After being attracted by the call of the land, Gary and Julie Davis left the suburbs of Brisbane behind and established their macadamia farm ‘Glendamia Park’ from scratch. In 1996, after the kids had left home, they bought their flat, sandy block (a former state pine forest) in Donnybrook, Queensland, just 2kms from the coast and set to work clearing, planting and, after a few years, harvesting.
Their 4300-tree orchard is now fully grown but because they don’t irrigate the trees, they are always on the watch for when the rain might fall. In fact, Julie says that when it comes to life on the farm, she’s always holding her breath. “There seems to be no rhyme or reason to where the rain falls” says Julie.
They love the nuts they produce. “I’m just so proud that it’s an Australian native tree. Any recipes that I find that have a nut in them, that nut gets forgotten and I use macadamias instead.
I try to eat them everyday and there’s not too many people I’ve come across that don’t like them!” says Julie.
She and Gary have managed to pass their enthusiasm on to the next generation. Their son Mitchell now grows macadamias on a property near Gympie and their daughter Aimee is part of Macadamias at Falkirk Farm. This means that there is always something to talk about around the dinner table. “When we get together as a family it is hard not to be talking nuts…It drives the grandkids nuts!”