A butterfly garden for the arboretum

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SHANE Rattenbury has announced the concept for the new “Mununja the Butterfly Garden” at the National Arboretum Canberra.

“The garden depicts the dreamtime story of Mununja the Butterfly,” Shane said.

“This is a story of the Ngunnawal people, the custodians of the land that includes Canberra and the site of the National Arboretum.

“The Mununja the Butterfly Garden will be the second garden to be developed in the much anticipated Gallery of Gardens at the Arboretum where a total of up to seven gardens will be developed in future.

“Each garden in the Gallery of Gardens will be a themed garden and it is wonderful to have turned the sod today for the second of these gardens together with Tyronne Bell, a Ngunnawal custodian. The story of Mununja the Butterfly has been provided and approved by Mr Bell and consultation has taken place with traditional custodians to ensure appropriate depiction of cultural intellectual property.

“The layout, colour and shapes of the garden reference the geometric shapes or scales seen on butterfly wings, in particular the Orchard Swallowtail Butterfly and the Common Crow Butterfly, both found on the east coast of Australia.

“The central lawn within the garden allows for open space and a marquee for private events. There will be various sitting areas as well as plenty of shade and links to the surrounding environment. The shade structure references the body of a butterfly and two floating seats will be painted in a colour matched to the soft blue scales on the Common Crow Butterfly wings. Plants have been selected for cultural significance and for their relevance in providing habitat and food source for butterflies. There is a strong emphasis on plants that grow naturally in the ACT area and surrounds.

“The garden will also provide contemplative areas and public space for functions which will give the community even more options to the already range of opportunities on offer at the Arboretum. It will provide cultural dialogue, education, inspiration for gardeners and also an opportunity for indigenous engagement.”

Mr Rattenbury said that donations play a critical role in the development of the Arboretum and allow us to enhance the visitor experience in a much quicker manner.

“It is from the generosity of the philanthropic community that this garden will be delivered and I strongly encourage those with an interest in the Arboretum to donate and help with making this place an iconic Australian destination. I acknowledge the recent generous donation made by John and Colette Mackay which has added to the pool of funds available for projects like this.

“I look forward to the next steps in this process which will see the Arboretum strengthen ties with indigenous community further and create a great new addition to the visitor experiences at the Arboretum. It expected that construction will commence in mid 2016.”

[Photo by Rodtuk, attribution licence]

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