Open Garden Munro Court Castlemaine

Open Gardens Victoria

September 10, 2016 - September 11, 2016



Open from 10am to 4.30pm Sat 10th and Sun 11th September 2016. Entry $10 (U/18 free).

Sam talks about the landscape design at 2pm Saturday. Indigenous plant sales.

Garden Notes: Eight sustainably-designed, low-impact houses sit around a small court. They are linked by gardens which have no front fences but provide maximum privacy via courtyards and well-placed windows, walls and tall shrubs. In a sense it is a continuous single garden, featuring hardy Australian plants native to the Goldfields of Central Victoria - predominantly wattles, bottlebrushes, bursarias, correas, mallees, prostrate myoporum, hop bushes, hakeas and grasses.

Deciduous ornamental grapevines cover pergolas which provides shade to north-facing windows in summer. Tall ironbarks and river red gums line the creek, across which, via large stone steps, are the vegetable garden, orchard, compost heap and hen house which are communally maintained with the produce shared.

Sam Cox designed and landscaped the gardens using large granite rocks, mulched planting mounds and water-permeable gravel paths. Marilyn Sprague of the Goldfields Revegetation Nursery in nearby Mandurang provided the plants - all chosen for hardiness for the cold frosty winters and extreme hot dry summers of Castlemaine.

The houses are small, low-impact and energy-smart. Local building designers Paul Hassall and Robyn Gibson of Lifehouse Design had to meet some stringent requirements for the project, including correct orientation, maximum natural light, double glazing, cross-ventilation, air-locks at front doors, solar hot water and photovoltaic cells on roofs. The build started in 2002 and the eight houses and a studio were completed by 2009. The court now houses 18 residents ranging in age from three to 93 years. 

For a picture gallery of Munro Court click here


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