Monday, 15 August 2016

New Norcia

My great grandfather William George Smith was a farmer in Victoria's Wimmera but when he was a young man he worked on rail construction in Western Australia for a few months and kept a diary. He visited New Norcia in 1889 and may have been considering moving to the west. I've blogged here about his visit on my family history blog. It's interesting to compare his visit with ours.

He doesn't mention the environment or the mission's buildings but seems to have been very interested in the farming methods at New Norcia and nearby Glentromie station. We didn't do the guided tour of New Norcia (apparently it's very good) but we had a look at some of the buildings, read quite a few of the information boards, had a look at the old machinery in a shed near the information centre and bought some bread baked on the site. The main road through the town is noisy but there is a ring road being built at the moment.

New Norcia
The church at New Norcia and the monastery in the background.
It was lunch time when we left so we stopped just south of the town at a road worksite because there was space to park and there seemed to be a bit of native veg across the road. There were piles of blue metal, mulched up bark, graded areas... and the best suite of plants I've seen since we arrived in Western Australia!!! 

Lunch next to a road worksite.
Within just twenty metres of the van there was an astonishing variety of plants, including two orchids, and most were flowering and healthy. Astonishing. I hardly had time to eat my lunch and I didn't even go across the road. So, for this post you're getting a double dose of flower photos because I don't want to leave any out.

Greenhood Orchid



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