Lone Pine and Poppies in ANU Anzac Garden

7 December 2017

Beautiful poppies that are surrounding the Lone Pine planted in the middle of the garden on ANU Acton campus are a scene not to be missed. In front of the School of Earth Sciences, ANU Gardens & Grounds team tend the ANZAC garden that was established last year to commemorate Australian history. Apart from the poppies and the Lone Pine, the garden is also a home to Gallipoli Rosemary and Rose and Gallipoli Centenary Rose, reminding the passersby of some of the most significant moments in our history.

The Lone Pine has been grown from seed collected from the tree at the Australian War Memorial, originating from Gallipoli and planted as a symbol of the Anzac spirit.

“The Garden has steadily evolved over the past two years. It started when ANU arborist Melinda Walker came up with a brilliant idea of planting the Lone Pine in this space, then the Grounds Manager George Abraham suggested the use of the Flanders poppies. Then we added some rosemary and Gallipoli roses as symbols of peace.”

“It is a work in progress. In the coming years the Lone Pine will grow much bigger becoming the central feature surrounded by many more poppies,“ said Michael Kelly, Deputy Grounds Manager.

The original Lone Pine received its name after the battle in which all but one tree had been cut down by Turkish soldiers to fortify their trenches. After the fierce battle where more than 2,000 Australian soldiers lost their lives, Lance Corporal Benjamin Smith collected a pine cone from the remnants of the last tree and sent it to his mother. From its seeds, two seedlings were grown, with one planted in the grounds at the Australian War Memorial by Prince Henry, the Duke of Gloucester in honour of all the sons who fell at Lone Pine.