Kibbenjelok is a 130 acre property just outside of Middleton, a small village in the fancy sounding D’Entrecasteaux Channel area of Tasmania. Settled in the mid 1800s by German timber-getters after Tasmanian Blackwood, “Forest Home” was an apple orchard when Gay and Kees Klok took ownership in the mid 1980s with the intent of creating a garden paradise. That vision, a lot of hard work and no doubt some tears created “Kibbenjelok”, a 6 acre cool climate garden eden. The garden is now over 30 years old and has been featured in Australia’s Open Garden Scheme.
Our path to Kibbenjelok began early in 2013. Having established numerous gardens and planted thousands of trees on previous properties, we were keen to find somewhere that at least had the backbone of a garden that we could build on. Our wishlist included mature trees, good water (learnt from the heartache of watching things shrivel and die in drought) and a cool climate (learnt from planting the things we love – rhododendrons, camellias etc – in completely the wrong environment). A liveable house would be a bonus, but not essential. We found Kibbenjelok through an internet real estate search in mid 2013, but a less than helpful real estate agent dissuaded us from pursuing it and it wasn’t until a Christmas trip to visit family that we finally set foot on the property. Kibbenjelok ticked all the boxes and some and so we find ourselves here – excited to be taking custodianship of this wonderful property, grateful to Gay and Kees for trusting us with their legacy.
This blog is to share and chronicle Kibbenjelok – its history and the times to come. It is my hope to one day re-open Kibbenjelok so that others can share this wonderful place. You can read more about the making of the garden at Kibbenjelok on the History page.
If you’d like to see what Kibbenjelok looked like when we took custody, this little video captures some of the images at the time.