the right place

Planting the seeds of community

sustainability Article #40

The environment wins in a new neighbourhood where the history of place is told through retained trees and a productive orchard.


Ian Russell gets a bit excited about the dirt at Henley Brook. It’s the same rich, fertile soil that supports a thriving wine industry in the neighbouring Swan Valley.

Little wonder that the man whose vast horticultural knowledge has made him Mirvac’s National Landscaping Service Director, was intent on letting none of that precious dirt go to waste.

At the gateway to the Swan Valley wine district, Henley Brook will have its own productive orchard where residents will be able to pick and eat as they please. Once an agglomeration of hobby farms, established citrus trees have been transplanted to a nursery awaiting a permanent place in Orchard Park. There will be olives, avocado, apple, pear, nectarine and loquat trees with an underplanting of vegetables and herbs.

Mr Russell’s passion for plants extends across the entire 50.97 hectare Henley Brook estate where more than 600 trees, some with up to 60 years growth, will be retained.


“We worked our masterplan around keeping the trees that we could and transferring others into the landscape at Henley Brook or in some cases other projects,” 


Mirvac National Landscaping Service Director

Wongin Park, Upfront delivery of Wongin Park supports community building.

The Henley Brook project team

Stage 5 home sites just a short stroll from the proposed Orchard Park and Wongin Park are now selling.

A living stream is proposed to run through the community and the revegetation project has generated plenty of community interest.

“We’ll be keeping the existing trees which give a canopy over the stream and then revegetating,” says Mr Russell. “There’s a lot of community interest in restoring the stream to good health and we hope to have school kids come along and help with the planting as they have done on other projects. It’s good for them to experience nature and understand how the ecosystem works.”

Mirvac has engaged closely with the local Indigenous community, seeking advice and also collaborating with students from Moorditj Noongar Community College on an art project for Wongin Park.

Creating the artworks, which reflect the local flora and fauna native to the area, deepened the students’ knowledge of their own culture and enables visitors to the park to gain a deeper appreciation of traditional Noongar culture.

“The great thing is by keeping the trees you are being sustainable, saving money and getting a better product.”


Mirvac National Landscaping Service Director

Walking trails weave through a mature landscape

Henley Brook on-site nursery

The 30-year-old Liquidambers that stand sentinel at the sandstone entry to Henley Brook by Mirvac look as though they’ve been there forever but in fact have been carefully uprooted and transplanted in place. A drive along a boulevard shaded by mature trees leads to the sales office and Wongin Park Playground with its delightful tiered treehouse and Crooked Spire Café.

“We started with a good product here but you need to have the mentality to make it better,” says Mr Russell. “The great thing is by keeping the trees you are being sustainable, saving money and getting a better product. It’s enjoyable for the whole team to see trees being saved and know we are making a difference.”

The houses in completed stages are brand new but the maturity of the landscaping gives the neighbourhood a lived-in look and feel, and with that comes a heightened sense of comfort and belonging.

With its abundance of flora and ideal growing conditions, some of the Henley Brook trees have found their way to other Mirvac communities. The jacarandas at Iluma’s Pegasus Park just 5km away, began life at Henley Brook as did the Metrosideros excelsa, better known as New Zealand’s pohutukawa Christmas tree.

“Henley Brook really reinforces Mirvac’s understanding of the needs of our customers and our commitment to environmental protection and sustainability.”


Mirvac General Manager, Residential Development VIC & WA

New homes framed by mature trees

Tending the gardens at Moorditj Noongar Community Colleges

The Mirvac landscaping team also planted an orchard and vegetable garden at the college along with a “bush tucker” garden of edible Indigenous plant species.

Henley Brook lies in the nexus between city and country, 25km from the Perth CBD, only 5km from a major shopping centre at Ellenbrook and just minutes from the Swan Valley. Distance will dissolve further with the rollout of the WA Government’s proposed Metronet project linking Henley Brook to the Morley-Ellenbrook line via the Whiteman Park station.

Mirvac General Manager Residential VIC & WA Elysa Anderson says landscape, lifestyle and location have been major factors in strong sales at Henley Brook.

“The retention of trees and generous open green space have proven immensely popular with residents who have completed homes and moved in,” says Ms Anderson.

“In a new residential community, it’s extremely rare to have such a wellestablished natural environment. Henley Brook really reinforces Mirvac’s understanding of the needs of our customers and our commitment to environmental protection and sustainability.

“The open space incorporated into the masterplan is appreciated now but will become even more valued as the population in the region increases.”

Discover more about Henley Brook here. 


Planting the seeds of community