Week 3 July 2004: After breakfast, at Longreach, we walked to the Stockmanís Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame is a large building that houses material relating to the pioneer days in Australia. On a previous visit we noticed that there was virtually no reference to women. This imbalance has been redressed (no pun intended) to a certain extent and women are now featured in some displays.

The path from the caravan park to the Hall of Fame has been landscaped with a wide range of native plants including Eremophilas, Eucalypts and Grevilleas.

Next day we left Longreach bound for Charleville. On the way a stop was made at Ilfracombe. This small settlement boasts a large collection of antique machinery that is displayed along the highway. There were many interesting items including ancient tractors and bulldozers.

That night we stayed in an old hotel in Charleville. Our bedroom was a converted bathroom, complete with tiled floor. We called it the Heinz Suite because there were 57 different tiles on the floor. After dinner some members of the group indulged in a rather vigorous bush dance. In Charleville we bought an attractive piece of Boulder opal.

Next day we were on the road again. The bus stopped at a park in Roma for morning tea. The gardens in the park were landscaped with many varieties of Eremophilas. Eremophila bignoniifolia was one species in full flower.

That night we stayed at Moree, in the centre of cotton country. Moree is famous for its spa baths and some of the group relaxed in the warm water.

The final day was spent travelling from Moree to Armidale. A short stop was made at Guyra where there had been a fall of snow. Some members of the group let off steam by throwing snowballs at all and sundry.

This was a marvelous trip that allowed us to see places that we had only read about.

We took a while to come back to earth after we arrived home. There was 13.5 millimetres of rain in the gauge. This was more than welcome.

Our new Correa garden looked a bit bedraggled. With the dry weather and lack of green grass our resident kangaroos had stripped the foliage off all our newly planted Correas. They will sprout again in spring.

Went shopping on the last day of this week. Came across a bargain digital camera in Armidale. It was the Kodak CX7530, five-mega pixels camera. This has now replaced our CX4200 two-mega pixels camera. We find that digital cameras are the greatest invention since sliced bread.

We found time to pot on some germinated seeds that we had placed in kitchen paper before our trip.

Garden Diary