Anderson Gardens is the largest botanic garden in Townsville. Covering 25 hectares, the gardens include fine specimens of tropical trees and palms, grand avenues and the World Cycad Collection. Originally planted as an arboretum, the collections are developing with a strong emphasis on native and dry tropical plants.
With substantial botanic credentials, including the Cape York Peninsula Collection, one of the world's largest collections of Pandanus and the Tropical Orchard, everyday visitors as well as botanical enthusiasts can enjoy the diverse range of flora in Anderson Gardens.
Initiated in the early 1930's, the garden today is an innovative botanic accomplishment and a wonderful public asset.
Botanic collections have been developed in three separate gardens which together form Townsville Botanic Gardens. In addition to Anderson Gardens are Queens Gardens in North Ward and the Palmetum in Annandale.
Townsville, North Queensland. Located in the suburb of Mundingburra; travel south along Gulliver Street for vehicle access. Pedestrian access from Fulham Road, Balls Lane, and Wellington Street. Car parking is provided within the gardens around the internal roadway.
Anderson Gardens covers 25 hectares, is generally rectangular in shape and has an internal roadway circuit. A flood drain dominates the northern side of the gardens, this is often inundated during the wet season. Two central lakes also act as flood mitigation as well as being an ornamental feature. Predominantly an arboretum, the gardens have an abundance of open space and manicured lawns.
The plant collection in Anderson Gardens is wonderfully diverse, often unique and constantly developing. Hosting the greatest assortment of plant collections in Townsville Botanic Gardens they offer a botanical showcase highlighting native plants, dry tropical flora and species suitable for growing in our prevailing climate.
Significant collections of Pandanaceae, Cycads, Cape York Flora and tropical trees are particularly impressive.
The original land for Anderson Gardens was acquired from the Water and Electricity Supply Department in 1929. Much of the land is now Mundingburra State School, (including the original Thuringowa well), road reserve, and the Jubilee Bowls Club. Most of the existing Gardens were acquired between 1956 and 1963 as land acquisitions that once contained market gardens, sugar cane fields and a well supplying Townsville's earliest water reticulation scheme.
The Gardens were named in appreciation of the work of William Anderson (1845 - 1935), Townsville's first Curator of Parks (1878 - 1934). The original design prepared in 1962 by Alan Wilson, a Landscape Architect and Superintendent of Parks had a strong focus on taxonomic plantings. Several revisions have taken place since, the most recent by Land Plan Landscape Architects who developed the 2005 master plan.
Today the gardens are being developed and enhanced in accordance with the 2005 master plan to provide a magnificent spectacle for generations to enjoy.
World Cycad Garden
Created in 2007, this collection is one of the largest public displays of cycads in Queensland. The plants are arranged in four distinct zones of Australia, Asia, Americas and Africa. The majority of specimens have been transplanted from other areas of the garden bringing the collection together for better appreciation and comparison of the species. Over 300 plants comprising 50 species in 9 genera are represented. Adjacent to the garden is a stunning traditional date palm grove containing over 50 majestic specimens of this historically important palm.
Renowned to be the largest cultivated public collection of Pandanus in the world; it includes most of the Australian species as well as others from New Guinea, South-East Asia, the western Pacific Islands and Madagascar. The exotic species are grouped together near the Palm Lawn, while the native species are adjacent to the Cape York Habitat.
Cape York Habitat
This area features palms, gingers, Australian Pandanus and ornamental trees from Far North Queensland including Cape York Peninsula. The area is sensitively managed to create a ‘natural’ feel to the habitat.
The majority of the Palm Collection is displayed in an open setting near the lakes. Especially impressive are those from drier climates such as Livistona mariae, Wahingtonia robusta, Borassus flabellifer, Attalea cohune and Hyphaene coriacea. An avenue of Bismarckia nobilis and an edible date palm grove (Phoenix dactylifera) provide palmscapes on an imposing scale.
A recent introduction, these large scale plantings will give the garden structure, stature and grandeur for decades to come. Natives and local and worldwide dry tropical plants have been planted including the Weeping Cabbage Palm (Livistona decora), native to just south of Townsville; Queensland Kauri Pine (Agathis robusta); and the Bismarck palm (Bismarckia nobilis) native to the drier regions of Madagascar.
A fine representation of fruit trees and plants with edible parts suited to the tropics. Includes commonly grown species such as Lychee, Black Sapote, Papaw, Citrus and less common fruit such as Breadfruit, Wampi, Miracle Fruit, Dates, Cashews, Jack Fruit, and Longan.