I turned 50 this year! I always enjoy my birthdays but felt this one warranted more significant recognition. Not a party - a tree!
Nissa promised funding and even found a local-ish supplier but when Plan A fizzled out, I schemed for a Roma trip to visit another bottle tree grower.
I made contact with Elizabeth of Bindaroo Bottle Trees ("Grow your own bulge!") about a week before our planned departure.
I rang Elizabeth on Monday and we visited later in the day. It was a bit of adventure. Vaughan spotted two bustards along the way!
I had spoken to Elizabeth about my plan for a potted bottle tree (till we have a permanent abode) and she'd selected two lovely trees for me to choose from.
We chatted at length about her early bottle-tree growing days and current operation - with trees being delivered to all states of Australia! (A truck-load had just left for Western Australia)!
Some of Elizabeth's bottle trees are in Peter Maccallum Cancer Centre's rooftop garden, which is not far from Nissa's uni.
I received lots of tips for looking after my new tree and really enjoyed spending time in Elizabeth's nursery oasis - standing in the shade listening to little birds flitting about. What a beautiful place to work!
We had visited Roma's largest bottle tree in the morning. It has a girth of 9.51 metres. My tree is currently almost my height (including crown - the tree's not mine)! Let's not discuss girths! I plan to measure the two of us each birthday and see how wonderfully we age together!