Lorraine Keen’s shade house is home to plants she has collected over the past 40 years, filling it to the brim with an assortment of greenery.
After moving her collection 600 kilometres north from Nimbin, NSW to Burnett Heads three years ago, Lorraine said the vision of a shade house was the perfect solution.
“I’m always changing the plants around in the shade house, it’s a bit like flower arranging on a larger scale,” Lorraine said.
“I designed it to have a shelf-free end so I could have room for some of my plants that I have had for up to 40 years.”
Lorraine said the lack of shade encouraged the establishment of a new area, which was created behind a stand of golden cane palms.
“The house is in a new area and there were hardly any shaded areas,” she said.
“We made use of the area between the stand of golden canes and the fence line to tunnel out what I call my palm house which was invaluable in keeping my plants alive.
“The shade house was built 23 months ago – it was my dream come true.”
As an avid gardener, Lorraine said she loves to spend her time in the shade house, especially after carefully creating the layout for the plants that live inside.
“Each day starts and finishes with a tour of the shade house – my husband reckons I should move my bed out there!” she said.
“The shelves I try to group by type considering their needs and space required.
“Some do better on one side than the other as they get more shade.
“It’s been trial and error, I’m still learning.”
Lorraine Keen said the plants meant more to her then they were worth, along with the connections she had made along the way.
“I have a lot of very special plants, it would be hard to select an outright favourite,” she said.
“My plants mean more to me than what they are worth, I have met so many wonderful people through plants.
“My favourites are those gifted to me.”
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