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Plant Craft Cottage, Royal Botanic Gardens

Architect: Henry Ginn, 1850

City of Melbourne | C63

Building Description

Plant Craft Cottage, built in 1850-1851, has rich heritage features including two original rooms built as a residence for the Under-Gardener of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, steeply pitched slate roof, ornate chimneys, brick recesses, lead-light windows and decorative barge boards. The design of Henry Ginn, the Colonial Architect of the time, who was responsible for the earliest layout of the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, was typical of domestic architecture popular in England at the time. Other examples of this design can be found in Melbourne can be found but are quite rare. Visitors to the Cottage will also see the original handmade bricks which are exposed under the veranda. Until the Yarra River straightening in 1898, the Cottage was perched high on the riverbank, evidence of which is in the steep drop between the Cottage and the path below, and the exposed rock face immediately behind the building. In the early 1900s the weatherboard extension, with its typical bull-nosed veranda and cast iron lace work was added, and this extension now forms the entrance to the Cottage.

What's On

An exhibition showcasing significant photos and images of the cottage will be displayed. Volunteers will also be available to highlight the significant heritage features of the building including the bricks, handmade over 170 years ago. The Cottage is now home to a range of craft artists who produce plant based crafts including baskets from plant materials and dyed wool and fabrics created using colours from Eucalyptus and a range of other plant species.


Melbourne Gardens, Gate H, Alexandra Ave, South Yarra 3141, South Yarra VIC


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