Shenstone, 15 Craigend St. Leura
Courtesy Mr. Noel Roscoe
"Shenstone" has been in the present owner's family since 1939 and has been described as one of the few remaining Californian bungalows on the mountains in its almost original condition. The entrance driveway is bordered on the street side with a snowy cascade of Arabis ground cover and a row of standard roses, four of which were planted after the devastating bushfires of 1957.
At the rear of the house on the southern border are Cypress pines, sugar maple, and an 80 year old Bay laurel. Beneath these trees are camellias, tree peonies, vireya rhodendrons, tulips and a border of hundreds of pansies. Below this garden on the right is a glorious carpet of spreading mauve/pink Alpine phlox, while on the left is the rhododendron garden.
The orchard, which is bordered by an old tennis court, water tank, and rustic woodshed, contains many varieties of fruit, citrus and olive trees, some of which were planted in the 1920's and 40's. The middle lawn area above the tennis court is surrounded by numerous vintage azaleas, camellias, pieris and rhododendrons, which shelter such delights as Solomon's seal and lily of the valley.The little exquisite plants with fine ferny leaves and dainty cream or blue tubular flowers seen throughout most garden areas are called Corydalis.
Shafts of sunlight give a vibrant glow to "Shenstone's" neat front lawn which is heavily shaded by a 70-year old multi-trunked Japanese Thuja Dolobrata. Sorensen stone walls edge the rhododendron beds at the house front. Before leaving "Shenstone" make sure you step onto the front verandah to enjoy Noel's wonderful collection of cyclamen.