Handbook of gardening for New Zealand


Date Created



Hocken UAV/M



Whitcombe and Tombs: Christchurch


1st ed.
The first comprehensive gardening manual published in New Zealand was Michael Murphy's Handbook of Gardening for New Zealand (ca. 1885), which also included chapters on poultry and bee-keeping. Murphy (1833-1914) came to New Zealand from Ireland, via Tasmania, and became Secretary of the Canterbury Agricultural and Pastoral Association. He edited their quarterly publication The New Zealand Country Journal (1877-1898). As well as writing about land improvement and crops, he made a fine garden at Woodham, Christchurch, judging from the illustrations in the 4th and final edition of his handbook (1907). Murphy openly drew on material from British books such as Loudon's Encyclopaedia, and believed that ‘One quarter of an acre, well managed, would provide a large family all the year round with an ample supply of wholesome vegetables.' (Preface to 1st edition).




Murphy, Michael, “Handbook of gardening for New Zealand,” ourheritage.ac.nz | OUR Heritage, accessed April 21, 2024, https://ourheritage.ac.nz/items/show/7527.