Joseph Banks Native Plants Reserve is one of only a few specialised gardens in Sydney devoted entirely to Australian native plants.
Council established the reserve in 1969 as a tribute to Sir Joseph Banks, who collected numerous flora specimens when he visited nearby Botany Bay in 1770. Sir Joseph Banks (1743-1820) was the official botanist aboard Lieutenant James Cook’s Endeavour which came to Botany Bay in 1770. His name is perpetuated in Australian plants such as the Banksia and Grevillea banksii.
The landscaped garden covers an area of 2.2 hectares of Hawkesbury sandstone and is crossed by 4 kilometres of sealed paths. Many plants are labelled and a section has been established to display Aboriginal food and medicinal plants. The vast array of native plants forms a delightfully relaxing garden and a home for many birds and other native fauna.
The aims are of the reserve are to:
display the form and flowering/fruiting characteristics of a wide variety of native plants from many parts of Australia
demonstrate how these specimens grow in Sydney’s climatic conditions
The Australian Plants Society, Sutherland Group has had a long association with the reserve since its establishment. Members of the group have fundraising activities to help provide plants, interpretive signs and plant labels as well as leading guided walks for interested people at different times of the year. Sutherland Group has monthly work days to plant and maintain some of the garden beds in the reserve and volunteers are always welcome. For more information about the work days or the Sutherland Group, visit their website.
There is limited wheelchair and pram access into the gardens, due to the terrain. Toilets include facilities for the mobility impaired.
Note: To hold a ceremony or have related photography at the park you must contact the council to make a booking.