Not For Profit Shoutout - Hunter Region Botanic Gardens
The Hunter Region Botanic Gardens (HRBG) cover an area of more than 130 hectares, much of which has been preserved as natural bushland. The gardens are managed, maintained and developed by a non-profit company of volunteers. You’ll find the gardens at 2100 Pacific Highway Heatherbrae, where they are open to visitors from 9am until 4pm daily, 7 days a week.
THEIR MISSION To establish a botanic garden within the Hunter Region that would serve the people as a focus for the appreciation, study, research and enjoyment of horticulture, botany and related fields by the growing and display of plants, both native and introduced species, in landscaped and natural surroundings.
HISTORY OF HRBG The Hunter Region Botanic Gardens was established on 11th November 1985 and is a Public, Not for Profit Company Limited by guarantee. The Board of Directors of the Company consists of a Chairman, Deputy Chairman, Secretary, Honorary Treasurer and seven Directors. All Directors work voluntarily and also have operational roles at the Gardens.
Today, 35 years on, HRBG is still managed and maintained by an extensive and passionate group of volunteers. The volunteer community numbers over 180 members, who develop and tend the gardens, many of whom reside in the Newcastle area.
HOW CAN WE HELP OUT? The best way we, as a community, can help out is to simply visit and enjoy the gardens, learn something about our native flora and pass it on! To welcome visitors, the Gardens have a Visitor Centre, cafe, gift shop and reference library. Devonshire teas and light lunches are served daily, or visitors can picnic in the Gardens. Walks and excursions are organised regularly, and there is a program of special events.
The Gardens are continually growing as new displays are developed for recreational, educational and scientific purposes. Australian and introduced species are laid out in theme areas including acacias, banksias, myrtaceae, grevilleas, ferns, bushtucker plants, succulents and palms. Rare and endangered Australian species are also cultivated. The orchid houses are extremely popular with visitors.
Many of the plants are suitable for the home garden, and the landscaping is an inspiration for the keen gardener. Expert personal advice is available on plantings and propagation, and a large selection of plants and herbs can be purchased at low prices from the plant stall.
Easy walking trails provide access to the natural bushland with its mature blackbutt, angophoras and swamp mahogany forests and its understorey of more than 150 native plants. Their forests are the natural habitat of goannas, wallabies, lizards, brushtail and ringtail possums, sugar gliders, bats, a small group of resident koalas and many birds.
FOR MORE INFORMATION Visit www.huntergardens.org.au. For information about volunteering, contact Robert Beautement by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are many important causes across the Hunter Region and particularly throughout Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, the Hunter Valley and Port Stephens. Each month, we feature one worthy cause to highlight their inspirational work and hopefully help them to either raise much-needed funds or the support of other community members. Do you know a local charity or not-for-profit group who could use a shout out? Visit www.intouchmagazine.com.au/contact to nominate today!