Sunday, February 03, 2008

Victoria The Garden Desert State

Garden state? Ha!

THE State Government seems determined to leave as its legacy for Melbourne a city of dead trees and dying gardens (The Age, 29/1). After 10 years of drought, the garden state still has no strategy to water the street trees and gardens that make Melbourne a joy to live in.

Our gardens aren't just a matter of old-fashioned civic pride, they are integral to issues of liveability, social equity, environmental sustainability, tourism, brand awareness and economic wellbeing. The technology and resources exist to save our gardens, but the political will is sorely lacking.

Robert Buckingham, St Kilda

Unlike Mr Buckingham, I don't entirely hold our State Government responsible. Local councils, specifically City of Melbourne and City of Port Phillip are just as responsible. For years they have poured water onto lawns and trees and then suddenly they switch it all off citing rules as a reason. Yes, you can't water public lawns from the mains, unless an exception is made, but you can water trees. That some lawn may get watered in the process, tough.

A walk through Fawkner Park is depressing now. The trees are clearly suffering badly and many appear to be on the verge of giving up. I am sure the triangle near us at the corner of Toorak Road and St Kilda Road is going to be bereft of trees. One has died already and the others look very sick.

These trees have had a spoilt life for a long long time, then suddenly their water is cut off.

I am quite angry with the state government and our local councils for allowing this situation to arise. Why didn't they have a plan. What? Drought in Australia? Who would have thought!

The Garden State rapidly heading towards being the Desert State.

Anyway, good on Mr Buckingham for drawing attention to the matter.

PS Do you think I should polish the above a bit and send it to The Age?


  1. Yes! Do send it into the Age. Lawns are one thing, but these are trees that a decades old in many cases.

  2. OTOH (but nothing that really detracts from your very legitimate points) a group of us bloggers did luxuriate in the very luxuriant Bot a Nickel gardens.

  3. Anonymous6:51 pm

    I totally agree with you here Andrew. It's a shame that we use more water than we're entitled to. In terms of resources, we share this prodigal wastefulness with the USA. Annoying but true.

  4. Polish and send it Andrew!
    There is a copious amount of cloud juice allowed to flush the storm water drains that any responsible council could have taken steps loooong ago to collect to provide and protect our leafy and historic assets.
    Better hurry - there's a thunderstorm on its way to send gazillions of litres more down the drains to the sea...water,water everywhere and not a drop to drink !

  5. I water my garden anytime I need to, but then I seldom bother having a shower or a wash. Who cares. Meanwhile there's the bourgeois myth that unwashed bodies smell, what rubbish. And all these spruced-up clots walking around broken-hearted because trees are dying but at the same time the the thought of missing a shower for ONE DAY gives them the horrors! Fair dinkum, the crocodile tears these liars cry would water the whole of Gippsland.

    Miss taking a shower for JUST ONE DAY!- you spivvy lot of bastards, put the water around a tree instead!

  6. Well darlings there's Australia Day and Anzac Day, Stand Up Straight and Harlot Day, so why not No-Shower Day? Donate the water to trees instead?

    (OOOOOH!- don't be disgusting!)

    ha ha.


  7. URGENT!!!

    -Not referring to anyone here, you know that of course, you are all my darlings!

    On the move.

  8. "so why not No-Shower Day? Donate the water to trees instead?"

    NOT a silly idea. (And here was I thinking R.H. was just a pretty face.) But we will need someone eminent like Uncle Ray Martin to head up the "Pong a Day for a Pittosporum" campaign.

    The Durian fruit could be the emblem for the campaign.

  9. ... in the interim I shall be observing the time honoured tradtion of going outside and pissing under the lemon tree.

  10. Well to tell the truth I have a gigantic piss every morning -almost a litre, into a bucket half-full of water, then I tip it on the fernery. I used to do it straight but they didn't like it, and what's more my deadhead social worker niece caught me one time she was saying here and described it as eccentric. Oh yes? And finding bits of Paris around Melbourne is quite normal? ha ha. POSEURS!!!

  11. Well I've also got a scheme for No-Shit Day (you can have a shit but don't flush it, okay?). But never mind, fair enough, I realise it's radical, too advanced for today's thinking.

    Generation Z.

    My day will come.