Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Camden Park House from the East Lawn. Photography by Leigh Youdale

Selected plants in the Hortus

Pyrus communis ‘Léon Leclerc de Laval’

‘Fruit large, long-obovate, and rounding towards the eye. Skin smooth and shining, yellow, strewed with brown dots, and marked with tracings of russet. Eye large, with long, straight, narrow segments, set in a shallow basin. Stalk an inch and a half long, inserted without depression by the side of a fleshy lip. Flesh white, half-melting or crisp, juicy, sweet, and perfumed. An excellent stewing pear, which in some seasons is half-melting, and is in use from January till May and June.’ [Hogg – Fruit Manual p.197/1860].

Added on May 20 2010

Michelia doltsopa Buch.-Ham. ex DC.

Tree with slender pointed leaves, to 25cm long, and strongly scented yellowish, green-tinged flowers.  To 25m but sometimes shrubby.  [RHSD, Hilliers'].

Added on March 24 2010

Rheum undulatum Pall.

Rheum undulatum Pall. is today generally considered to be a variety of Rheum rhaponticum L. which see, Rheum undulatum differing from the common Rhubarb in having rounded stems and wavier leaves.  [RHSD, Hortus].  See Notes in Rheum rhaponticum L. for further details.

Added on February 15 2009

Rhododendron molle Sieb. and Zucc.

‘A rich yellow, with the upper portion darker.  Very pretty.  Plant five feet by three.’  [FC p.136/1848].  

Added on June 10 2009

Narcissus varieties unidentified

Undescribed varieties but no doubt including some of more than 100 named tazettiforms mentioned by Baker.  [Baker Am.].  A large number of tazettiforms, in a range of colours, are naturalised at Camden Park today and probably include some of the varieties included here. The illustration shows a selection of tazettiforms naturalised on Blarney Bank at Camden Park. The segments range from white to deep yellow and the coronas from the palest cream to orange. A pure white Narcissus papyraceus is seen at bottom right.

Added on May 23 2009

Rosa ‘George Cuvier’

Bourbon rose.  The flowers are rosy-cherry in colour, beautifully tinted with light purple, large, full and of compact form, on a moderate sized shrub.  The Gardeners’ Chronicle described its flowers as bright cerise, shaded pink.  [Paul (1848, 1863, 1888), Gard. Chron. 1846, Amat].


Added on February 11 2010

Synoum glandulosum (Sm.) Juss.

Frost tender evergreen shrub or small tree with pinnate leaves composed of up to 7 elliptical-lance-shaped leaflets, and reddish-white flowers most of the year.  To 7m.  [FNSW, Beadle].

Added on March 21 2009


Improvements to Hortus Camdenensis

The Hortus software has been upgraded. This led to some minor errors in the layout of plant names, particularly in the headings of Plant Profile pages but these have now been largely overcome. Improvements are also progressively being made to the content of the Hortus in three main areas, botanical and horticultural history, cross referencing and illustrations. Some enhancements will be done as the opportunity arises but most will be completed family by family. This will take at least two years to complete.


Published Sep 14, 2010 - 04:06 PM | Last updated Aug 12, 2012 - 04:36 PM

Sir William Macarthur on Vines and Vineyards

Sir William Macarthur wrote extensively on vines and Vineyards. It is our intention to publish all his writings in the Hortus.

Published Aug 01, 2010 - 04:58 PM | Last updated Oct 04, 2010 - 03:47 PM

Working Bee dates

Working Bee dates for 2012.

Published Jun 29, 2010 - 02:59 PM | Last updated Jan 10, 2012 - 04:19 PM

Open House and Gardens

Camden Park House and Gardens will be open to the public on Saturday 22nd September, 2012, from 12.00 noon until 4.00 pm, and Sunday 23rd from 10.00 am until 4.00 pm.

Published Dec 30, 2009 - 01:58 PM | Last updated Jan 09, 2012 - 04:31 PM


Letters on the Culture of the Vine Part 2: Climate and Soil

Letters on the Culture of the Vine and Manufacture of Wine by Maro, pen-name of William Macarthur. Letters I and II deal with climate, site and soil.

The entire book is reproduced in the Hortus in ten parts. For background information and Macarthur’s Introduction to the book see Part 1.

Published Sep 01, 2010 - 03:26 PM | Last updated Jul 21, 2011 - 11:16 AM

Thomas Harris (1885-1948)

Thomas Harris, born in Worcestershire in 1885, was a gardener at Camden Park from 1913 to 1938.

Published Aug 16, 2012 - 11:09 AM | Last updated Aug 16, 2012 - 12:09 PM

Colonial Australian Wines

The following article appeared in The Gardeners’ Chronicle of Saturday, November 25th, 1854. It includes a review of seven wines sent to the proprietors of The Gardeners’ Chronicle from Camden Park by William Macarthur, together with his notes on the wines, the vineyards in which they were produced and the economic conditions pertaining to wine production and sale in Australia. Macarthur’s brief notes, when read with the more detailed essay Some Account of the Vineyards at Camden, extends our knowledge of wine production at Camden but most importantly provides an external (but not necessarily unbiased) view of the quality of the wines.

Published Jun 30, 2011 - 02:12 PM | Last updated Jul 04, 2011 - 09:00 AM

The Family Amaryllidaceae at Camden Park

Amaryllidaceae was a very significant family of plants in the history of the Camden Park gardens.  The following Essay provides a little background to these important plants.

Published Jan 01, 2010 - 04:11 PM | Last updated Jul 30, 2010 - 02:54 PM

About the Hortus

The Hortus attempts to correctly identify, describe, illustrate and provide a brief history of all the plants grown at Camden Park between c.1820 and 1861.

Plants in the Hortus

The Hortus plants served a wide range of purposes: ornament, living fences, fibre, dyestuffs, medicine, food from the garden and orchard, and many others.

Plant Families

Plants in the Hortus are grouped by Family, perhaps the most useful of the higher order classifications.


Essays enhance the Hortus by providing a level of detail about the gardens, people, and plants that would be inappropriate for an individual plant profile.

Hortus News

News provides an opportunity for people interested in the gardens to keep in touch with the work being done to maintain and reinvigorate the gardens and receive advance notice of events such as Open Garden days.