Robyn Rolfe and Timo Sihvola are Toowoomba Garden for Good’s first applicants. They own Ainslie Gardens, which has previously won both Champion and Reserve Champion Country Garden, in the previous incarnation of Garden for Good, The Chronicle Garden Competition. The pair have owned the property for the past five years and are passionate gardeners.
The garden spans across more than three acres with two large fountains, a life-size tiger and cub statue, Chinese chairs, lanterns and figurines, two expansive rose gardens, topiary elephants, gazebos and purebred poultry. There is also a large dam with a jetty, some unique conifer trees and beautiful ornamental peach tree flowers in all shades of pink. The cercis trees with their tiny pink flowers, and the massive Manchurian pear tree overlooking the dam are breathtaking in spring.
Ms Rolfe said she chose to apply to this year’s GARDEN FOR GOOD because it is a good way to safely showcase the region’s gardens. If chosen as one of the 10 featured gardens Ms Rolfe has nominated the National Breast Cancer Foundation because the pair “know too many people affected by this disease.”
The Chronicle Garden for Good will be a digital showcase of some of Toowoomba’s unique and vibrant gardens and allows the public to participate by donating funds to the featured gardener’s charity of choice.
Erika Brayshaw, General Manager at The Chronicle said one of the main objectives of the program was to cultivate kindness and support those in need in these difficult times. “For more than 70 years, outstanding gardening has been championed through The Chronicle Garden Competition. It was launched in 1949 when times were tough, and the paper decided that a community focus on the city’s gorgeous gardens would give everyone a lift. And it did!”
“Fast forward to 2020 and challenging times are back, which is why it’s time to plant some seeds of positivity. The annual event has been reimagined as a joyful celebration that recognises green-thumbed talent while raising funds for those doing it tough,” she said. “The beauty of Garden for Good is that the registration process is simple, and gardens of any size, shape and type can be entered, whether you have a garden that’s on country cottage acreage, purely Australian natives or even a balcony garden, you can participate.”
In September, the stories behind 10 of the region’s unique gardens will be shared on the virtual Garden for Good hub, with garden-lovers to donate to nominated charities as a gesture of kindness, care and positivity.
HOW IT WORKS – REGISTRATION IS EASY:
- Go to www.thechronicle.com.au/gardenforgood
- Upload details about your garden, 3 images of your garden and a few words on what makes it so special
- Nominate a charity you’d like to support
From the applications, 10 gardens will be selected to feature on the virtual Garden for Good hub, launching Monday, September 7. Applications close on Sunday, August 9. COVID-safe restrictions mean that gardens will not be open to visitors this year, but the beauty of the region’s unique gardens will still feature on the Garden for Good virtual hub. #gardenforgood
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