News & Events

A gift of garden heralds 150th anniversary

July 8, 2019

27 June 2019

Residents living at the Old Colonists’ Association of Victoria’s Leith Park retirement village are enjoying finding their green thumbs thanks to a stunning sensory garden gifted to them by horticulturalist and TV personality, Melissa King, Northcote Pottery, AMES and The Garden Company.

The communal garden is packed with flowering trees, garden beds brimming with foliage and flowers, wide, easily accessible paths surrounded by garden art and decorative screens that delight the senses.

It stands in front of the much-used community centre, a perfect place for residents to gather and potter.

The gift was the concept of Northcote Pottery which last year leveraged a competition that saw the Australian public given the opportunity to win a garden makeover.

Jane Glynn, who works at Leith Park retirement village in the Diamond Valley, was thrilled that she entered and won the prize.

“OCAV is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year, and gardens have always been a central feature of our villages. What better gift could there be than one which restores a garden, and gives back to older people who enjoy the chance to potter, plant and get out in nature,” Jane said.

Melissa King and teams behind Northcote Pottery, The Garden Company and AMES volunteered their time, services and products, free of charge, for four full days, transforming the once small patch of unused grass into a tranquil, beautifully landscaped place for all to enjoy.

Designer Melissa King said: “The garden is easy to navigate and accessible for everyone to enjoy, and it features wide pathways, and raised planter boxes for easy picking. We have also included a bird bath to entice our feathered friends to visit and bring colour and movement to the garden.”

Of what the contribution of the garden means to her, Melissa said, “I’m so excited to be a part of this project, to create a garden full of visual interest and colour that will bring a smile to people’s faces for years to come.”

Phillip Wohlers, CEO of Leith Park Retirement Village and Aged Care said, “We are excited about the possibilities that this wonderful new community garden will bring to our residents. It will become a focal point for our village, where people come together to chat, or to be alone in amongst plants and nature.”

“This is a sanctuary for the residents of Leith Park – a tranquil, beautiful space where they can gather together to chat, relax or stimulate their senses – and a place to nurture their love of gardening.”

Northcote Pottery, in partnership with multi-award-winning landscapers, The Garden Company and AMES brands, Trojan, Tuscan Path, Cyclone, Nylex, Supercraft, Westmix, Kelso, and horticulturist, writer and TV personality, Melissa King were all involved in landscaping and delivering the garden.


Media inquiries: Penny Underwood, MediaWise, (03) 9818 8540 or


Volunteering is important to Deb, enabling her to contribute in the aged care sector. “I love it when the residents get downright cheeky. I love it when we get a bit too loud with laughing."

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