If you have yet to discover Quarry Park, take a drive up Cowan Point Road, look for the sign on the right, park your vehicle, and slip through the gate down the path, over the little stone bridge to a clearing. There you will find a large and remarkable stone circle designed by Bowen resident, Josephine Riley. It’s an artfully-rendered sculpture of giant native stones that beautifully represents the natural topography, dramatic scenery, and sensuous curves of the island.
The moss garden
Together with the Bowen Island Municipality, we tried to groom the stone circle to accentuate its strong structure and function, but we were challenged by tall, weedy growth that obscured its beautiful form.
What to do? We decided that a perfect complement to the stone sculpture would be create a low growing natural moss garden within the four quadrants of the circle, using a selection of native mosses and small scale ferns.
To prevent deep rooted weeds, such as dandelions or thistles, from establishing themselves in the moss garden and causing a maintenance headache, we chose construction grade landscape cloth as a weed barrier. Then we added 3-4 inches of pre-screened Bowen soil, which we covered with dense little pads of moss (pressed into the soil to ensure that they were firmly established).
In addition, we incorporated maidenhair and deer ferns in pleasing compositions radiating from the vertical centre stones. The result is, we think, a very simple, lovely, and authentic feature for Quarry Park that will surprise and please many generations of visitors in the future.
Come and see the result!
Do come and visit Quarry Park’s stone circle. It’s a perfect place to meditate, appreciate some of our lovely native plants and mosses up-close and, perhaps, to get ideas for your very own moss garden.
Click on the map below to download a PDF version, courtesy of Will Husby.
Click on the images below to see a larger version