An award winning coastal garden with a Wollemi pine

By Kim Rudder

The Rudder garden at Maroubra recently won the Native Garden Section of the Randwick Council Garden Competition for the 16th year in a row. Kim wrote to share his own Wollemi pine, after missing our November 2019 quarterly gathering on the Wollemi pine.

My Wollemi pine

Here is my Wollemi Pine. It was given to me as a small tree about 30 cm tall, close to the first public release, somewhere like 17–18 years ago. It is now 4–5 metres tall. It has branched 3–4 m above the ground (when the top growing tip was damaged). Where it has lost leaves in the lower part of the trunk, it has several small branches, all actively growing. The longest of these is about 50 cm long and has just broken out into new growth. Last year it produced a female cone about 1.5 x golf ball size: this year two more.


My Wollemi
Wollemi pine at Maroubra

It was planted directly into where it is today. I have not directly fed it. It is well mulched. It is in questionable sandy soil not far from Maroubra Beach, with five houses between our place and Arthur Byrne Reserve behind the beach. It is fairly close to a couple of large Callitris pines.

Living with salt spray

The only care I give it is to give the foliage a spray with the hose every 2 or 3 days to wash off any salt residue.

I have never been sure about this… the car gets a little salty so I figure the plants also get a bit salty. It’s not a major problem, but I have given most of the plants a rinse regularly over the last 20 years or so. I don’t give much thought to the fact that the salt I wash off goes into the soil, and have never thought to test this, but there never seems to be a problem.

The rest of the garden – flowers

Red flowered grevillea

Grevillea oleoides







Garden paths and shade for summer