You expect to see botanic gardens of this calibre in main centers, but not out in the middle of nowhere. It comes as a real surprise... an almost deserted country road with nothing but scrub, a few stunted gum trees and the odd emu browsing along the roadside. Surely not the sort of place you expect to stumble across a world class botanic garden, right?
But this is not some outback heat induced illusion. It's real, and can be found down on the NSW and Victorian border, only 10 minutes drive from the main Sunraysia center of Mildura.
Star of the gardens (for me) is of course the roses. With over 1600 specimens planted, it's going to take some time to see everything. Plenty of old favorites on display - Just Joey, Dublin Bay, Blue Moon, Golden Bunny and Fresia to name just a few. But also a lot of the less well known heritage roses.
For example, when was the last time you saw a mass planting of that wonderful Noisette, Crépuscule? So lovely, I had to put a couple of pictures on the homepage.
Of course, there is a lot more than roses on display here. There are a number of themed gardens, with plant collections from around the world. Australian natives predominate (as you would expect), and there is a really nice collection from "across the ditch" - New Zealand ;-) Entry is free, but donations are gratefully received, and can be placed into the box at the entrance to the gardens.
A slideshow of some roses at the gardens... these are not named but I'm sure you will recognize some of your favorites here. Enjoy!
If you want to contact somebody associated with the gardens, then you can do that via their website. For those planning on visiting the garden, then the map below should be enough to get you there. It's really not too hard to find! If you are going during the heat of the day, then be sure to bring sunscreen, drink and perhaps an umbrella. It gets extremly hot here during the summer months, with temperatures often knocking close to or even exceeding 40c (around 100deg F).
If the heat starts to wear you down, then don't worry. There is a delightful café in the center of the gardens, where you can get some shade and a cold drink.