Tag Archives: Mt Cootha

Camellias of Mount Cootha

Camellias of Mount CoothaDSC_0128

It was a cold day today in Brisbane, but after putting on a few layers of clothing I took my mother Freda (pictured in the centre) to visit my close friend Marina (far left) in her garden.

Marina cares for the temperate garden in the Mount Cootha Botanical gardens in Brisbane. It is located 7 km from CBD. Winter is the time when the temperate garden shines because the camellias are blooming, and the red ones are exquisite. I took a few pictures of different colours, but these red ones were burning to be shown. There are also dark pink and a red and white camellia in these pictures. The botanical gardens is opened every day.



Camellias are easy to  grow and can survive for a long time. They are hardy and relatively trouble free. With a little care, they will give many years of pleasure with their attractive evergreen foliage and beautiful floral displays. Camellias are known to grow 100 and 200 years – the oldest recorded planting that is still living today is in the Panlong Monastry in China – planted in 1347.

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Contrary to popular belief, Camellias thrive in a wide range of conditions – from the cooler climes around the hills of Sydney and Melbourne to the hot and sometimes humid conditions that we experience in South East Queensland and further north. A particular Camellia variety that does well in cooler areas may not perform as well in a warmer region – and of course the opposite applies. The best results will come from selecting varieties that are suitable for the area and position.

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Camellia Glen

Mt Cootha Botanical gardens

In the park – Poem

Watercolour by JK.Leahy© Title: “In the Park” (Mt Cootha Botanical Gardens)

In the Park – JK.Leahy©

Restless is the breeze

where light has ceased

Alone, I sit in the dark

where we kissed in the park

Heightened heat burns

And time rhythms heartbeat

I wait in the park

where our footsteps left a mark

Years worn boulders and

seedlings aged into forest

Grave is nearing

for our meeting in the park

My Cootha is one of my favourite places in Brisbane. My closest friend and my son’s godmother Marina works in the temperate gardens. Often when I visit her, this wooden contemporary bench is where we sit and have lunch. I painted this watercolour for her as a gift. The poem is just an observation of people who come to sit in the temperate gardens.