Fern Gully reopens!
The upgrade is the first stage of a three-stage project designed to create a tranquil and accessible space to display, conserve and study ferns, palms, shrubs and ground covers, primarily from South Eastern Australia.
Donors and Friends of the Royal Botanic Gardens were among the first to inspect the improvements which included a new raised 215-metre steel boardwalk extending from the southern entrance of the Fern Gully down to Central Lake, five steel bridges, three wooden bench seats and more than 1,500 new ferns planted throughout the area.
Professor Entwisle said the improvements have been made possible thanks to a generous donation from the Friends of the Royal Botanic Gardens and several private donors.
“We’re very grateful to our Friends and supporters who have made Stage One of this project a reality. Sadly due to pressures of drought, impacts from 30,000 roosting Grey-Headed Flying Foxes, and a deteriorating path network, the condition of the Fern Gully had declined over the last twenty years and was in need of a major rejuvenation.”
Fern Gully was originally designed by a former Director of the Gardens, William Guilfoyle in 1873. Guilfoyle was known as the ‘master of landscaping’ and responsible for the scenic panoramas and sweeping lawns that are characteristic of the Gardens.
Andrew Laidlaw, the Gardens’ Landscape Architect said he was honoured to lead the restoration project with a team of horticultural experts from the Gardens. Fern Gully is open to the public every day of the year, 7.30am to sunset.
The full media release is available here.