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Mount Wilson

The garden at Hawthorn Hill

At an altitude of 1,000m and surrounded by the eucalypts and rainforest trees of the southern hemisphere, the garden at Hawthorn Hill is in the traditional park style. It is restful and peaceful. And the landscape composition is artfully natural. There are drifts and swales, gentle slopes, water views, naturalising plants, clusters, copses and long sweeping hedges. Sycamore, maple, oak, birch, beech, willow, aspen and dogwood among others have been planted in harmonious family groups. Conifers have been clustered together rather than intermingled among the deciduous trees. Dry-stone walls constructed from local basalt have been used extensively. And there is a modest Greek temple in the classical style beside a small lake, across which a Japanese bridge extends above water lilies. A large circular potager filled with fruit, flowers and vegetables in season is situated in a sunny central position. Its four quadrants are edged with box hedge. The permanent fruit trees in the potager are apples and persimmons. Nearby are two chestnut trees which are heavy with nuts in autumn. A short distance away is an autumn forest containing deciduous trees with strong seasonal colouring: Canadian red maple, ash, sycamore, pistachio, Japanese maple and beech. Adjacent to the autumn forest, with views of the lake, is an oak wood where a large Quercus robur is surrounded by lesser scarlet oaks, Pin oaks and red oaks. Alongside the red gravel driveway, there is a sheltered woodland area, where shade-loving woodland plants, including rhododendron, camellia, oak-leaf hydrangea and pieris, thrive.