Skip to content
27 May 2023

Three unmissable blooms to see this Botanic Gardens Day

To celebrate Botanic Gardens Day on Sunday 28 May, we’ve put together a list of our must-see blooms at our three botanic gardens across Sydney - from blossoming Camellias to russet autumn leaves and bright native species.  

Eye-catching camellias at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney

Autumn brings a carnival of colour to the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney as Camellias blossom in their soft pinks, fiery reds and buttery white shades. Camellias are the 'queen of the winter flowers' and there's even a species in the collection that's now extinct in the wild. It’s the best time of year to see Camellias at Australia’s oldest botanic garden.  

Fill the rest of your day at the Garden by discovering more autumn buds. Potter around the Japanese windflowers near the Camellias, visit The Calyx with its towering green wall made up of over 18,000 plants and stare in wonder at the rugged Walnut tree near Palm Grove, which has seen over 195 autumns. If you’re an agriculture lover, it’s the perfect time to explore the ripened crimson berries (or ‘Haws’) of Lavallee's Hawthorn and the jam-making fruit of the Coolaman Rose Apple. 

Camellia amplexicaulis growing at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, which is now extinct in the wild.

Enchanting Japanese maple trees at the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden Mount Tomah

For a classic autumn spectacle full of ochre, crimson and golden hues, visit the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden Mount Tomah. This huge garden nestled in the UNESCO World Heritage area hosts hundreds of deciduous species all shedding their vibrant leaves. For photographers, it’s the perfect time to capture the cherry trees with their rosy petals falling, turning the floor into a blushed canvas under the misty air.  

Start the day by rugging-up and taking a Walking Tour through the crisp magical woodlands to learn their rich history. Marvel at the sweeping views from the World Heritage Viewing Deck looking over Tomah Spur and Mount Yengo in the Lower Hunter. Wander under the tall cedars in the Brunet Meadow and explore the North American Conifer Forest with its majestic coast redwoods and giant sequoias. 

Make sure you don’t miss the dense collection of oak, ash and birch trees in the Eurasian Woodland. Its thick canopy of cherry-red and blonde blankets a picturesque Autumn walk. 

Red Maple tree growing at the Blue Mountains Botanic Garden Mount Tomah

Lush Grevilleas at the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan 

Large natives at the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan are taking full shape. See the spidery tendrils of the burnt orange and ruby-toned species from the Grevillea genus, lined throughout the largest botanic garden in Australia. The grevilleas offer a chance to experience wildlife up close, with nectar feeding birds like Wattlebirds, Eastern Spinebills, and Noisy Friarbirds flocking to the area. 

Visit the array of native grassland swathes spilling over their beds at the National Herbarium of New South Wales, where over 1.4 million plant specimens are kept in sealed vaults and used for plant conservation research. You can take an Australian PlantBank tour and discover how plant material from native species are preserved and studied as an insurance policy against their extinction in the wild. 

The Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan is also a place of healing and reflection, chosen by the Stolen Generations as a site for acknowledgment. Explore the newly restored Stolen Generations Memorial, a sculptural sandstone centrepiece by artist Uncle “Badger” Bates. The artwork portrays the tragic consequences of separating Aboriginal children from their families, encouraging contemplation and peace. 

Grevellia 'Sunset Bronze' growing at the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan.

Botanic Gardens Day

Botanic Gardens Day is celebrated annually across Australia and New Zealand to recognise the vital and interesting role plants play in our lives, and the important work botanic gardens undertake to conserve them for future generations.  

Every plant at each of our Botanic Gardens is part of a Living Collection, which provides seeds or vegetative material which can be collected and used in conservation, restoration projects, research, education and horticulture. 

If you are a journalist and have a media enquiry about this story, please click here for contact details and more information.