Let your green-thumb blossom

Downsizing to a retirement living community doesn’t mean you have to forgo your enjoyment of gardening or leave behind your favourite pot plants.

Downsizing to a retirement living community doesn’t mean you have to forgo your enjoyment of gardening or leave behind your favourite pot plants. Aura Holdings’ communities offer many options for residents who love to garden.

Our keen green-thumbs can indulge their passion in a colourful balcony garden or get involved in their village communal garden with its flowers, plants, fruit trees, vegetables and herbs.

Connecting with nature, the pleasure of watching something you have planted grow and beautifying your personal outdoor space also provides you with light exercise and benefits to your mental health.

The lush gardens around the Kingsford Terrace Corinda retirement community are largely due to the dedication and skills of residents Di and Wayne Muller, who have lived in the Litchfield building for five years.

“I think gardening is in my blood, my grandmother was a very talented gardener and I’ve been keen since I was a young girl,’’ Di says. “Wayne loves gardening too and we’re so glad we’ve had permission to do it here. This is our home so we want it to look as nice as possible and we take a lot of pride in it.

“We do spend quite a bit of time in the gardens but it’s our choice to do so and it’s good exercise. It gives us a lot of pleasure when the other residents and their families comment and say how nice the gardens look.’’

Doris Knezic has always surrounded herself with plants and flowers so having a small garden was essential when she was moved to The Avenue Maroochydore.

Her courtyard garden contains several surprising elements and artistry where carefully chosen flowering plants provide all-year colour. Doris says that she finds solace in gardening.

Fellow residents of The Avenue, Noel and Val Merwood, are able to stroll from their ground-floor apartment into their pretty courtyard garden and be amongst their favourite plants.

“There is a steady stream of residents heading to the pool or visitors on the path where the colour and perfumes of our little garden are happily shared,’’ Val says. “Having a garden, be it in the soil or a pot, has helped residents make The Avenue their home.’’

Noel with Barrie Smith and Nigel Fitzgerald tend the thriving communal vegetable patch where they grow seasonal produce in raised beds that is available to other residents who can make a small donation that funds seedlings for the next crop.

The Atrium Lutwyche on Brisbane’s inner northside is Aura’s most urban village but residents are turning their balconies into colourful and green spaces with the use of pot plants.

Resident Jan Mackay loves to sit on her fourth-floor balcony amongst her thriving plants with her Siamese cat, Roger, and a book. The views over Brisbane City create a stunning backdrop.

“I realised that although I would have a relatively small space to work with, I wanted plants to soften the area and draw the eyes of visitors out from the apartment to the city views,’’ Jan says.

“I knew what I wanted but had help from the visiting gardener to The Atrium to source the large and interesting pots. I also needed his help to get them in place.

“Roger and I have a peaceful nook to sit and have a coffee or a wine and think about life and how lucky we are to have such a safe haven in the midst of all that’s going in the world.’’

Another resident at The Atrium, Rosemarie Pettinato, has a mix of large, medium and small pots which hold olive, lemon and mandarin trees, herbs, lavender and other colourful flowers on her spacious balcony.

“Having a landscaper was helpful to set up and choose plants for my space,’’ Rosemarie says. “These pot plants are enough for me to look after physically and mentally. They give me much pleasure watching them grow, providing produce, as well as colour to brighten up the balcony.’’

The Pavilion North Kirra is due for completion in September 2021 and its residents will share a rooftop garden with views of the Gold Coast hinterland.

Two other Aura villages will be surrounded by towering trees and rolling green fairways. Somerset Indooroopilly is being constructed within Brisbane’s Indooroopilly Golf Club and The Ninth Middle Ridge will be built inside the Toowoomba Golf Club. The residents of these golfside communities will look out to lush hectares of mature trees but have options for their own green spaces if they wish.

If you would like help to establish a balcony garden, Viera Tischljar from VT Interiors is happy to assist. Viera’s fees start from $200 plus GST for an initial consultation and she can be contacted on 0421 742 415 or viera@vtinteriors.com.au.

To find out more about your green space options at The Atrium Lutwyche, call (07) 3716 0804 or email live@kingsfordterrace.com.au.

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