The gardens surrounding Melrose House are a part of the original estate of Charles Fowell Willett Watts and his wife Elizabeth. However, the garden was primarily established by their daughter, Frances, and her husband Percy Bolland Adams, with the help of their gardener Joseph Busch.
Percy had a love of the outdoors and was determined to beautify the streets of Nelson with his gifts of plantings and trees. His efforts in the gardens of Melrose were much admired and his fondness for native plants can be seen in early photographs of the garden showing palms and cabbage trees in abundance.
When it was built, Melrose House commanded views across Nelson but these days the mature gardens ensure the house is well-hidden from the street. Today there is a wide variety of native and introduced plants and trees, and several of the trees are protected.
The heritage woodland has been enhanced by thoughtful plantings by Nelson City Council, whose staff maintain the extensive gardens. All of the heritage trees have signs on them and a downloadable map (see Melrose Garden Walk below) identifies their location on the property.
Take the Melrose Garden Walk and enjoy the magnificent heritage trees and the woodland garden, click here.
Have your smart phone with you?
Tune into the audio tour HERE
More information on Trees and Plants at Melrose House, click here.