Epping Road Azalea Feature to Be Rejuvenated

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You may recall that In the Cove started a petition to bring back the Epping Road Gardens and to reinstate the floral Lane Cove display.  This petition was presented to Council.   At the Lane Cove Council August Meeting, there was good news and bad news.

The good news is that the Lane Cove Council has recognised that the azalea display was a landmark and have resolved to restore and maintain the Azalea planting along Epping Road.  The bad news is that due to the road work associated with the Lane Cove Tunnel, the plant beds are no longer large enough to incorporate a mass planting Lane Cove floral display.

Unfortunately, the recreation of the ‘LANE COVE’ floral display is unachievable due to the lower garden beds now being narrower and the installation of the tree pits at footpath level making them disjointed and too small.

Although Lane Cove Council promotes the use of indigenous, native plants, the colorful display of exotic mass plantings in the garden beds along Epping Road had local cultural heritage significance.  However the Lane Cove Council agreed to investigate the possibility of providing a design which will best incorporate the historical plants but also provide a floral display over a longer period throughout the year. To achieve this, rather than having only Azaleas with one annual flowering, it may be possible that Council plant the top beds with Azaleas and the lower beds with alternate Spring/Summer, and Autumn/Winter flowering plants, thusly creating two seasonal displays per year. Hardy species that can tolerate both full sun and shade will need to be chosen. With this concept, Council should be able to create a spring/summer and winter/autumn themed schemes as well as the ‘native gateways’ at either end of this section of Epping Road. Further investigation of the irrigation system will also be required to ensure that it is working and extended so as to ensure adequate irrigation of the plants on the top and lower beds.

 

The existing Azaleas species in the upper beds have been there for decades and since their initial planting, they have become commercially unavailable. Earlier this year Council’s nursery started a program of taking cuttings from these plants with a view to replanting them when they reach a suitable size. So far, the nursery has taken 300 cuttings which have all taken. These should be ready for planting in winter 2019. It is proposed that this program is continued over the subsequent years affording Council an ongoing supply of Azaleas to top up the upper beds.

 

While it is a shame that the Lane Cove Floral Display cannot be reinstated, it is great to hear that this area will be rejuvenated and that the Azaleas will be a prominent feature of the restoration project.  Possibly the Lane Cove community could come up with a tourist attraction that will induce people to come to lane cove and spend some money.  A strong vibrant community means choice of shops and local employment.

By the way….

  1. Do you think Lane Cove needs a commuter bus to assist people to access the Lane Cove shops during the Rosenthal Avenue Car Park redevelopment?  You can answer our survey here.
  2. Do you want to find out who is running for the Local Government Elections on 9 September (and maybe ask them some questions on infrastructure?).  Come along to our free Meet the Candidates forum on 31 August 2017.  You can book here.

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