Beautiful gardens begin to bloom again

FEBRUARY 24 will mark 12 months since parts of Terara were devastated by a tornado.

While the majority of the carnage has been cleaned up there are still telltale signs of the damage the wind caused as it ripped through the village.

Two of the worst hit properties, the Moore family’s Citrus Grove and Sue Weissel’s beautiful garden, which opens each November for A Taste of Christmas, have bounced back.

The Moores’ garden was devastated.

Their 152-year-old home suffered structural damage, a chimney on the eastern side was blown over, while glass was blown out of the French doors at the front of the house.

Owners Peter and Susan Moore still can’t believe the devastation but are thankful their once well-established garden is slowly re-establishing itself.

“I still think back and think how lucky we were,” Mrs Moore said.

“Considering the amount of damage the area received it was amazing someone wasn’t killed.

“The homestead is all repaired, the chimney is up, which is great, and we got to use it for winter last year.”

Shrubs planted to replace a number of big trees on the property’s eastern border lost in the windstorm, have started to grow.

“It has been hard without the rain to help kick everything along, we have tidied up but it is still pretty bare.

“You just can’t replace years of old growth over- night,” she said.

“This time 12 months ago our place was an absolute write-off. 

“It was a mammoth clean-up job.

“It is surprising how things bounce back and now we are getting back to normal.

“However, when we go out on our front veranda we can still look down and see the road and the house across the road, something we definitely couldn’t do before.

“You didn’t notice the traffic or hear the trucks.

“We are just so open now.”

It proved to be a tough year for the family’s orange grove as well.

“We didn’t get a good crop at all this season,” Mrs Moore said.

“They were knocked around pretty badly by the tornado and next year might struggle as well due to the lack of rain.”

The once-prolific jacaranda tree also failed to flower this season.

But it has not all been doom and gloom – a couple of precious gems have risen from the carnage.

“We had a number of crepe myrtle trees that were devastated in the storm.

“We thought we would lose them but they have all shot back and have actually flowered, just amazing,” she said.

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