John Bentley, President of the Friends of Melton Botanic Garden visited the Southern Highlands last weekend and met SHBG directors Chris Blaxland and Barry Barford on site. Melton Botanic Garden is a 12-year old garden situated 40km west of Melbourne and presenting flora very different from SHBG. Their collections include a Eucalyptus Arboretum and a South African Garden, with emphasis on dryland plants. John explained that they have had about 250mm of rain this year. Southern Highlands residents will recall having that much rain in a few days recently!
Chris and John went on to attend the 7th Congress of the Botanic Gardens Australia New Zealand Inc (BGANZ) in Wollongong. The theme of this year’s congress was Connecting with Communities, highlighting the many ways in which botanic gardens across Australia and New Zealand play an important role in the environments in which we live through partnerships, joint ventures, sharing, outreach work and advocacy.