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:
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 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.