The focus of our plant collection is rainforest species which are endemic to an area within 200 km of the city of Lismore - though some other native species are included. When white settlers first arrived in the mid 19th century there was an area from just south of Lismore almost to the Queensland border which was mostly dense sub-tropical rainforest with dry rainforest in the drier more open areas. It was known as the Big Scrub, Only small remnants of this Big Scrub still remain. One of our aims is preserve as many as possible of the species found in that big rainforest.
Dry Rainforest species can be found in Rooms 4 and 1 of the Gardens – along the Rainforest Walk. Also in the Wilson Park Planting near the BBQ area. Observations of remnant rainforest on the Gardens site indicate that it was originally covered by the same type of Dry Rainforest that occurs at nearby Wilson Park Nature Reserve, one of the best collections of Dry Rainforest communities in NSW. Our Wilson Park garden contain 118 species mostly sourced from this reserve. They are clearly labelled and a list of these species is available on request.
Examples of Subtropical Rainforest can be found in Room 2 along the Rainforest Walk.
A variety of plants from the Myrtaceae family is found in Room 3 along the Rainforest Walk. Myrtacaeae is large and diverse plant family which is widely distributed in Australia. It is an important component of rainforest and rainforest margins. There are two fine examples of big old mature Syzygium francisii (Water Gum) this area.
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