Myall Park Botanic Garden is QLD site 699 in the Camps 10 book, hosted the Shearers Ride 2020 (take 2) 3-9 October. I didn’t know that it was common for shearers to ride their bicycles from shed to shed as they worked across the country during shearing season. The social ride covers about 400 km all up – riding old steel single speed, 2/3 speed internal geared bicycles – they range from 1900 to 1960 with no modern MTBs or gravel bikes.
Here’s what their week looks like, finishing tomorrow where they started in Meandarra, Queensland, Australia.
Day 1 4th Oct Meandarra to Myall Park 33 km
Day 2 5th Myall Park to Condamine 77 km
Day 3 6th Condamine to Dulacca 73 km
Day 4 7th Dulacca to Possum Park 54 km
Day 5 8th Possum Park to Condamine 75 km
Day 6 9th Condamine to Meandarra 76 km
It was no wonder bicycles became popular for shearers in the 1890s – you didn’t have to feed a bike, and they were cheaper buy and care for than a horse. They would travel up to 200 km between shearing sheds! Now vintage bike lovers can journey on an annual Shearer’s Ride.
Any traveller can camp at the botanic garden, they have room for big rigs as well. The budget site is 5 km north of Glenmorgan, Queensland, Australia (between Tara and Surat). No pets, but there are facilities (accessible, too), power, water, mobile coverage, fireplaces, picnic tables, playground, shade and views. There is a caretaker onsite.
Myall Park Botanic Garden was originally part of a sheep property and the owner, Dave Gordon, created a garden to showcase Australian arid and semi-arid plants. He built several houses and a shearers quarters for himself and his workers in the 1950s, from timber milled on the property. These buildings are now used to accommodate the caretakers and visitors and may be rented for a few nights or longer.
His wife, Dorothy, was a botanical artist and painted many of the flowers that Dave grew. The most well known plants that originated in this garden are Robyn Gordon and Sandra Gordon grevilleas. These plants are naturally occurring hybrids from other grevillea parents. Merinda and Dorothy Gordon grevilleas also occurred here naturally but are not so well known.
There is also a Gallery which houses some of Dorothy Gordon’s paintings plus a bird hide for birding enthusiasts.
Thanks to Sue Ackeroyd from Myall Park for the update!
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Myall Park Botanic Garden, Glen Morgan. Fascinating place set up by Dorothy and David Gordon many years ago. Several varieties of grevillea have been cultivated from here starting back in the 1950s. Pic1&2 is a Robin Gordon (I think🤷🏼♂️) variety being enjoyed by blue-faced honeyeaters; pic3 is unsure; pic4 is Merinda Gordon variety with spiky holy-like leaves; pic5 Sandra Gordon yellow one; pic6 white unknown; pic7 possible hybrid or another Robin Gordon. #gravesy67qld #birdsofqueensland