Bloomin' Marysville!

Easter seems the perfect time to think about new growth and resurrection. Seeing those first spring flowers splashing colour around is always a morale-booster. Imagine how much that will be so for Marysville, after their first winter since the fires?

The Bloomin' Marysville bulb planting project has lift off! The first lot of freesia bulbs, donated by growers in the Warburton Highway area, have been taken up to Marysville and given to Judy Jans of MATDG, and other residents.

The first volunteer planting day was held on Saturday, the 18th of April. People from Healesville, Warburton and further away came to help plant the bulbs. I was not able to be there because one of my birth clients went into labour and I drove to Shepparton to attend the birth. But, thanks to the efforts of so many people, thousands of bulbs were planted, and several pots were delivered too.


Here's some photos taken on the day.

The second gardening day was held on Saturday 9 May. About 30 people showed up, and we planted thousands of daffodils along the road near the site of the temporary village. Then some volunteers went to Lana's house to prepare terracotta pots of bulbs, flowers and herbs. These pots will be given to individual householders. A couple found their way to Bruno's Sculpture Garden - which is open for business, so please go and support Bruno. Many of his sculptures survived but sadly, many were destroyed. The Tower Motel, the Bakery and the Crossways Inn are all open for business and would all appreciate our patronage.

We'd like to thank the Rotary Club of Healesville, who very kindly donated several dozen bags of potting mix for this planting day - and organized the delivery of it, at very short notice. Kind thanks to Graeme Chester who coordinated this for us.

Lana still has more pots to be prepared, and other ideas for greening Marysville, too. If you would like to help in any way, please contact Lana on 0439 317 003, who will be grateful for any assistance.

Here are some photos from the Saturday 9th May planting effort:

Planting by the Steavenson River, opposite the Crossways Inn.

This lovely couple donated hundreds of the beautiful pots, plus plants and potting mix, which they brought up in their van. They own the Rainbow Icecream Shop in Warburton, so next come you're there, please stop by, say hello and buy an icecream!

On the way home to Warburton we drove by the Lake Mountain area. As you can see from the above photo, there are areas where the fire was so intense, there is still not much re-growth happening, even three months after the fire. This contrasts starkly with areas where ferns and eucalupts are budding, making the trees look like they're decorated with green tinsel.

The Herald Sun ran the following short article on Monday April 6:

MASSES of blooms will rise from the ashes of Marysville in spring, thanks to a plan to bring hope to the devastated township.

Hundreds of bulbs -- freesias, tulips, and daffodils -- will be planted in a "guerilla gardening" operation by supporters from neighbouring towns.

The symbolic action is being co-ordinated by Julie Bell, of nearby Warburton, who escaped from Marysville with her family on Black Saturday. "It is going to be a pretty tough winter for many people," Ms Bell said.

She has collected hundreds of bulbs from growers and gardeners and is appealing for wheelbarrows, garden tools and gloves.

"The recovery is symbolic of the people's roots deep in this same place," Ms Bell said.

Ms Bell escaped from the town with her children after visiting her parents in holiday accommodation at Marysville on Black Saturday.

Ms Bell -- who tells her story in new book Black Saturday said her perspective on the bushland view from her home had been permanently altered.

Black Saturday: Stories of love, loss and courage from the Victorian Bushfires is available wherever good books are sold from April 9, priced $24.99.

All proceeds from the book (after GST) will be donated to the Salvation Army Bushfire Appeal.

Here is the article in the Daily Telegraph

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