Sunday, 11 September 2016

Springtime tulips at Araluen Botanic Park, Western Australia

Araluen Botanic Park
It's spring in the southern hemisphere, and David and I are in Western Australia - famous for its spring wildflowers. Western Australia conjures up images of red desert, barren gorges and rugged wilderness, but half an hour's drive from Perth we found Araluen Botanic Park.  Araluen is one of the state's best kept secrets. In a hidden valley, sheltered from the harsh West Australian sun, the park has a micro-climate perfect for tulips, camellias, rhododendrons, magnolias and roses.

From 20 August until 18 September, Araluen is celebrating its annual Springtime Festival with 125,000 tulips carpeting the park grounds in bursts of colour.  If you read my post on Canberra's Floriade festival last year you will know I have a soft spot for tulips. David has a soft spot for camellias - our garden at home is full of them - so we were both in flower heaven.

Araluen Botanic Park
Linda, who showed us around, told us this WWII army surplus truck once belonged to her father. In 1962 it got a flat tyre.  Linda's dad said 'One day I'll have to get around to fixing that' - well it is 2016 and he hasn't fixed it yet. It makes a great tulip bed though.

Araluen Botanic Park

The History of Araluen: -

Araluen was created in 1929 by J.J. 'Boss' Simons, a businessman and politician who founded a youth organisation known as the 'Young Australia League.' Members of the league and other volunteers created the pathways, roads and terraces many of which still exist throughout the park. In 1990 the park was purchased by the Government of Western Australia. From 1995 to 2010 it was managed by the Araluen Botanic Park Foundation which restored the gardens and opened them to the public. Although the park is now under the ultimate control of the Department of Environment and Conservation, the Foundation continues its work of restoring and improving the gardens.

Araluen Botanic Park
There is nothing quite like mass tulip plantings to give you that 'spring is here' feeling.
Araluen Botanic Park
Part of the central lawn area.
Tulips at Araluen Botanic Park




Araluen Botanic Park
As well as the more familiar varieties there were a few we had not seen before.

Camellias, rhododendrons, azaleas, magnolias and roses: -

Don't stress if you miss the mass tulip displays. They are stunning but so are the many other exotic species planted throughout the park. Araluen is particularly proud of its camellias. It is one of just 30 gardens around the world recognized by the International Camellia Society as a 'Camellia Garden of Excellence'.

We were too early in the year to see them flower, but Araluen also has one of the best collections of roses in Western Australia. Click here for information on when best to see the roses.

Araluen Botanic Park
It wasn't all about tulips - Linda was very keen to show us this magnolia.
Araluen Botanic Park
I struggle to understand David's obsession with camellias, but I have to confess that this is an almost perfect flower.

Araluen Botanic Park
I couldn't resist taking this photo.

Araluen Botanic Park

Tips and tricks and things to know: -



  • Araluen is 30 minutes drive from Perth. The park's address is 362 Croyden Rd, Roleystone, WA 6111.

When is it open?

  • Araluen is open every day of the year except Christmas Day. The park opens at 9 a.m and closes at 6 p.m except during June and July when it closes at 5 p.m.

How much is the admission  fee?

  • Admission costs $15 per adult and $7 per child (6 to 15 years old). Click here for the full list of prices.

How long does it take to see the park?

  • Plan on spending about two hours at the park. 

My tips: -

  • As you enter the park you arrive at an open lawn area. This is where the old truck, in my first photo, sits - don't spend your whole visit here. Explore the paths, walk up the hill and discover all the hidden, colourful corners. Some of the loveliest flowers are well away from the main area.
  • Araluen has 14 hectares of developed gardens. Wear comfortable shoes - the best way to see the park is by foot - but don't worry if you aren't especially mobile, there is a conducted tram tour ($5.00/adult $2.00/child).
  • Bring a picnic! Picnic tables and BBQ facilities are provided. There is also a cafe. Click here for details.
  • If you are lucky you may catch a glimpse of some of the local native wildlife. Kangaroos, wallabies, kookaburras, parrots and small reptiles all make the park their home.

Jo, a fellow blogger, at ZigaZag Blog has also posted a review of Araluen. For Jo's take on Araluen click - here .

Never miss a post - enter your email address in the 'Never miss a post: Follow by email' box in the right hand sidebar just below my profile picture.

Note: David and I received complimentary admission to Araluen.

31 comments:

  1. Your photos look fabulous Lyn. Now you can see why they call Araluen "Heaven in the Hills"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Did you go on Saturday? I recall you were talking about it.

      Delete
    2. Yes we did, it was a great way to spend a few hours wandering around

      Delete
  2. So many pretty flowers! I love all the colors of the tulips. Thanks for linking up with #TheWeeklyPostcard

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love tulips. I thought I would miss them this year because Western Australia is not a place I would have expected to find them.

      Delete
  3. What a great array of colors! I was kind of surprised to see you have tulips in Australia. I thought they require a different climate to grow, but apparently they found what they need in Araluen. I guess it's spring time there now, isn't it? Thanks for joining us for #TheWeeklyPostcard again, Lyn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As you slip into fall and your wonderful fall colours we are headed into spring and the beautiful flowers that go with it. There are quite a few places in the eastern states where tulips will grow but Western Australia has a much harsher climate. However there is a hidden corner of W.A in the south-west with a much milder climate than the north. David and I are on a road trip there so keep an eye out for lots more photos of flowers. You should see the wildflowers!

      Delete
  4. Love the beautiful flowers and look forward to see more. I know Western Australia is renowned for this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wildflowers are blooming everywhere. Just driving along we see them by the side of the road in magnificent colours.

      Delete
  5. What stunning tulips! Lyn, I really need to make it to Western Australia.

    Thanks for linking up with #wkendtravelinspiration!

    ReplyDelete
  6. The tulips are lovely. And while it is spring here in New Zealand, daffodils are about the only thing that is in bloom.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Looks like a great park .. I loved the bike with the flowers ..
    There used to be a similar one in Rocks ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. David and I are avid cyclists. We flew our bikes from Sydney with us on this trip, so I wasn't going to miss take a photo of that bike.

      Delete
  8. All are awesome shots Lyn but the top one does it for me.

    Combo of brutish truck and tulips creates a neat contrast ;)

    Ryan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha - that is my favourite too. The problem was everyone seemed to love the truck and it took about six shots before I could get the truck without people picnicking in the background,

      Delete
  9. Beautiful! I expect we will miss Springtime Tulips at Araluen Botanic on our 2 months in Australia, as we will be there March - April. Am I correct - no tulips when we visit?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry, you will be here in completely the wrong season but the good news is March April will be a great time to visit Sydney. Where are you going?

      Delete
  10. How lovely! Tulips are quite special.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I absolutely agree. Massed tulips are gorgeous. Sadly, I struggle to grow them at home because the possums like to eat them.

      Delete
  11. So funny looking at your photos of the tulips and spring, Lyn, as I am in Manitoba, Canada, and we are already feeling the first cool nights as fall kicks into high gear. I would LOVE to be in a place where summer is just beginning. Thx for the lovely post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Just jump on a plane - lol. You would be getting great autumn colours now though I imagine.

      Delete
  12. I haven't been to Araluen for years, however a friend went recently and they took the train around the gardens and said it was wonderful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is just lovely. If you go back try to explore on foot. The train is great but there is nothing like being able to 'stop and smell the flowers.'

      Delete
  13. The flowers are gorgeous. They remind me of the tulips in Amsterdam.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We went to Kuekenhof many years ago. It is hard to beat the tulips in Holland.

      Delete