As a bit of a snake-phobic, my introduction to the part of the Melbourne Botanic Garden which is sited outside the city and specialises in native Australian flora was somewhat unsettling. The numerous signs about snakes had me walking down the middle of the path at all times despite the curator’s assurances that they had only two things on their mind – a. food: I was too large and b. sex: they wouldn’t fancy me.
This is a garden that is beginning to mature and I found it both fascinating and informative. I particularly liked the part that showed the transformative effect of rising waters on a dry river bed. It is laid out in a very naturalistic way with water gently bubbling in a pool. Every twenty minutes the water rises up and pours down into the dry and stony riverbed, filling it so that it flows strongly, before it subsides once more.
It’s a garden that will get better and better and gave me a great insight into Australian flora at the beginning of our visitor. And no, I didn’t see a snake.