitcham will be opening this spring. This delightful multi-level garden compliments a heritage listed 1945 stone house. There are lovely old elms interspersed with sustainable species against a back drop of eucalypts and other Australian natives, Judas trees, rose arbours and wisteria. There is an attractive iron front fence, terracotta edgings, dry stone walls and garden sculptures. We will be posting our Open Garden SA calendar for the 2015/16 season on our web page and on facebook in June this year. Every week up until then we will be giving you a preview of up and coming gardens as they are entered into the programme.
Opening in Spring this year
Our garden selectors have been busy viewing and reviewing gardens. We are pleased to announce that “Ashgrove Iris Garden” at Gumeracha will be opening in the 2015/16 season. This beautiful garden has been created and developed from a bare cow paddock over the past 25 years. The garden features over 850 named varieties of Tall Bearded Iris, 200 roses, deciduous trees and shrubs, hydrangeas, camellias, many bulbs, and a variety of native bird attracting plants. Water features and large urns have been placed in the garden to provide focal points of interest. Ashgrove Iris Garden is a relaxed country style garden which is attractive to the local birds and small wildlife, and even the occasional visiting Koala. A garden visit not to be missed!
Click here to download






Monday 2nd March 2015

‘Tipsy Hill’ will open to the public for OGA on the weekend of March 14 & 15, 2015 from 10am-4.30pm. Tickets available at the entrance. Proceeds of ticket sales to go to the newly formed Open Gardens SA Inc. Parking on site at 309 Blewitt Springs Road, McLaren Vale



Open garden picture 1

Saturday 21st February 2015

Ashley Walsh and John Lamb on ABC 891 Talkback Gardening interviewed Tony Fox from Natural Resources, Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges (AMLRNR) on the topic of bushfire recovery. The interview is available as a Podcast at:

Tony pointed out that some trees are adapted to fire (xantherea, certain eucalypts and wattles) and recover quickly providing early habitat and food for birds animals and insects whereas exotics (azaleas) do not fare well and one may chose not to replant these varieties. There are factsheets available from AMLRNR on garden design to reduce fire impact and information concerning the Sampson Flat fires at:

Sunday 1st February 2015

An exhibition by talented South Australian Sculptors Anna Small and Warren Pickering has opened at Fox Creek Winery in McLaren Vale. Their works in metal are visually stunning throughout the gardens of the winery and in the tasting rooms. Anna and Warren have an interest in exploring backyard ecosystems and the relationships between the living elements present there. You may have seen their work in several Open Gardens in this state.

The Exhibition is open from February 2nd to 31st March 2015. Well worth a trip to the Vale. Fox Creek Cellar Door is at 90 Malpas Road McLaren Vale


Comments are closed.