Landscape park gardens

“Landscapes should be resilient, engaging and healthy urban, regional and rural environments, designed in balance with natural and cultural systems.”

Vision statement of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects

This is a larger, typically landscape-scale, garden that presents an idealised view of nature, using and 'enhancing' the natural topography of the land. The origins of the style are in the United Kingdom, with its rolling hills and many streams, and it is associated with designers such as Laurence ‘Capability’ Brown. Acreages around the Berry area are often landscaped in this style, although landowners are working with very different soils and vegetation.

A landscape park garden may include streams, lakes or water features, sweeps of lawn or meadows, groves of trees, gravelled walks, shrubberies, planted garden beds and picturesque architectural features. It does not generally feature highly formal flower beds or pruned plants, as the aim is a broadly naturalistic look, but there’s no reason not to include them where they enhance a view or create an interesting contrast. After all, Roman ruins are hardly ‘natural’ in the Australian landscape!

While Australian landscape park gardens often employ plants from other parts of the world, an adaptation of the concept to the local context would prioritise working with native species.

Some plants to consider include:
Large trees for groves
White Beech (Gmelina leichhardtii)
Magnificent rainforest tree with pale green leaves and interesting flowers and purple fruit
Red Cedar (Toona ciliata)
Iconic tall, deciduous rainforest tree with reddish new growth in spring
Bolly Gum (Litsea reticulata)
Tall tree with a straight, mottled trunk and rounded crown
Lilly Pilly (Acmena smithii)
Large tree with reddish-brown trunk and attractive leaves, flowers and fruit
Deciduous Fig (Ficus superba var. henneana)
One of four large local fig species, all of which can be a striking feature in a forest grove on acreage
Spotted Gum (Corymbia maculata)
Large gum tree with distinctive mottled bark
Woollybutt (Eucalyptus longifolia)
Medium to large gum tree with semi-weeping foliage
Coast White Box (Eucalyptus quadrangulata)
Large and beautiful gum tree that can be found in rainforest
Smaller understorey trees

Whalebone Tree (Streblus brunonianus)
Tough small-leafed tree that can be pruned to maintain a shrub form; full sun or part shade
Black Apple (Planchonella australis)
Medium tree of 8m to 15m with large, tasty fruit; full sun or part shade
Tree Heath (Trochocarpa laurina)
Shrub or small tree to 4m, but smaller if kept pruned, attractive pinkish new growth; part shade
Featherwood (Polyosma cunninghamii)
Small tree with pretty pale green toothed leaves and black fruit; shade
Grey Myrtle (Backhousia myrtifolia)
Small or mid-sized tree that starts out shrubby; full sun or part shade
Brush Bloodwood (Baloghia inophylla)
Small tree with large dark green leaves and grey bark that weeps a red sap when scratched; shade

Many shrubs, annuals and grasses of the region would also be at home in landscape park gardens, and can be chosen according to your preferences and the conditions on the property. For example, if there is a stream running through the property, plants that grow in riparian areas will usually be suitable. 

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