in the Dandenong Ranges
A must see garden made at the top of The Dandenongs where a maze of stone walls and jewel like garden rooms are set within woodlands of magnificent and historic, cool climate trees. Some 20 garden compartments are threaded through glorious 80 year old European beech, magnolias, maples and a collection of Himalayan tree rhododendrons, all beautifully grown and a testament to the lush, moist soils of the Dandenongs. The garden is highlighted by glorious herbaceous borders which focus on two of the finest Japanese weeping maples to be seen anywhere in the world.
National Rhododendron Gardens
Enjoy a self-guided tour, strolling through 40 hectares of scenic botanic gardens or a picnic by the lake and take in stunning views of the Australian Alps. Photograph the native birdlife and brilliant floral scenery. During the Spring Floral Festival held annually from August to November visitors can enjoy a series of undercover floral displays, including the largest undercover display of daffodils in the Southern Hemisphere. The garden has a gatehouse, gazebos, grassed picnic areas and toilet facilities for people with limited mobility.
Designed to take advantage of the steep slopes, the terraced gardens of Pirianda are distinctive for their combination of botanically important trees, shrubs and perennials with an over storey of large blackwoods and mountain ash towering over the natural fern gullies. The garden is particularly beautiful in autumn when the trees change colour to the many hues of orange, red and yellow. Enjoy magnificent views and tranquil walks, bird watching, photography and picnicking on the lawns at Pirianda Gardens.
Alfred Nicholas Gardens
Established in 1929 as part of the historic Burnham Beeches Estate, Alfred Nicholas Gardens has extensive water features with waterfalls and an ornamental lake. The many linking paths through this garden take you beneath a canopy of awesome Mountain Ash Trees. Walk through shady trees down to the picturesque lake, and picnic by the quaint boathouse. In spring, view the flowering azaleas, cherry trees and viburnum. Popular for walks, picnics and birdwatching by the lake. Walks are on gravel requiring a degree of fitness.
Alowyn Garden is designed along strong symmetrical lines that become blurred by the softness of the spaces and the grace of the trees, within an area of approximately 4 acres. There are 5 clearly defined areas within the gardens, a perennial border, designed to display colour from Spring to Autumn, a silver birch forest, an edible garden of generous proportions, a parterre garden and a number of display gardens. Through all these area runs a wisteria and rose covered archway 100m long with a sunken garden and a classical fountain as a centre piece.
Coombe - The Melba Estate
The gardens of Coombe Cottage were prepared in 1909, under the personal direction of W.R.Guilfoyle the curator of the Melbourne Botanical Gardens. Behind the six hundred metres of cypress hedge lie a succession of terraced lawns, native, italian and vegetable gardens, a croquet lawn, an old tennis court, a newly established rose arbor and the oldest swimming pool in Victoria. The gardens contain rare plants and beautiful old world trees, including an English oak rumoured to be over 180 years old.