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Plant Collections

Lower Yarra River Habitat

An ecological collection to display and conserve Indigenous plants from five plant communities found locally in the lower Yarra region.
This area has been transformed to display a significant collection of five Indigenous plant communities.
The planting of both terrestrial and wetland species from these fragmented plant communities have increased the Melbourne Gardens' Indigenous plant biodiversity.
  1. Riparian
  2. Swampy Paperbark Thicket
  3. Grassy Woodlands
  4. Wetland Community
  5. Cliff Escarpment Shrubland

Best Viewed

  • Spring


Rytidosperma geniculatum
Tufted Perennial grass 15cm H

Microseris lanceolata, Yam Daisy
Perennial herb to 40cm with yellow flowers

Correa glabra, Rock Correa
To 3mx3m Shrub with pale green bell flowers

Plant Census

Find out what plants grow at Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne.

Key Plants

Rytidosperma geniculatum
Tufted Perennial grass, c. 15 cm high

Cycnogeton procerum, Water Ribbons
Robust aquatic plant, c. 50 cm high

Correa glabra, Rock Correa
To 3 m × 3 m high shrub with pale green bell flowers

Microseris lanceolata, Yam Daisy
Perennial herb, to 40 cm high, with yellow flowers

Prostanthera lasianthos, Victorian Christmas Bush
Tall shrub or small tree with masses of white flowers

Pelargonium australe, Austral Storks-bill
Perennial herb, to 60 cm tall, with pink flowers

Microlaena stipoides, Weeping Grass
Variable perennial grass with weeping stems

Eucalyptus camaldulensis, River Red Gum
Large open tree, to 50 metres tall

Poa labillardierei, Common Tussock Grass
Large perennial grass, to 80 cm high

Melaleuca ericifolia, Swamp Paperbark
Small tree with white papery trunk, to 9 m high

Curator Notes

  1. Cut back cool season grasses,including Rytidosperma geniculatum, every 2–3 years to rejuvenate and to reduce shading out of forbs.
  2. Microseris lanceolata, a perennial herb, has fleshy tuberous roots which was a staple food of aboriginal people and was almost wiped out in the Melbourne area within 5 years of European settlement.
  3. Correa glabra is useful as a hedging plant and attracts birds, including the Eastern Spinebill.


  • 1984 - The Lower Yarra River Habitat collection has existed as a living collection.
  • 1998 - Long Island was a major extension identified in the RBG Melbourne masterplan.
  • Prior to European settlement the Yarra River and four swamps existed on the site.
  • 1897–1900 - The Yarra River was realigned to alleviate seasonal flooding.
  • 2000–01 - A valued work contribution was made by the Green Corp team managed by Australian Conservation Volunteers.
  • 2000–01 - Funding for the long Island Project was received from Parks Victoria Grants Program.
  • 2001 - 70 people attended the Community Planting Day on May 19.
  • 2001 - 200 school children attended Arbor Week planting day on May 18.