Featured artist: Shannon Crees

Cooks River Valley Garden

Featured artist: Shannon Crees
You are here:

Out and about

Cooks River Valley Garden

Marrickville Council will spend $70,000 to upgrade the Cooks River Valley Garden – a secret native garden within Tempe Reserve.

The garden is a little oasis down in Tempe – and it’s now set to be even better. It will inspire and educate everyone who visits to appreciate and use local species, and be a beautiful destination for our visitors to wander through and enjoy. We also really hope that new volunteers will be motivated to form a new Friends group, so we can once again have regular working bees down at there.

The garden is a showcase for indigenous plants of the Cooks River Valley, and was inspired by the book, Missing Jigsaw Pieces: The Bushplants of the Cooks River Valley by Doug Benson, Danie Ondinea, and Virginia Bear, published by Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, 1999 .

All the plants used were propagated from local seed stock by community nurseries in Marrickville, Randwick, and Strathfield. The first plant was put in the ground in September 2001 and the garden is still a work in progress.

While much volunteer effort was put into the project in the early years, numbers dropped off to the extent that contractors had to be hired to maintain the garden.

Now Council has matched a Metropolitan Greenspace Grant of $35,000 to upgrade the garden, carry out some major renovation works, and realise its potential as a horticultural showcase featuring local plant species.

Construction will commence in August and finish in November. The scope of works is:

  • Removing all dead/dying vegetation and a general site clean up
  • Removing existing old signage
  • Soil improvement to all garden beds including addition of nutrients, rotary hoeing and mulching in preparation for the planting of a range of Cooks River Valley plant species commencing in Autumn 2015
  • The construction of a main entry including entry signage, paving and feature planting beds
  • The construction of a central gathering area formed with sandstone walling and paving
  • The construction of a minor gathering area highlighted with paving, feature planting and stone
  • Installation of a traffic control bollard
  • Installation of advanced tree planting

The concept plan is available to view here.