Wattle Woods Tour

Wattles (Acacias) are huge, brittle Australian trees, and are some of the tallest on the property. The garden I created underneath them was sensibly called the Wattle Woods. Paths wind and wiggle through the dappled shade, edged with green foliage plants, with humble wooden seats to relax on.

The edge of the garden is sunny, and summer roses jostle here with flaxes, large grasses, and Nicotiana sylvestris. Under the dappled shade you'll enjoy the Camellias and the Rhododendrons, plus a host of delightful New Zealand native evergreens.

Winter storms can cause high branches to break off, and from time to time a whole tree has to be felled. I'm worried that in time the Wattle Woods will, strictly speaking, have to lose its plural. You'd better visit now, while there's at least one Wattle tree to admire!

Wattle Woods ImagesWattle Woods Images...
The heart of the Wattle Woods lies in its trees, though, sadly, there are only five large Wattles left standing, whioe the tall Eucaluptus trees are growing even taller. Here are my most recent photographs of its interior...
Introducing the Wattle WoodsIntroducing the Wattle Woods...
I created the Wattle Woods Garden on the edge of a sheep paddock, grazed by the very first Moosey sheep. They would laze in the shade of the huge trees, enriching the soil with their manure. The sheep were banished, and I started digging...
River PumpsRiver Pumps...
It's winter, and my two bright orange river pumps have been hauled out of the water for some maintenance. The swivel couplings need replacing. I knew that!Using the force of the flowing water in the irrigation race, my river pumps swish water down a wriggling stream in the Wattle Woods...
Flowers behind the Glass-HouseFlowers behind the Glass-House...
Years ago some red dahlias were dumped in-between the potting tables behind the Moosey Glass-House. They decided they liked it here. No problem! I did mean to plant them back in the garden, but... Then a soft orange dahlia appeared, from nowhere. And then a hollyhock, brilliantly pink.
Rugosa Roses in the Wattle WoodsRugosa Roses in the Wattle Woods...
My first 'collection' of rugosa roses was planted early in the creation of the Wattle Woods gardens, just down the slope from the Glass-House. A small path wiggles through, and there's a rickety archway to keep the roses from falling over.
Waterwheel and StreamWaterwheel and Stream...
A home-made waterwheel used to lift water from the water race to form a small stream, which then wriggled and jiggled its way down the back of the Wattle Woods. I loved the soft, sloshy noises the waterwheel made - and, of course, the running water.
Wattle Woods Flaxes (Phormiums)Wattle Woods Flaxes (Phormiums)...
When I'm by the pond I can see the sweeping curve of the Wattle Woods, and enjoy the New Zealand flaxes (Phormiums) planted on the edge by the lawn. These brilliant foliage plants have always played an important part in the style of the Moosey garden - it's heart-warming to be able to enjoy so much greenery in winter.
Glass-House GardenGlass-House Garden...
In the winter of 2006 I had a brilliant garden idea. The Glass-House would be much happier with a proper garden embracing it. It would be flowery and colourful, and feel connected to the water race nearby. What a caring, thoughtful Head Gardener!
Head Gardener in the Glass-HouseHead Gardener in the Glass-House...
The glass-house is a peaceful place for a gardener. I can't hear the phone, but my cats can still find me.
Glass-House Garden BenchesGlass-House Garden Benches...
Two rather oddly sized garden benches sit on the edge of the lawn either side of the Moosey glass-house. They are perfect for placing garden tools, gardening gloves, etc. on - and, of course, for a gentle rest in the shade. But...
Wintering OverWintering Over...
The glass-house in winter is always full of half hardy plants wintering over. The Moosey winter garden gets chilly, frosty mornings, and pelargoniums and daisies in particular wouldn't always survive.
Glass-House Garden RosesGlass-House Garden Roses...
The Glass-House Garden started out filled with easy-grow perennials and shrubs like Hebes, Lavateras, red Cordylines, and Ake Ake. I liked this busy look, but the garden was so sunny and sheltered - perfect for roses. Hee hee - a temptation I just couldn't resist.
Wattle Woods CamelliasWattle Woods Camellias...
All the Camellias in the Wattle Woods are planted in a gentle arc, starting from the back of the glass-house. They are all rejects, given a new lease of garden life at Mooseys. Can plants show gratitude? These particular shrubs seem to know how to!
Wattle Woods Garden BenchWattle Woods Garden Bench...
At the back end of the glass-house is a garden bench made from a railway sleeper and two columns of bricks. It faces the water race, and the garden behind is full of Camellias. This is a delightful place to sit in all seasons.
Spring in the Wattle WoodsSpring in the Wattle Woods...
The winter of 2006 marked a huge change for the Wattle Woods Garden. Most of the huge Wattle trees were destroyed by a particularly wet snow storm. Suddenly there was sunshine, light, and more garden space for the Rhododendrons and Camellias to enjoy.
Wattle Woods Garden PathsWattle Woods Garden Paths...
The Wattle Woods is a large garden, and needs quite an extensive network of paths. The main path weaves underneath the large wattle and gum trees, through waves of Renga Renga (Rocklilies) and Japanese Iris.
Wattle Tree DamageWattle Tree Damage...
One wintry week in July 2006 we experienced a different type of snow storm. Wet, heavy snow in the evergreen trees caused much damage. Crack! Crack! The Wattle Woods were falling down!
Dog in the Wattle WoodsDog in the Wattle Woods...
Rusty the dog loves zooming through the network of paths in the Wattle Woods. He's well behaved, though, and never cuts the corners - even when he's chasing a bumble bee or a bird.
My Glass-HouseMy Glass-House...
My glass-house is situated on the back lawn near the Wattle Woods, almost underneath the trees. The burbling water race is nearby.
Red RoseRed Rose...
One summer early in the Wattle Woods history I dug out some old roses from a friend's garden and moved them into the country. This red rose came with hardly any roots - yet it has survived!
Rugosa Rose HipsRugosa Rose Hips...
In the middle of summer my Rugosa roses by the glass-house garden have already formed red rose hips, as well as starting to flower again. The Rugosa rose in this close-up photograph is possibly Frau Dagmar Hastrup.
Wrong Place for RhododendronsWrong Place for Rhododendrons...
This extension to the upper Wattle Woods Garden was one of my biggest garden mistakes. Rhododendrons will not grow under Wattles, and since this archive photograph was taken the poor suffering plants have been shifted twice to try out new homes.
Hellebore GardenHellebore Garden...
At the top of the Wattle Woods I have a shaded garden where I grow lots of Hellebores. Their flower colours are creams and dull pinky-reds. They make a beautiful mass display in winter.
Acacia - Wattle TreesAcacia - Wattle Trees...
The Wattle Woods started life with a number of Wattle, or Acacia, trees. But gradually over the years there's been wind and snow damage, and several have crashed to the ground...
Wattle Trees - Flowers and Seed PodsWattle Trees - Flowers and Seed Pods...
The Australian Wattle trees (or Acacias) near the fence-line flower right in the middle of winter, with cheery yellow flowers. My goodness, they look stunning - especially to a colour-starved gardener. And later on they produce artistic seed-pods.
Shady Garden BenchShady Garden Bench...
The Wattle Woods garden bench, deep in the shade of the Wattle trees, is a place for calm meditation. It's surrounded by mass plantings of Renga Renga and Japanese Iris. Overhead the huge trees give welcome shade in summer.
Iris JaponicaIris Japonica...
Iris Japonica, also called Japanese Iris, is a foliage plant that I use everywhere. I can transplant it at any time of year, and within weeks it will be established. My Iris Japonica has bright bluish white flowers in spring.
Iris Leaf Insect Close-UpIris Leaf Insect Close-Up...
Here is another insect photograph of an unknown bug sitting on a green Iris Japonica leaf. My photographer son insists on spending time and money stalking these wee critters.
Glass-House Garden CatGlass-House Garden Cat...
Sifter the tabby cat often used to come out to the glass-house to enjoy the winter sun. Here he is sunbathing on the bench in the middle of the plastic pots.
Gardening Coffee CupGardening Coffee Cup...
It's one of my new blue and white gardening coffee cups, and it's gone cold. I often bring a drink out to the glass-house and then forget to drink it.
Cotinus & MiscanthusCotinus & Miscanthus...
The seed heads and autumn colours of these shrubs are lit up in the afternoon sun. The Wattle Woods are behind in shadow. The plants in this photograph are a Cotinus, a Miscanthus grass and a Rugosa rose.
CommelinaCommelina...
These bright blue bulbs are summer flowering, and are in the garden by the glass-house. I've never known much about them, so I've checked with Wikipedia. Looks like my Commelinas, or Asiatic dayflowers, are Commelina communis, the best known species in the West.
ChrysanthemumsChrysanthemums...
There's a riot of colour in Autumn as the sedums and chrysanthemums which are planted in front of the glass-house door erupt in colour. When the sedums are in flower I have to run the bee gauntlet to get in and out.