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Welcome to Life Images by Jill.........Stepping into the light and bringing together the images and stories of our world.
I am a photographer, writer and multi-media artist. Through my blog I am
seeking to preserve images and memories of the beautiful world in which we live and the people in it.

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Monday, 9 May 2022

Balingup Golden Valley Tree Park - Western Australia

Hi everyone. How are you? I hope you and yours are doiing well. We have been having glorious autumn weather. Clear days and cool evenings. 

But to be honest I have been feeling out of sorts for several weeks now. No particular reason - just an accumulation of things - a few health issues with family and friends, the ongoing Covid situation, and housing problems for a family member. I just feel like I need to go and sit in the bush (forest) for a few days - forest bathe - and get back on an even keel. 

So it was rather lovely to go for an autumn walk in the Balingup Golden Valley Tree Park which is about an hour or so from our home in the south west of Western Australlia. In a country where we have predominantly everygreen trees, the tree park is very special. We have been coming here almost annually for about 10 years. 

The Golden Valley Tree Park is a sixty hectare landscaped park set in the picturesque hills of Balingup. The heritage listed site has a collection of international trees that was begun over one hundred years ago, and is now the largest arboretum in Western Australia. The land was bought by the Government in the late 1970s and  park was establshed around 1980. 


I have blogged about the park before - here are a few examples: 

Autumn season of change - 2016

Autumn in the Golden Valley tree park - 2017

Autumn colour in Western Australia - 2019

We were maybe a week or so early this year, and it was a cloudy overcast day, but it didn't matter, it was still beautiful, the weather was good for walking, and being able to go midweek meant that we could wander without the crouds. Mother's Day in the second weekend of May is very popular! 

The tree park is 1.5 kilometres south of Balingup, or you can walk to it from Balingup via an easy 2 kilometre walk along the part of the 1000 kilometre Bibbulmun Track, which passes through the park. Please shut the gates as sheep graze on the property. 

The area that comprises the park was first settled in 1898 by Frank and Margaret Cleverland.  Their home was built of bricks made from clay dug from nearby Yungerup Spring. The original 20 plantings of exotic species by Olwyn Cleverland during 1930-1940's has grown to an impressive world collection of over 500 species, represented by over 3000 individual specimens. The Park, which is heritage listed, is maintained by volunteers and sponsorship. From its first plantings over 100 years ago the the Golden Valley Tree Park is now the largest arboretum in Western Australia.

The Australian tree collection covers 25 hectres for Australian trees and the World Collection covers 35 hectares. 

You can read more about the history and management of the park here Golden Valley Tree Park - about us.

Here are a few pics from around the park. 

Sit and enjoy the view from the pear walk

There are lovely places to sit along the way, as under these Chinese Tallow trees. 


There are over 30 species of oaks in the park. 


The Chinese Pistachio walk is one of my favourites in the park. 


Beyond this gate is the London Plane trees Avenue to Nowhere planted in 1908 by the Craig family in anticipation of a newer grander house. However the plans were abandoned after a leg injury sustained in the First World War and the property was sold in 1920. 


These are Red Miexican Hawthorne trees. The bright red berries remind me of Christmas. 


These are persimmon trees


And a huge Chinese Pistachio tree


This delightful map which I think is aimed at children, outlines some of the features of the park



The old mulberry tree


Sadly our day ended prematurely when it started to rain. We sheltered under some trees, until they too released their water burden, so we ran back to the car and headed home. We had had a lovely day. Make sure you take your lunch, so you can take your time to meander through the different areas of the park. Or buy your lunch in Balingup on the way through. 


9 comments:

  1. ...Autumn is a special time of year for me, but I need to enjoy our spring and summer first! Enjoy each day as they come your way.

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  2. Jill - I am sorry to hear that you are in a bit of a funk. Sometimes the world can be a bit overwhelming! I hope you can find some ways to dig your way out. I appreciate that you wrote this post and linked up; maybe it was a help? I so admire people like the Cleverlands, who have the vision and the generosity to start such a project!

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    1. it certainly helped to go walking amongst the autumn beauty of the park. Thanks Angie.

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  3. Fantastic colors dear Jill! Autumn is always a sight to behold. Thank you for the information about this and, above all, for your participation in the Nature Thursday. Kind regards - Elke

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  4. So colorful and lovely. I know how you feel. In 9 months I have lost my brother and his wife and my mother. I am in the works of selling my home and having all of my items put into storage. My fianc├ęs home is in the middle of a master bathroom remodel. It's overwhelming at times. Getting out into natural surroundings can help so much!

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    1. to loose so many in 9 months is so tragic Rose. We lost my father and my mother-in-law in just under 4 months. Such a difficult time. Still it sounds like you are moving forward. So enjoy the changes as they come, and take time out in nature. Thanks Rose for stopping by.

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  5. I thought it was always Summer in your country! Thanks for sharing all this Beauty. Was it helping you, this trip? I understand why the Chinese Pistachio walk is one of my favorites in this park. Super nice, your pics of it.

    https://momentsfrozentime.blogspot.com/2022/05/kijk-naar-de-bloemen.html

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  6. Hello Jill,
    i hope all is well. Your day at the park sounds lovely. The trees and views are gorgeous. Lovely fall colors and beautiful photos. Thanks for visiting my blog. .Take care, have a great day and a happy weekend!

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  7. A beautiful park and perfect for needed forest bathing, something that helps me so much when I'm having days like you describe. Hope things are looking up by now -- It's sort of tough in general these days over here -- I'm glad to have "forests" (even if they are urban ones) nearby. It helps me to remember to 'choose joy'.

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