The Friends of the Wollongong Botanic Garden will this weekend launch a coffee table-style book that celebrates the 50-year history of the Garden at an exhibition at Old Wollongong Court House from Saturday 6 March.
The book captures the origins of the Gardens and uses historic photographs, documents and maps to chart the development of the site from grassy paddocks into the thriving greenspace that’s enjoyed by 500,000 visitors each year today.
“The Wollongong Botanic Garden is an important space for so many in our city. It can be a place of relaxation, a social hub as well as a place to get a better understanding of local flora and fauna,” Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM said.
“It’s fascinating to turn the pages of the book and see how the garden has evolved over the past five decades. For example, it’s striking to look at the 1980s section and see pictures of the first plantings in the dry mound and the Rotunda just after it was donated.
“These spaces look so different today and it’s a reminder of how far the Gardens have come in a relatively short time.”
Today the Garden plays a key role in the city’s urban greening focus, and on-site Greenplan program and nursery propagates about 80,000 plants a year that are used across the city or purchased by residents for their home gardens.
Wollongong’s garden was one of the first in the world to receive the Botanic Gardens Conservation International’s Botanic Garden Accreditation in recognition of its efforts in plant conservation and education.