About our patch

Our patch has recently changed. When I started this blog back in January 2012, we were happily living and gardening in the inner west of Sydney.

Now, things have changed and dramatically! We are now on 800 acres in the South-west slopes, or the Lower Snowy Mountains of NSW. "Gosh, that's a lot of land" I often say to myself -  I expect you are saying much the same!

Highfield, as the property is known locally, is special. It has a conservation covenant over 2/3rds of the property protecting critically endangered box forest and grassland. The rest of the land we can use as we wish - some obviously for our vegetable and fruit and nut ambitions.

This kind of habitat is now very rare and we are fortunate or daunted - not sure yet - to be the custodians of this special place. As well as the box trees (red and white box), we also have some lovely stringy barks and the majestic Blakely's Red Gums. We also have distinctive kurrajongs and callitris pines dotted over the country. Over time I will update this page with more details on the property and its flora and fauna under protection so pop back occasionally.

Right now (late November), there are some beautiful wildflowers. These yellow paper daisies ( I will need to look their scientific name up soon but my guess is that they are  one of the Xerochrysum?),

and this graceful Wahlenbergia.

There is also a beautiful blue pincushion plant -  Brunonia I think -  on the dry ridges that I have never seen before, a lovely Thysanotis and a delicate yellow lily down on the creek flats -  must go back and take photos of them before they fade. During our winter visits there was beautiful orchids growing on the top ridges -  greenhoods and others. Over time I will post their portraits here too.

A beautiful rocky creek boarders the patch in part, with swimming holes and a sandy beach.

Unfortunately the trout have fled and European carp now cruise the stream. I am contemplating carp-based fish emulsion recipes and placing a freshly caught carp under each fruit tree! That'll deal with some of them!

All along the creek line are wombat holes and at night a barking owl does its thing.

There is, as Clancy knows, views of  "the sunlit plains extended and at night the wondrous glory of the everlasting stars". (Thanks Banjo!).

We have weeds to knock out, seeds to collect and re-vegetation to do. Its an exciting, living, environmental project.

This blog will cover my veggie growing, the wildlife that we share our patch with and our efforts at protecting this little rare bit of bushland and possibly our amateurishness at 'farming'.

Take a look at these places too to see more about our patch:
Wildlife  which includes a list of bird sightings
Wordless Wednesday - Bush flowers
Bathing Beauties
Wildlife watching
Year of the snake, day of the snake
Spring Wildflowers


  1. Looks absolutely idyllic and I have no doubt that you will keep it that way.

    1. I wonder each morning when we have to go home and leave this B&B to someone else... and then I realise, it's ours to look after and invite others to enjoy.

  2. Found your blog through the latest Nature Conservation Trust NSW newsletter. You are doing a fantastic thing. All the best for your new country and conservation adventures Louise!

    1. Thank you so much for your best wishes, we are loving it here already. If you are interested, I have just yesterday put up some photos on the Wildlife button of some of the creatures that we have already met who share the place with us. Are you an NCT landholder too? Or someone who dreams?

  3. Wow, Louise! This is a amazing place! I am Xiaoxiao 小小from Fudan, Shanghai (Remember me?). I talked to your ex-colleagues this morning for Chinese New year celebration and they showed me your blog address. Please update more may be some day I'll drop by before I leave this country!


    1. Na dangran! Please do mfeel free to come and visit, it would be great to see you.

  4. Forgot to say... 新年快乐,心想事成!

  5. I've just found your blog through www.500m2.com and the timing is pretty apt since I'm currently driving relatively close to you! I normally reside in the South Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, but right now I'm in Bomballa having just travelled from Canberra. I look forward to reading through your archives!

    1. Oh how lovely, thanks Christine! Actually, we are on the other side of the Snowies - on the Slopes side, not the coast side, close to Adelong. Enjoy reading thru!



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