With ANZAC Day just past I have one of the most beautiful stories I have had the honor to hear and now share.
Marion Smith has lived in Toowoomba her whole life and is very well known for her “green thumb” oh and her volunteer work.
I had the privilege of talking recently with Marion about gardening and flowers and it come to one of my local favorites, The VIOLET.
Did you know that The VIOLET is the TOOWOOMBA flower?
Do you know how The VIOLET became our TOOWOOMBA flower?
There is a beautiful part of our Toowoomba history of how the women of Toowoomba come together after WW1 and sold Violets to raise money to build a monument from the Mothers in memory of their soldier sons, hence the name the Mothers Memorial.
Anyway back to Marion’s Violets.
Long story short I am the now slightly anxious owner of one of Marion’s Violets.
WHY am I anxious?
I am NOT a green thumb, but Marion assures me it’s easy to look after and gave me all the instructions.
This Violet is not any Violet it is a plant that has been passed from generation to generation in her family and to their family & friends. Marion knows her Great Grand Mother Martha Maddox had this plant then her mum Elizabeth then Marion and now her daughters. Marion also let me know the plant lived for many years in Healy Street Toowoomba. So this plant has a story of at least 90 years in her family and to Marion and her daughters now it is about keeping the story of what Marion calls the true Toowoomba Violet alive and honoring the memory of the soldiers. Marion’s dad served in PNG
Marion also shared some photos of her great grand mother and mother with me and one other special story.
A violet made for carnival flowers about 20 years ago for carnival they were made in Italy Marion won it at carnival launch.
Thank you Marion so much for sharing your story, local history and your love of violets with me, it’s one very special story and I feel very blessed.