Twenty years ago, Alowyn Gardens in the Yarra Valley, was an old sheep paddock. Today this 4 acres of land is an absolute wonderland full of surprises behind high hedges. Of course, I was keen to see the roses and I wasn’t disappointed. At the end of the colourful perennial border I found Grace and Best Friend, surrounding the central fountain, the David Austin Mary Rose was in bloom and an impressive bed of Rugosas were a mass of plump rose hips. A delight of climbing roses covered arches and arbours with Pierre de Ronsard and Lady Hillingdon making an appearance.


Roses aside, there is a breath taking formal Parterre garden with perfectly trimmed box hedges of calligraphic splendour, a Wisteria arbour which begs a return visit in October, an Edible Garden which was producing container loads of fresh berries, and is home to the Great Pumpkin Festival in Autumn. There is so much more to explore, and I will leave some surprises for you to discover yourself. I felt like I had stepped into another world and I look forward to returning and experiencing other seasons in the garden, with my sketchbook in hand.


Alowyn Gardens at 1210 Melba Highway, Yarra Glen, Victoria is open 7 days per week 10am to 5pm (but closes at 4pm some weekends for weddings), and is closed Christmas Day and the 26th and 27th December).