Passing under the University footbridge, heading upstream along the banks of the Torrens you are strolling through Grundy Gardens.

The Gardens’ main feature is the dry stone walling which provides paths and takes advantage of the topography of the site along the edge of the River Torrens. They were Designed by Stanley Orchard, (the Council’s Curator of Parks and Gardens from 1933).

Grundy Gardens got its name well after the gardens were created. Grundy Gardens was named after Councillor and Alderman Tom Hadfield Grundy (1902-1966) in belated recognition of his 34 years of service to the Council. We're not sure when Grundy Gardens got its name but probably it was after his death in 1966 - certainly no earlier than the 1950's.

Only a very small proportion of the Adelaide Park Lands contains remnant native vegetation or bush. Just six percent. Another 24% of the Park Lands is open woodland,

That phrase “open woodland” tends to refer to land that was cleared in the early decades of European settlement (1840's to 1860's) and later re-planted with trees with a mixture of native species and introduced trees.

About 70 percent of the whole Park Lands have been “improved” - with landscaping, gardens, sports fields, roads, paths, buildings and so on.

Karrawirra (Park 12) fits into that category. There is little or no open woodland and no scrub in this park. It's a “modified landscape”. The river banks have been extensively graded and converted to gardens. There is very little of the indigenous riverine vegetation.

In Karrawirra there is an emphasis on exotics such as white poplars, despite the meaning of Karrawirra, red-gum. Some red-gums do remain alongside the river.

The whole of Park 12 requires intensive horticultural maintenance, with several areas of garden bedding and clipped hedges. This is a big expense for the City Council.

Over the years Karrawirra (Park 12) has seen layer upon layer of uses and activities, changes of land use, built structures, including many highly rated heritage areas and objects.

Now let's walk further upstream to the historic Albert Bridge.

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Spoken description - Grundy Gardens
Creator: Adelaide Park Lands Preservation Association
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