Fitzroy Gardens

Christopher Biggs

Melbourne, Australia

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Artist's Description

Fitzroy Gardens, East Melbourne, Victoria.

Valued for their historic, aesthetic, architectural and horticultural significance, the Fitzroy Gardens were classified by the National Trust in 1974 and placed on the Victorian Heritage Register in 1999. Originally set aside as a reserve in 1848, the gardens derived their name from Sir Charles Augustus Fitzroy, Governor of New South Wales (1846 – 1851) and Governor-General of the Australian Colonies (1851 – 1855).

The most notable feature of the Gardens is the wonderful trees that have been used to line many of the pathways.

The gardens were initially designed by Clement Hodgkinson and planted by park gardener, James Sinclair, as a dense woodland with meandering avenues. The land originally had been swampy with a creek draining into the Yarra River. The creek was landscaped with ferns and 130 willows, but that did not stop it smelling foul from the sewage from the houses of East Melbourne. The creek was used for irrigation of the western side of the gardens for fifty years. In the early 1900s the creek water substantially improved when sewerage mains were installed to the residences of East Melbourne.

In the early years quick growing blue gums and wattles were planted to provide wind breaks. Elm Trees were planted to create avenues along pathways, which created a pattern in resemblance to the Union Flag.

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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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