Friends of the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden Port Augusta Incorporated


The Friends of the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden Port Augusta, Incorporated

NEWS RELEASE: 09-09-1998


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John Zwar

Ph (08) 867 0324 ah


Gwen Leane

Ph (08) 8643 6191


Alison Daw

Ph (08) 8642 2748 ah.


Bernie Haase

Ph (08) 8641 1443 ah
Ph (08) 8641 1049 w


The Eremophila Festival is the first such event organised by the Friends, and will be held at the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden on Saturday 19th September from 11.00am to 4.00pm. It will take the place of the Friends September meeting. The aim is to promote the AALBG by having a range of stalls displaying and selling items relating to plants, botany and the outback. There will be food outlets as well. Regular guided tours of the Garden will be provided and videos featuring flora, water conservation and growing plants in arid Australia will be shown in the WMC Herbarium/Meeting Room. There will be the opportunity to see the developing Garden at its best, see the fine interpretive displays and buildings on site, and inspect the excellent range of Australian gifts, books and souvenirs in the Garden Shop, as well as sample the food and drinks offered in the Gardens Bluebush Café!

Details of the days events are as follows:-

  • Time - 10.00am to 4.00pm, Saturday 19th September, 1998 - official opening 11.00am.
  • Entry: Free
  • Guided tours of the Garden on the hour, 11.00am - 4.00pm, commencing from the Visitor Information Building.
  • Videos on arid lands flora, gardening & environment continuously showing in the WMC Herbarium/Meeting Room
  • Food stalls: Steak sandwiches; Sandwiches & sausages; Ice creams; Tea & Coffee; to compliment the fare available in the Bluebush Café.
  • Gift & Plant stalls: Pinery Nursery (EREMOPHILAS); Australian Crafts; Wood Turning; Arid Land Growers; Curdnatta Art Gallery; Friends plant and souvenir stall; the AALBG shop's Australian made gifts, souvenirs, clothing & books.
  • Displays: Trees for Life; Australian Quandong Industry Association and more.

The Eremophila Festival will be a show case of what has been achieved in the Garden after seventeen years of dedication and effort.

Please make an effort to visit the Garden on this day if you are in the Port Augusta region, and don't forget to tell family and friends about this event. Of course a visit to the Garden anytime is recommended! Many Port Augusta residents and some travellers who pass the Garden often, call in and visit the Garden again and again to enjoy refreshments in the Café and the beautiful peaceful surroundings.
Enquiries: Gwen Lean; Alison Daw; or Morry Vile - ph 8642 2021.

This event was held on 25th July at the Garden. Our Guest Speaker, Dr Ursula Ewald from the University of Heidelberg in Germany gave two well attended and most interesting presentations on the day. The first, "Colonial Heritage and Horticulture: the case for the Americas", at 11.00am, was followed by a break for lunch and a walk in the Garden. The AGM commenced at 1.30pm and reports presented by Bernie Hasse, President John Zwar and treasurer's report, prepared by Alison Daw. The election of officers followed. Dr Ewald's second presentation, "Horticultural Exhibitions in Germany", followed. This was the first time that we had scheduled two presentations on the one day and it was most successful. Dr Ewald spent some time undertaking research at libraries in Adelaide during August. During this time she was unexpectedly diagnosed as having a serious illness and returned to Germany recently for medical treatment. I join all Friends in wishing Ursula a complete and speedy recovery. We enjoyed meeting her and hearing about some of her work and experiences. Thanks to Pauline Schiller too for providing transport for Ursula to our meeting, and for keeping in touch with her and providing companionship during her stay in Adelaide.

If you would like to join other Friends from all over SA and assist by propagating seedlings for the Garden, we can provide seed, growing kits including soil and containers and advice. To date almost all plants in the garden have been propagated or purchased by the Friends. Please contact Bernie Haase if keen to be involved or for more information.


This has been scheduled for November 28th with Dean Nicolle of Flinders University as guest Speaker. Dean has recently published an excellent book "Eucalypts of South Australia", describing and illustrating in colour the 95 Eucalyptus species native to the state. He is also owner/curator of Currency Creek Arboretum, a specialist eucalypt research centre south of Adelaide, where approximately 750 eucalypt species are in cultivation, including every species from South Australia. Dean's presentation will focus on eucalypts from the arid zone.

THE FRIENDS CHRISTMAS DINNER will follow Dean's presentation. Details will be provided in the next News Release.

Some Friends volunteers continue to assist Bernie with a range of tasks in the Garden, including weeding and label making. If you are in a position to offer occasional or even regular assistance, contact Bernie. He will be delighted to accept help. If you have special skills tell Bernie so that they can be used to advantage to further develop the Garden. Should you be able to help on a regular basis, you may like to be allocated an area as yours to maintain.

John Zwar (Pres); Morry Vile (V. Pres); Gwen Leane (Sec); Alison Daw (Treas) & Pauline Schiller; Fay Poole; Bruce Leane; Bernie Haase; Julie Franks; Bill Daniels.

News Briefs:

  • The Friends have offered $5,000 to the AALBG Board for building one of a series of interpretive shelters in the Garden. The Port Augusta Bird Club is also interested in this project and may build a shelter which incorporates a bird hide near a water point in the Garden. Bird life in the Garden is a feature which attracts many visitors.
  • Some Port Augusta based Committee members recently hosted a visit and provided guided tours of the Garden for members of the Society for growing Australian Plants from Victor Harbor.
  • The Friends have commissioned a video showing the Garden site more than ten years ago and developments to date. We hope this will be available for showing at the Eremophila Festival.
  • Subs are now due, $8.00 single & $10.00 family or institutional membership. Please forward to Treasurer Alison Daw. Donations (tax deductible) are always greatly appreciated.

Issued 09.09.1998 by John Zwar, President, The Friends of the Australian Arid Lands Botanic Garden, Port Augusta Inc., PO Box 2040, Port Augusta SA 5700, Ph (08) 8671 0324 ah. Fax C/- (08) 8671 0179


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