birds in bird bath in front of pink flowering hedge

15 Sep, 2020

Noongar seasons at Government House: Djilba

Every second month we will showcase the wonderful array of flora and fauna in our heritage listed gardens, through the lens of the Nooongar seasonal calendar.

The Grounds of Government House are open to the public every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday between 12 noon and 2pm.

Visitors are invited to take a stroll around the beautiful heritage gardens, or sit back and enjoy a picnic lunch. Occasionally we may be unable to open the Grounds. If you are making a special trip, please contact the Office to check that they will be open.

About the Noongar seasonal calendar

From the Australian Government Bureau of Meteorology

“In the south west of Australia, the Nyoongar seasonal calendar includes six different seasons in a yearly cycle.

These are Birak, Bunuru, Djeran, Makuru, Djilba and Kambarang. Each of the six seasons represents and explains the seasonal changes we see annually. The flowering of many different plants, the hibernation of reptiles and the moulting of swans are all helpful indicators that the seasons are changing.

The Nyoongar seasons can be long or short and are indicated by what is happening and changing around us rather than by dates on a calendar.

This six-season calendar is extremely important to Nyoongar people, as it is a guide to what nature is doing at every stage of the year, as well as understanding respect for the land in relation to plant and animal fertility cycles and land and animal preservation.”

The current season is Djilba

During her Acknowledgement of Country at our August Investiture Ceremonies, Emeritus Professor and senior Noongar woman Colleen Hayward AM explained the characteristics of the season of Djilba,

“Djilba is one of six transitional Noongar seasons. Aboriginal people recognise six seasons rather than only four.

Right now we are in the season known as Djilba. This season is marked by a massive explosion of flowering colour – starting with the yellows of our acacias and the pinks of the Geraldton Wax.

It is a transitional time of the year with some very cold and clear days combining with warmer, rainy and windy days mixing with the occasional sunny day or two.”

Photo gallery

A selection of images from our garden this month, featuring the 32 year old Chinese Wisteria (Wisteria Sinensis), one of our growing duck families and the pinks and purples of our azaleas near the top lawn.

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