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Thursday, 21 July 2016

Ansley's Hill Recreation Park, South Australia

One of Adelaide's newer bushwalking parks

When researching this park, I was surprised to find out that it was only designated as a recreational park in 1989 and a new parcel of land was added in 2002. Other walking and hiking trail parks are much older and more established, this one is still popular with the local people judging by the amount of people using it on the days I was there.



The city centre of Adelaide as seen from the higher trails, a good view of the Adelaide plain with the sea beyond.



The easiest path and well used, along the valley leading to the ruins of the Newman's Nursery.



The park contains the ruins of the old Newman's Nursery which in the late 1800s was the largest plant nursery in the Southern Hemisphere (quite a feat when you consider the South Australian colony was really small even compared to the other Australian colonies, and South Africa had a large population of colonists and it was closer to Great Britain for export purposes)

The old nursery was badly affected by a storm in 1913 which destroyed most of its greenhouses and then destroyed by floods in the early 1920s. A descendent of the early Newmans later opened a nursery about 2km from this site and that still operates today.



Ruins of the houses I'm assuming from the fireplace. A sign nearby tells the tragic story of the original Newman's youngest daughter dying from a terrible accident when she ran to greet her father and slipped into a large vat of boiling water in the fireplace. The burnt stone is from much later as the ruins were further damaged by the Ash Wednesday fires of 1983.




The stables, the nursery complex was a small village supporting the Newman family, the founder had 17 children!

A horse trough next to the path to the old nursery, which makes me think that perhaps the path is the old road to the nursery.




 Even with being in quite low in a valley there is a distant view of the Adelaide plain and the sea, the reason for the nursery being built where is was is close proximity to water. There's an underground spring which then feeds a creek, on the left of the picture with the dried reeds.



The path through the valley.


A small creek with calla lilies growing alongside it, not yet flowering. With the nursery there are still remnants of introduced planting in the park, I even saw some snowdrops, definitely not indigenous Australian plants!


In contrast to all the nature and history, something more industrial, the Mannum-Adelaide pipeline. Built in the 1960s in an effort to drought proof Adelaide, water can be pumped from the Murray River into the local Adelaide water catchments.

The 'new' Newman's Nursery established in the 1940s is lovely to visit as have a lovely cafe, here's my post on a visit there last year.

Topiary Cafe at Newman's Nursery


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