California and Victoria share a similar landscape and climate. Like Victoria the climate and geography of California varies enormously. Across the state there are hot dry deserts, temperate coastal areas, shrubby heathlands and cold windswept mountains tops. Due to these similarities many Californian plants can be grown in Victorian gardens.
Californian flora is rich and diverse both in the total number of species and in the number that are endemic that is, that grow only in California. Adaptable and water wise the Californian collection has a lot to offer and admire.
- July, August, September, October, November
Gambelia speciosa Showy Island Snapdragon
Ground cover, red flower, light green foliage.
Shrub, blue-white flowers, dark green foliage.
Large cacti, dark spikes, grey foliage.
Garrya elliptica Silk Tassel Bush
Glossy green leaves, shrub/tree, grey catkins.
Shrub, grey foliage, yellow daisy flower.
Salvia apiana White sage
Grey foliage, white flowers, shrub.
Find out what plants grow at Melbourne Gardens.
Arctostaphylos pungens Manzanita
Shrub, Burgundy trunk, pink flowers
Dudleya species Dudleya
Rosette clump, pink flowers, succulent
Ceanothus species California lilac
Shrub, blue-white flowers, dark green foliage
Shrub, grey foliage, yellow daisy flower
Large cacti, dark spikes, grey foliage
Shrub, rounded form, small foliage
Tree, curly grey seed pods
Upright cacti, thorny canes, red flowers
- Dudleya species are considered endangered in the wild.
- The majority of Californian plants handle hot dry summers.
- Do research as much as possible on any plant you grow not just Californian flora.
- 1991 - Royal Botanic Gardens agreed to develop the area formerly known as the William Guilfoyle Rock Lawn.
- 1991 - A staff exchange between Huntington Botanic Gardens in California and Melbourne Gardens staff took place to enable the collection of plant species and build knowledge of Californian flora. This was funded by the Maud Gibson Trust.
- 1992 - The area was developed with funds from Dame Elizabeth Murdoch.
- 1993 - The California Garden displays Californian plants suitable for Melbourne's climate and was opened to the public.