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Queensland at its Blooming Best
11 Day Tour

Sunday 14 – Wednesday 24 October 2018

This quality tour is organised by the Canterbury Horticultural Society and guided by Gail Scrivener.


We will start in the Mooloolaba area then travel to Toowoomba and Mount Tamborine.

The private garden visits planned offer a huge variety of interest such as the beautiful Brindabella Country Gardens at Highfields Toowoomba. This 4 acre English Style garden just 25 years ago was a bare paddock. The Grays’ dream of the original concept; “A nursery in a garden” has been transformed into a magical display of fragrant roses , cottage perennials, and rare plant specimens all on view as you wander through the garden, blooming at its best in October.

We will also spend time at the Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve. This natural jewel of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland comprises 55 hectares of subtropical rainforest overlooking the Glass House Mountains National Landscape. Remnant of the rainforests that once covered the Blackall Range, the Reserve is a living museum diverse plant and animal life which will delight with its tranquillity and beauty.

Download the Tour Brochure




What’s Included

4* Accommodation
Return Airfares

11 Breakfasts
11 Morning Teas
1 Afternoon Tea
8 Lunches
9 Dinners

Tour Costs

$4,999 per person
$850 Single supplement per person

A deposit of $1000 is required for registration and to confirm your place by mid August 2018.
Limited numbers, please register early to secure your place.

Final payment due 7 September 2018
Costs subject to minimum number and currency fluctuations.


Landmark Resort Maloolaba
4 Nights – Landmark Resort is a 4.5 star resort in an amazing beachfront location in Mooloolaba, directly opposite the entrance to a safe, patrolled beach.

Ambassador Motor Inn Toowoomba
3 Nights – These well-appointed units offer a relaxed atmosphere with all the modern conveniences including internet, air conditioning, restaurant and pool.

The Manor Mt Tamborine 
3 Nights – The Manor’s split-level Victorian suites each offer a queen size bed, private balcony, ensuite, air conditioning, tennis court, swimming pool, sauna and spa!


11 Day Tour

Brisbane & Mooloolaba (MT, L, D)
On arrival we will be met by our driver and guide from ”Mystic Mountain Tours.” We will enjoy a short city sightseeing tour around Brisbane before stopping at the Roma Street Gardens for refreshments and a walk. After leaving the city we head north to Eden Gardens Nursery & Café for lunch. After lunch we continue our journey to Mooloolaba with time to settle in and maybe take a walk on the beach before dinner at the Surf Club.

Noosa (B, MT, L)
After Breakfast we will travel north to Noosa in time to be picked up at 9.30am from “Habitat Noosa” for a leisurely day which includes an Everglades Cruise and BBQ lunch. Late afternoon we will re board our coach for a sightseeing tour of Noosa before returning to Mooloolaba. This evening is leisure time. Dinner is not included.

Emundi, Cooroy, Buderim (B, MT, L, D)
This morning we travel to Eumundi, taking a stroll around the small town before enjoying the hospitality of Cheryl and Bob Boyd at their garden Stringybark Cottage. Our next visit is to Cooroy where Libby Murphy will show case her garden. Here we will enjoy lunch and have an opportunity to view the woollen products that Libby’s business makes – doonas, pillows and all sorts of other small items. Early afternoon we travel to Buderim and visit Barb and Rex Wickes’s garden, and enjoy light refreshments before returning to Mooloolaba.

Barbara and Rex Wickes moved to their property in Buderim, Brisbane in May 1998 with the only existing garden being a Murraya hedge and a few sundry plantings. The house has a northerly outlook with the site sloping gently from the house to a small dam that overflowed into a creek. The challenge was to create a cottage style garden surrounding a formal Mediterranean home.

Michael Bligh, a garden designer from Goulburn gave advice and confidence to use a central axis from the centre of the outdoor living area with the stone steps edging the oval lawn leading to a circular garden bed surrounded by gravel paths. Across the dam the eye can focus on a feature tree. The dry-stone walls are built with stone from the Glasshouse Mountains. The dam was widened and a dry creek bed cut to take run off. The fill from the dam was used to build up beds and level low areas. A grove of tropical birch was planted and the garden beds and paths were marked.

The construction and planting of the garden was complete by July 1998. It was important that the Wickes could manage the completed garden without the need for outside help. Barbara has endeavoured to mix subtropical with cold climate species and is pleased with the success they have had. One of their challenges was to grow a perennial border using plants that will thrive in the subtropics as well as survive their humid Summers. Many of the wonderful salvias now available are well suited to the gardens climate. Some of their favourites include ‘Midnight’, ‘Costa Rica Blue’, ‘Phyllis Fancy’, ‘Meigan’s Magic’, ‘Amistad’ and ‘Purple Majesty’. Winter flowering salvias include, ‘Romantic Rose’, ‘Ripe Raspberry’ and ‘Timboon’. Old-fashioned roses (Teas, Chinas and Noisettes) also do well. The Wickes fertilize their garden with ‘Plant of Health’ products. Seaweed and silica assist with prevention of black spot and mildew on roses. The kitchen garden is situated on a well-drained site, an important factor when growing herbs and temperate climate perennials, as many of them originate from Mediterranean areas.

Mary Cairncross, Monteville & Dulong (B, MT, D)
Mary Cairncross Guided Walk followed by morning tea in the Mountain View Café before departing for Monteville. Here you will have free time to enjoy wandering around this quaint village and enjoy lunch at your own expense before travelling to the garden of Jenny and Alister Inch at Dulong. We return to Mooloolaba in time for dinner.

Mooloolaba – Toowoomba (B, MT, D)
After breakfast we say goodbye to Mooloolaba and depart for Toowoomba. The first visit of the day is at Leonie & Terry Kearney’s garden, Rosevale Homestead,” Samsonvale.” This large garden is reputed to be the best cottage garden in southeast Queensland, and here we will enjoy a garden tour followed by morning tea before continuing our journey onto Kilcoy, Esk and Highfields. We will take a lunch stop enroute before arriving in Toowoomba late afternoon to check into our accommodation for the next three nights.

Towoomba (B, MT, L, D)
This morning we will visit the large town garden of Marj and Phillip Martin before spending time to experience Toowoomba, perhaps a visit to the Cobb & Co museum and the Native Garden. We will visit The Springs Garden World and lunch at Heidi’s Café before visiting Gordon and Maria Reynolds small native garden at Highfields and the Danish Flower Shop. Dinner at hotel.

A day on the Darling Downs (B, MT, D)
This morning we have a half hour drive to Pittsworth where we are meeting with Penny McKinlay, the owner of a large nursery in the area. She is providing morning tea on our arrival and then accompanying us as our guide for the day. Penny has organised four varied private garden visits, we will tour the gardens and chat with our hosts. A picnic lunch will be provided. Penny will leave us at our last visit of the day at Yarran in the Jonaryan area and we will return to our hotel late afternoon to enjoy dinner.

Toowoomba – Mt Tamborine (B, MT, L, D)
This morning we say goodbye to Toowoomba and journey to Rathdowney via Cunningham Gap and Allora. We have a three hour drive before reaching Sheryl & Flip Jenyns’ two-acre garden at Rathdowney where we will enjoy an early lunch and tour the garden before continuing our journey to Mt Tamborine. We will have time to settle into our accommodation before Dinner.

Mt Tamborine (B, MT, D)
This morning we will visit two small local gardens, Rhonda & Maurice Laarhoven‘s home at Eagle Heights and Larraine & Roy Bilbie’s at Tamborine Mountain, where we will view the garden and enjoy morning tea. Over the next few hours we will be free to explore the town and have lunch before our afternoon visit to the Botanic Gardens and a local Rose Garden. Dinner at the Manor.

Mt Tamborine (B, MT, L, D)
Today we visit another lovely garden on the mountain, the home of Meredith & Kevin Arnold before visiting Glenloch at North Tamborine. Caroline & Rob Tolmie are our hosts. We will tour their garden before enjoying lunch. This afternoon we visit the oldest garden on the Mountain, Tallaringa. Our hosts Christine & John Youngman will share their story and we will view the very old trees and lovely rainforest. We return to the hotel around 3.30pm for a little leisure. Dinner at the Manor.

Mt Tamborine – Brisbane – Christchurch (B, MT, L)
This morning we leave Mt Tamborine and travel to Kingsholme and visit the Kerkin Garden. This four acre garden on a slope is the home of Carol & John Kerkin. We will tour the garden and enjoy morning tea before travelling to Logan Reserve.

The last garden visit of our tour will be to Joncia Gardens owned by Marcia & John Rivett. The garden which is now approximately 3 acres has slowly evolved from a bare paddock back in 1992 to a garden of separate rooms, each with its own distinct theme. One is formal in layout complete with arbours, elegant statues and a mass planting of white iceberg roses, flanked with red carpet roses. In this area there is a lovely spreading Poinciana which provides plenty of shade on a warm day, under planted with bromeliads,

Another is the native garden, where all plants are chosen for their ability to withstand the heat and the dry. Grevilleas and bottlebrush which help to bring in the birds. It will be good to see how native plants combine so beautifully with cottage style blooms on the borders. On the south side of the property is the rainforest walk, another lovely place to escape the Summer heat under the shady canopy of tall established palms surrounded by layers of lush understory plantings. There is also a Japanese garden, where the red oriental bridge is situated. The rotunda is just another one of the beautiful structures spotted through the garden. It is situated in the middle of a water lilied pond via a Monet style bridge. Other features include “The Native Hut Area” and the vegetable patch, with the most recent addition being the ‘little Country Chapel” complete with camphor laurel furniture. At Joncia Gardens there is plenty for us to enjoy –I am sure you will not be disappointed.

A smorgasbord lunch will be enjoyed before we travel north to Brisbane International Airport to check in for our return flight home.